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Beam Suntory Launches “First-Ever” World Blended Whisky ‘Ao’

Suntory World Whisky 'Ao'

Beam Suntory has announced the launch of the “first-ever” world blended Whisky, Suntory World Whisky ‘Ao.’ The new offering is blended using Whisky from distilleries in Japan, Scotland, Ireland, Canada, and the United States.

‘Ao’ means “Blue” in Japanese and the Whisky is named after the oceans that connect the distilleries. The release is exclusive to global travel retail and will be available in 16 markets, where it will retail for $71. ‘Ao’ is the first innovative whisky launch in global travel retail since the coronavirus pandemic began.

Suntory World Whisky ‘Ao’ features notes of vanilla, tropical fruit and cinnamon. The distinctive climate, fermentation and distillation processes in each whisky-making region gives the Whisky its unique taste. 

Fifth generation Suntory chief blender, Shinji Fukuyo, selected each liquid based-on Suntory’s globally-recognised Monozukuri craftsmanship – a relentless pursuit of perfection, attention to detail and quality. Building on Suntory’s history of craftsmanship, this premium blended Whisky embodies the spirit of Suntory and is a tribute to the liquid’s long history.

“Ao is an exceptional whisky which, through the art of Suntory blending, allows you to enjoy the unique characteristics of all five major whisky-making regions,” said Fukuyo.

Ed Stening, Global Head of Travel Retail Marketing at Beam Suntory International, said: “This is a truly innovative whisky that blends five very different distilleries’ greatest assets and unique crafts. We couldn’t be more excited to share this exciting innovation with global travel retail.”

Suntory World Whisky ‘Ao’ is now available across 16 travel retail markets.

In related news, Beam Suntory-owned Scotch brand Bruichladdich unveiled the Octomore 11 series at the end of September. The new range of heavily peated Scotch Whiskies from the Islay distillery includes three expressions and is set to launch on October 1.

Earlier in the month, Beam-backed Basil Hayden’s brought dropped the 2020 edition of its 10 Year Bourbon. Originally launched in December 2018, this is the third annual release of the Whiskey, which returns to shelves in limited quantities.