Here at Suntory, we are committed to offering safety, reliability, and delight. We create new value and always provide high-quality products to enrich the everyday lives of our consumers. Our dedication to perfection is at the heart of our work. We strive for excellence from the very beginning of the process to the end. At Suntory, we believe in being: “All for the Quality.”
This means that every stage from the very beginning of product development to the moment of consumption, must have the highest standards of quality and safety.
With the heritage of our craftsmanship and commitment to innovation, we strive to enrich consumers’ lives.
This is the true meaning of Suntory.
Suntory is renowned for its whisky, but less well known is our long history of distilling spirits. It begins with our founder, Shinjiro Torii, who made the first Suntory gin in 1936, Hermes Gin. Shinjiro and his successors then continued to work to build a deep knowledge of distilling and blending techniques.
The recent offering from the House of Suntory is a Japanese premium craft gin we have named ROKU, a harmonious blend of six Japanese botanicals that perfectly captures the essence of Japan’s four seasons.
ROKU means ‘six’ in Japanese, and the gin owes its distinctive flavor to six Japanese botanicals cultivated over four seasons: Sakura flower, Sakura leaf, Yuzu peel, Sencha tea (green tea), Gyokuro tea (refined green tea) and Sansh? pepper.
In accordance with the Japanese tradition of shun, each botanical is harvested at the peak of its season to extract the best flavor. Each is then distilled separately to maintain its individual characteristics. For instance, the delicate scent of the Sakura flower is drawn out through vacuum distillation in stainless pot stills, whereas the deep flavor of Yuzu is achieved by distillation in copper pot stills.
Together with eight more traditional botanicals, the carefully crafted botanical extracts are blended by Japanese artisans to achieve ROKU’s complex, yet harmonious flavor.
As a final flourish, ROKU is presented in a hexagonal bottle with the six Japanese botanicals embossed on each if its six sides. The label is made of traditional washi paper and adorned with the Japanese kanji for ‘six’ in bold calligraphic strokes as a tribute to the Japanese values of craftsmanship that are distilled into every drop of ROKU.
Many people believe that red wine and red meat are the perfect pairing. Why is this? Suntory took a scientific approach by focusing on the sensation in the mouth to find out how and why certain foods and beverages go so well together.
In this research, people were asked to try several different combinations of food and drink. For example, they were asked to drink either oolong tea or a bitter drink, and eat salami. Afterwards, they were asked to complete a twenty-one step evaluation of the oiliness, bite (sharp flavor), and bitterness of these different combinations.
People felt less oiliness when they ate salami after drinking oolong tea. They also felt less oiliness when they drank oolong tea after eating salami, compared to when they drank the bitter drink.
The results of the sensory evaluation were clear. In this research, most people prefer a beverage with more of a bite when they eat fatty or oily food. This is one reason why oolong tea and dishes with high fat content go perfectly together.
True to our commitment to delight customers, we use scientific approaches to find the reason behind food-beverage pairings, and work to produce beverages that go perfectly with certain types of food. The results of our research will be promoted through our high-quality products, so that people can enjoy their dining experience more.
Coffee is one of the most popular beverages in the world. However, there is still no way to evaluate coffee beans without roasting them, making coffee, and drinking the coffee. Suntory has tried to find a way to evaluate raw coffee beans by studying the metabolites in high-quality beans. Through this research, we have developed a method to predict taste.
In the past, sensory analysis was used to evaluate the taste of coffee beans. However, this type of analysis was not always the most appropriate, because different people have different tastes. Suntory believed that the type and amount of metabolites in raw beans affected their flavor. With this belief, we began research to discover the metabolites that make delicious coffee.
Coffee tends to taste better with riper beans. In a collaborative project with Dr. Hiroyuki Wariishi at the Kyushu University Faculty of Arts and Science, we adapted an innovative method that allowed us to analyze over a thousand metabolites in raw coffee beans at different levels of ripeness. They found that there were higher levels of tryptophan (an amino acid) in less ripe coffee beans. Tryptophan causes the unpleasant odor in low-quality coffee, and has a negative effect on the flavor of brewed coffee. The study also identified another component (3-Methylbutanoyl Glycosides) in raw coffee beans that make the coffee taste better.
The results of the study allow Suntory to develop a technique for identifying high-quality beans while they are still raw. It also helps us develop products that take advantage of certain coffee beans. Suntory will continue to research into coffee beans, with the goal of creating the highest-quality coffee.
We always strive to improve upon our existing research and technology. Through these efforts, Suntory aims to create more innovation and enrich our consumers' lives.
In pursuit of the world's best pilsner beer, brew master Ryuzo Yamamoto and his team spent nearly ten years developing The Premium Malt's beer, with its rich flavor and elegant aromas.
Yamamoto was inspired by the famous pilsners of the Czech Republic and Germany, and built a microbrewery just for its development. Our brewers then dedicated years to finding just the right balance of malt, infused at the perfect temperature. This is how The Premium Malt's, now Japan's leading brand of premium beer, was born.
The finest ingredients and the ideal manufacturing method are critical to crafting the ideal beer. The Premium Malt's is made with carefully selected hops and malts, using a method called "double decoction," where mash is heated twice to ensure the malts' rich umami and flavor. Hops are typically boiled just once, but for The Premium Malt's, aroma and fine aroma hops are added individually to create its unique aroma. We call this technique "aroma rich hopping."
Our brewers visit the individual farms that prune the hops, conduct sensory evaluations, and select only the cones that are most suited for The Premium Malt's. And because water makes up 90% of beer, The Premium Malt's is made from quality groundwater.
Behind every satisfying sip of our beers is the perseverance, ingenuity, and passion of our Suntory brewers.
At Suntory, we believe that comprehensive research and development (R&D) is at the heart of our innovative products. Since our founding, we have consistently created new products by harnessing the power of technology and the expertise of our employees. A prime example of this is our advancements in the application of microorganisms and enzymes in making alcoholic beverages, as well as our advanced distillation technology. As we look to the future, we aim for sustainable growth through continued R&D to develop new and innovative products.
We have a diverse portfolio of quality products enjoyed by millions around the world, including alcoholic beverages, such as Yamazaki and Hibiki whiskies and The Premium Malt's beer, as well as non-alcoholic beverages, such as Suntory Oolong Tea, BOSS coffee, and Iyemon green tea.
Building on existing research related to health and wellness, such as on antioxidants and immunological control, we have developed wellness products such as Sesamin brands containing the health ingredient sesamin.
As a result of successful research and development, we have produced many new and innovative products, including Prodia and Lactect, two of our wellness products that contain the Lactobacillus S-PT84 strain discovered by Suntory.
Using biotechnology, we successfully developed the world's first blue rose in 2004, a feat that was previously considered impossible around the world. Five years later, we named the rose SUNTORY blue rose APPLAUSE, which in the language of flowers means "dreams come true."
True to our mission, "To create harmony with people and nature," we have established the Institution for Water Science to deepen our understanding of the water we use and to conserve our water resources for the future. Our research includes hydrology-based natural water cycles, the study of global water issues, water health, and water preferences.
We also serve as an information center, providing our latest research reports on water to the public.
At Suntory, R&D activities are conducted in collaboration with the R&D departments of group companies around the world.