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August 20, 2021

Diageo’s Roe & Co Japanese Sugi Irish whiskey – Product Launch

The latest whiskey from Diageo's Dublin distillery uses a special maturation process to impart a "unique" flavour.

By Andy Morton

  • Category – Spirits, whiskey, Irish, 46% abv
  • Available – From this month
  • Location – Available in the UK and Ireland, as well as online through the brand’s website
  • Price – SRP of EUR80 (US$94) per 70cl bottle

Diageo has released an Irish whiskey from its Roe & Co brand that has been matured in Japanese wood.

Roe & Co Irish Whiskey Japanese Sugi is aged for an unspecified period in barrels made from sugi wood, which is a type of Japanese cedar. A different maturation process has been used, which involves elongating the length of the bungs – or stoppers – and adding five of these to each cask.

According to Diageo, this increases the surface area of the wood and results in a “unique” flavour profile, including wood spice and tropical fruits.

“We wanted to create something really special for this innovation and really stretch our imagination as to what we can achieve technically,” said Roe & Coe head distiller Lora Hemy. “East Asian wood species offer unique … aromatic compounds and the toasted sugi in particular really brings out flavours notes of matcha tea, toasted sandalwood, lychee, orris root and treacle toffee.”

Diageo started production at the Roe & Co distillery, located beside the Guinness brewery in Dublin, in 2019. At the time, the group claimed the distillery was the 27th in operation in Ireland.

Diageo Performance Trends 2017-2021 – Click here for results data

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