The new SUI Gin by Suntory joins its earlier sibling Roku Gin to offer a taste of Japan in a bottle with its notes of yuzu, green tea, and ginger.
Leading Japanese beverage producer Suntory moved into making gin in a big way when it debuted Roku Gin back in 2017. That premium gin was a veritable taste of Japan in a bottle; among the botanicals used in its making were the leaves and flowers of the iconic sakura cherry blossom, yuzu peel, sansho pepper, and even sencha and gyokuro teas.
To be exact, Roku isn’t Suntory’s first-ever gin. That honour belongs to Suntory’s Hermes Dry Gin, a London Dry-style gin first introduced in 1936. But that never took off.
Things have changed since. Japanese ingredients and flavours, perhaps once deemed too Oriental and exotic for some, are now commonplace and highly-desired. Which may explain why Roku Gin was very well-received during its launch a few years ago.
But one successful gin, apparently, is not enough for the House of Suntory. Earlier this year Suntory introduced another gin, SUI Gin, into its burgeoning spirits line-up. Like its earlier sibling Roku Gin, SUI is made with eight more traditional gin botanicals – juniper berry, coriander seed, angelica root, cardamom, cinnamon, bitter orange peel, and lemon peel – but also the addition of three signature Japanese botanicals in yuzu, green tea, and giner (as opposed to Roku’s six).
The result is a younger and brasher gin. Not quite harsh, but definitely assertive. The yuzu offers refreshing citrus, the green tea some bitter tannins, while the ginger gives a subtle spicy bite. The mouthfeel is rich and full, with a long, dry and umami finish.
It’s so robust, in fact, that Suntory’s recommended serve is a gin soda, as opposed to a gin and tonic. Just add some garnish – yuzu peel, grated ginger, or a squeeze of lemon – to amplify those botanical flavours. It certainly has the capacity to be used for cocktails, especially being more affordable than the more refined Roku.
Oh yes, SUI (翆) comes from the Japanese kanji for kingfisher. But it also means emerald-green, which is why the gin’s hexagonal-shaped bottle is accented in blue-green.
SUI Gin 翆 is now available islandwide at a recommended retail price of S$57 from all major online and offline retailers such as Cold Storage, Giant, Don Don Donki, Meidi-Ya, SPC, Pandamart, Wines and Spirits, Thirsty Donkey, iShopChangi, Shopee, and more.
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