In 1923 Shinjiro Torii opened Japans first Whisky Distillery, in Yamazaki just outside of Kyoto. The areas pure water, high humidity and climate all lend themselves to the successful maturation of whisky and Yamazaki is Japans top selling Single Malt as well as being enjoyed by whisky drinkers around the world ( I have sold it in countries as diverse as the UK and Beirut as well as in Singapore) I took the train from Osaka and after about 20 minutes I arrived in Yamazaki, I had been worried I would be unable to find the distillery once there however I shouldn’t have worried as it dominates the small town it takes its name from. They offer a free tour of the distillery every hour with several languages available on their audio guides and a local guide shows you the way around the distillery. As well as the distillery, you are able to see where they store the barrels as well as their impressive whisky library which houses 7000 different whisky’s with many available for public consumption. After the tour (and a rather expensive visit to their shop!) I tried 3 Yamazaki each made in a different cask, from a puncheon to a hogshead and a sherry cask (the latter being my favourite) before heading back for my last night in Osaka. Back in the Dotonburi, I found some great Ramen in a rich pork broth with a slice of pork loin, bamboo shoots and a deep orange boiled egg on top which I was able to order through the tried and tested method of finding a picture on the wall outside and pointing at it once inside the restaurant! From here I made a quick stop back at the hotel to collect my suitcase before getting my last Shinkansen back to Tokyo and my flight back to Singapore. What an amazing, amazing trip Japan was! Such an amazing country, with a wonderful history and culture, not to mention the lovely people and delicious food! A real country of contrasts, from the ancient temples and parks to the bright lights and neon of the bigger Cities and one I cannot wait to visit again some day!