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Dear WHISKY presents “Whisky Summit at Nishi-Karuizawa 2022″

2022.08.12 / 最終更新日:2023.02.18

We are pleased to announce the Whisky Summit at Nishi-Karuizawa 2022 will take place on the 20th of August, 2022. This event offers a great opportunity for producers, connectors, and drinkers in the whisky industry to share and rediscover their takes on the charms of whisky.


Whisky Summit at Nishi-Karuizawa 2022

In 1924, Japan’s first malt whisky distillery was completed in Yamazaki, Osaka. Almost 100 years later, Japanese whisky is recognised as one of the world’s greatest whiskies, and now whiskyThe Water of Lifeis once again attracting international attention. This time, the producers, connectors, and consumers will come together to rediscover and share their own perspectives on the charms of whisky in Miyota, a place associated with the former Karuizawa Whisky.

*The event venue, MMoP (1794-1 Maseguchi, Miyota City, Kitasaku District, Nagano, Japan 389-0207), is the former site of Mercian’s Karuizawa Whisky Distillery.

Guest Speakers

This event will feature a range of guest speakers from the whisky community. This includes Ms. Ola Lopatowska from Stravaig Spirits in Scotland to represent the producers and Mr. Masahiko Hashiwaki, the owner of Bar REM in Nishi-Karuizawa, to represent the connectors. Joining the event as the representative of the consumers is Mr. Iehiro Tokugawa, the nineteenth head of the Tokugawa clan and the chairman of Tokugawa Memorial Foundation. As a special guest, we will welcome Mr. Kotaro Taketsuru, the grandson of Masataka Taketsuru who was the pioneer of Japanese whisky. Mr. Koichi Honda from amana Inc., who is the head of MMoP project promotion, will be a moderator of the event.


Special Guest:Kotaro Taketsuru

The representative of productive development at Taketsuru Shuzou and an adviser for The Japan Scotland Association. He spent his childhood in Yoichi, Hokkaido, with his grandparents Masataka and Rita Taketsuru. Masataka Taketsuru is the founder of Nikka Whisky and is known as the father of Japanese whisky. After working for Nikka, he is currently involved in branding and product production as an advisor to numerous companies.


Moderator:Koichi Honda

The head of MMoP project promotion at amana Inc.


Producer:Ola Lopatowska

The co-founder Stravaig Spirits. Ola has been involved in the whisky industry in Scotland as a professional in bottling and sales for many years. In 2022, Stravaig Spirits launched a bottling service for Japanese customers in collaboration with Crea Life Partners Inc., which operates Dear WHISKY®.


Connector:Masahiko Hashiwaki


Master of Bar REM in Saku, Nagano. He was a disciple of Mr. Hisashi Kishi, the former president of the Nippon Bartenders’ Association. With a bottle line-up of over 8,000 whiskies and 400 bottles of bourbon, the bar attracts whisky lovers from all over Japan. During the event, he will offer tasting whiskies at a tentative bar.


Consumer:Iehiro Tokugawa

The nineteenth head of the Tokugawa clan. He has published numerous books as an international political and economic commentator based on his experience living in the USA, Europe, and Asia. He spends his summer in Karuizawa every year and is a well-known whisky enthusiast.


14:30 – 15:00:Doors Open

*Welcome drinks (champagne, non-alcoholic drinks, and soft drinks) and light meals will be available.

15:00 – 17:00:Whisky Summit at Nishi-Karuizawa 2022


2.Keynote Speech by Mr. Kotaro Taketrusu
“The Life of Masataka Taketsuru and Japanese Whisky”

3.Panel Discussion by Ms. Ola Lopatowska, Mr. Masahiko Hashiwaki, and Mr. Iehiro Tokugawa
“The Charm of Whisky From the Perspectives of Producers, Connectors, and Consumers”

4.Free conversation

Event Information

– Date :August 20th, 2022 (Saturday) 15:00~17:00
– Venue :MMoP, “STEAK HOUSE Feu”
1794-1 Maseguchi, Miyota City, Kitasaku District, Nagano, Japan 389-0207
– Sponsor :Crea Life Partners Inc. / Dear WHISKY®
– Number of Visitors :30
– Format :In-person

This event will be associated with the Asama International Photo Festival 2022 PHOTO MIYOTA (held from Saturday, July 16th to Sunday, September 4th 10:00~17:00), for which Dear WHISKY® is a sponsor.

For more details, click here.

Application Form

To sign up for the event, click here

Deadline: 15 August 2022 (Mon)

Winners Notice:  16 August 2022 (Tue)

The Asama International Photo Festival 2022 PHOTO MIYOTA

– Date :From July 16th, 2022 (Saturday) to September 4th, 2022 (Sunday), Closed on Wednesdays

*The outdoor exhibition can be viewed freely.

– Time :10:00-17:00(Last admission for indoor exhibitions: 16:30)
– Venue :MMoP, 1794-1 Maseguchi, Miyota City, Kitasaku District, Nagano, Japan 389-0207
– Ticket :Some areas may charge an admission fee

[Organiser] Asama International Photo Festival Executive Committee

For more information, click here.


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