Episodes
In episode 54 of the Japan Distilled podcast, we discuss something that is almost never talked about in spirits. Dilution. Nearly all distilled beverage alcohol has water added before bottling. Why is that? And why is it so incredibly important in Japan?
Published 03/03/23
In the 53rd episode of the Japan Distilled podcast, we complete Jokichi Takamine's improbable journey and reflect on his legacy. This is the 2nd in a 2 part series so if you missed episode 52, we recommend you go back and have a listen about Jokichi Takamine's formative years.
Published 02/16/23
In the 52nd episode of the Japan Distilled podcast, we take you through the foundational years of the improbable and remarkable journey of the first Japanese person to ever make whiskey: Jokichi Takamine. It's probably not too much to say that Jokichi Takamine is the most important Japanese immigrant to ever live in the United States. His whiskey is just a small part of his story.
Published 02/03/23
In our 51st episode we take stock of things and decide to reflect on the effects alcohol has on our bodies while considering ways to more safely enjoy these drinks we know and love.
Published 01/17/23
In 50th episode we have a little spirits Q&A fun with our hosts answering listener questions about topics ranging from underrated distilleries to Casper the Friendly Ghost.
Published 12/30/22
In episode 49, our hosts profile Furusawa Distillery, the only distillery in Japan that has had not just one, but two female presidents. Includes a brief interview with current toji, Masako Furusawa, who is the 5th generation owner.
Published 12/24/22
In episode 48, our hosts have a little fun by jumping into the weird, unusual, or shall we even say, uncanny shochu styles that make up a sliver of the category, but make shochu such an odd spirit to categorize.
Published 12/06/22
In episode 47, our hosts move beyond WTO Geographic Indications and begin exploring regional styles that do not have GI protection. Easily, the one most associated with a specific region is Oita 100% barley shochu.
Published 11/17/22
In episode 46 of the Japan Distilled podcast, our hosts tackled a a thorny topic. The concept of terroir in spirits.
Published 10/28/22
In the 45th episode of the Japan Distilled podcast, your host Stephen Lyman has a fun chat with the founders of Africa's first shochu, Tanuki. Brought to South Africa by founders Brock Kuhlman and Ulrich Terblanche.
Published 10/14/22
In episode 44, our hosts finish a 3 part series into the WTO Geographic Indications with a deep dive into Satsuma Shochu, the Bordeaux of the Japanese spirits world.
Published 09/27/22
In episode 43, our hosts continue a 3 part exploration into the WTO Geographic Indications for shochu made in Kyushu and surrounding islands. For this episode, we dive into Iki Shochu in particular.
Published 09/10/22
In episode 42, our hosts begin a 3 part exploration into the World Trade Organization Geographic Indications for shochu made in Kyushu and surrounding islands. For this episode, we dive into Kuma Shochu in particular.
Published 08/25/22
In episode 41 of the Japan Distilled podcast, your hosts Christopher Pellegrini and Stephen Lyman roll up their sleeves and dive back into a very specific aspect of alcohol production: the absolute necessity of yeast.
Published 08/12/22
In episode 40 of the Japan Distilled podcast, your hosts Christopher Pellegrini and Stephen Lyman tackle the scintillating topic of absolutely absurd liquor laws in the United States. While this episode is very US-focused, we promise the episode will be entertaining for listeners worldwide who may enjoy listening to a couple of Yanks poke fun at their countrymen.
Published 07/27/22
In episode 39 of the Japan Distilled podcast, your hosts Christopher Pellegrini and Stephen Lyman introduce you to the most powerful toji guild in Japanese history, the Kurose Toji. This guild absolutely revolutionized and subsequently professionalized shochu production in the 20th century. And yet today, the guild has nearly disappeared with just a few remaining master brewer-distillers keeping their former powerhouse from going extinct.
Published 07/05/22
In episode 38 of the Japan Distilled podcast, your hosts Christopher Pellegrini and Stephen Lyman dive into national mold of Japan. Without koji (aspergillus oryzae, kawachi, or awamori) there would not be a Japanese culinary tradition as we understand it today. Nor would there be the Japanese spirits we all know and love.
Published 06/29/22
In the 37th episode of the Japan Distilled podcast, your host Stephen Lyman has a wide ranging conversation with Elliot Faber of Sundays Spirits in Hong Kong. His journey from Calgary to Scotland to Hong Kong is a winding road of adventure, opportunity, and hard work.
Published 06/16/22
In the 36th episode of the Japan Distilled podcast, your host Stephen Lyman takes you on an auditory journey, exploring the evening work in a handmade shochu distillery. This is a departure from our usual Japan Distilled podcast as we enlist the voice over assistance of our editor Rich Pav who also incorporated all of the music and sound effects. This is part 3 in this 3 part series encompassing a day in the life of a shochu distillery. EVENING WORK CREDITS Theme Song: Begin Anywhere by...
Published 05/27/22
In the 34th episode of the Japan Distilled podcast, your host Stephen Lyman takes you on an auditory journey, working the afternoon shift in a handmade shochu distillery. This is a pretty sharp departure from our usual Japan Distilled podcast as we enlist the voice over assistance of our editor Rich Pav who also incorporated all of the music and sound effects. This is part 1 in a planned 3 part series encompassing a day in the life of a shochu distillery. MORNING SHIFT CREDITS Theme Song:...
Published 05/13/22
In the 34th episode of the Japan Distilled podcast, your host Stephen Lyman takes you on an auditory journey, working the morning shift in a handmade shochu distillery. This is a pretty sharp departure from our usual Japan Distilled podcast as we enlist the voice over assistance of our editor Rich Pav who also incorporated all of the music and sound effects. This is part 1 in a planned 3 part series encompassing a day in the life of a shochu distillery. Credits Chill Wave by Kevin MacLeod ...
Published 04/27/22
Episode 34 is taking a little longer than usual to write, record, and edit, but we truly hope it will be worth the wait. It's the first in a 3 part series that we are very excited to share with you. Stephen has been working at the Yamatozakura shochu distillery in Ichiki, Kagoshima, every fall for almost a decade and we've decided to try take you on a journey through a day in the life of the distillery. Narrated by Rich Pav of Uncanny Robot. The series will be broken into three parts: ...
Published 04/20/22
In the 33rd episode of the Japan Distilled podcast, your host Stephen Lyman has a conversation with Joshin Atone of The SG Shochu. The conversation ranges from NY cocktail culture to Shanghai speakeasies to Joshin serving his first drink at the age of four. The meandering conversation is full of great info for everyone from the shochu curious novice to the professional bartender.
Published 04/06/22
In episode 32 of the Japan Distilled podcast, your hosts Christopher Pellegrini and Stephen Lyman tackle the mysterious world of spirits cuts. It turns out these are not so mysterious and experienced distillers use a number of variables to determine "the cuts" ... listen in for more details.
Published 03/22/22
In the 31th episode of the Japan Distilled podcast, your host Stephen Lyman interviewers the founders and owners of Umami Mart in Oakland, California. What started as a blog has turned into a near national direct to consumer Japanese alcohol business and a neighborhood bar/liquor store.
Published 03/08/22