Take to the Skies

Jinkoo Imo Brand: Jinkoo

Distillery: Kitaya Co, Ltd.

Location: Yame-Shi, Fukuoka Prefecture, Kyushu Island, Japan

Grain: 83% sweet potato & 17% Japonica rice

Koji: black

Alcohol: 25% (50 proof)

Price: $$


Tasting Notes

Jinkoo, which means “perfect sky”, is a rich, lush imo shochu that has long been available on Japan Airlines (JAL) flights, at least for business class travelers. Which came first? The name or the JAL contract? This imo is distilled from Satsuma sweet potatoes from the Kagoshima Prefecture at the south end of Kyushu Island (Fukuoka is in the north of the island).

The nose of this imo, while still earthy, promises a sweetness that’s immediately delivered onto the palate. The rich flavor has a buttery mouth feel, which is both surprising and decadent. The sweetness subsides into a pleasant herbal finish that lingers with a faintly minty clean freshness.


The Verdict: Highly Recommended

The golden label evokes the rich flavor of this robust imo. While pricey, it does not disappoint. The combination of sweet and herbal flavors along with the buttery texture gives this shochu a unique place among imo. I’m looking forward to my next JAL flight. Maybe I can sneak a nip out of first class.







3 Responses to “Take to the Skies”
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  1. […] the perimeter of the high ceilinged space where we tried old favorites such as iichiko, Zuisen, Jinkoo, and Kappa No Sasoimizu, but were also introduced to a new distillery – Komasa Jyozo from […]

  2. […] this is a sake made from a highly polished rice (junmai daiginjo) from Kitaya Brewery (makers of Jinkoo imo shochu) using a special drip process (shizuku). The result is a genshu or undiluted sake, so […]

  3. […] on the shochu aisle was an end display for a sale on Kitaya’s products – particularly Jinkoo (sweet potato), Gokoo (oak aged barley), and Gyokuro (green tea). We’ve since tried their […]

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