Beam Suntory’s International Oaksmith Is Set To Revolutionise India’s Premium Spirits Market
Image Credit: Beam Suntory; Oaksmith is India’s first international blended whisky

The success trail of premium spirits brand Beam Suntory is as inspiring as it can be and strives to ‘grow for good’. By forging human connections, the company is crossing new milestones to emerge as the most admired and fastest growing premium spirits company in the world. They credit this growth to quality craftsmanship and their entrepreneurial zeal.

A subsidiary of Osaka-based Suntory, the company takes pride in being the ‘custodians of legacies measured in centuries’. Its history dates back to as early as 1795. Truly a global company, Beam Suntory has offices, distilleries and sales organisations spread across different nations. 

Cut to the global brand’s India story, Beam Suntory has recently pulled the wraps off what is described as India’s first international blended whisky - Oaksmith. Launched in December 2019, the premium whisky packs the best of east and west in a bottle. A celebratory blend of mastery and global collaboration, Oaksmith is a world-class whisky. This first-of-its-kind international whisky is a harmonious blend that brings together the best of three countries - Scotland, the US and impeccable Japanese craftsmanship. 

There are two blends specially crafted for India - Oaksmith Gold and Oaksmith International. Its taste is rich, smooth and uniquely international. It is a unique blend of Scotch Malt Whiskies and Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey. Interestingly, some of these are procured from distilleries that are more than 200 years old. As a result, the taste is rich, smooth and uniquely international. Staying true to the Beam Suntory standards of purity and authenticity, Oaksmith has no artificial flavours and aroma. It is a unique modern-day scotch and bourbon blend, boasting a perfectly balanced yet complex, layered whisky that is innovative and extraordinary. 

A distinctive creation by the legendary Shinji Fukuyo, who is also the Chief Blender at Suntory Spirits Limited, Oaksmith is the best example of impeccable  Japanese craftsmanship. Speaking about the blend, Shinji Fukuyo says, “I travelled across India to understand the different food cultures and flavours. Eventually what I saw, heard and tasted, helped me explore a variety of flavour profiles and finalise this harmonious blend. I am extremely proud as the final product completely reimagines what the future of Indian whisky can be.” 

Thanks to his experience of over 30 years in crafting globally recognised, award-winning blends, Shinji is the brains behind Japan’s iconic spirit brands – Yamazaki and  Hibiki . These blends have a strong role to play in placing Japanese whiskies on the world map. Oaksmith is highly influenced by gemba that translates to ‘the real place’ in Japanese. It resonates specifically with Indian audiences, while being truly international in spirit.

Within a few months of its launch, Oaksmith is already setting a strong foothold in the Indian spirits market, inspiring Beam Suntory to aim for a $1 billion annual revenue by 2030. To help meet this goal, the brand is looking at underpinning its portfolio in northern India, particularly in places like Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Chandigarh, Rajasthan and Punjab. This is considered a major step in Beam Suntory’s growth strategy in the sub-continent. This further strengthens the alcoholic beverages giant’s commitment to lead the growth and premiumisation of the Indian spirit’s market. 

A celebratory ode to the impeccable Japanese craftsmanship, Oaksmith® Gold is an iconic brand starting off from India, bringing in an unmatched international experience with every sip.

Recognising the brand’s innovation, contribution and commitment toward revolutionising the spirits market, Beam Suntory was also honoured with international  awards for its two premium blends - Oaksmith Gold and Oaksmith International. In 2021, these whisky brands won the ‘Gold and Double Gold at Annual SIP Awards’ in California, the US. They were judged on the metrics of aroma, taste and finish, whey the brands competed with more than 1,000 brands from 49 countries. Meanwhile in California, the brands won a bronze at the 4th London Spirits Competition for quality, value and packaging.