his new release from the Islay distillery of Bowmore offers something genuinely unique - a Scotch single malt that has been matured in Japanese mizunara oak. This is the first whisky of its kind and stems from the fact that Bowmore is owned by Beam Suntory, the biggest whisky producer in Japan. Mizunara oak is rare and only grows in northern Japan and small areas of China and Russia. Trees are very slow growing and take 200 years to reach full size. Because of this Beam Suntory only make around 100 such casks per year and runs a sustainability programme to replant saplings for future generations.