Where did Japanese “whisky” come from?

From the Scotsman:

IN JAPAN she is considered by many as the mother of the ­domestic whisky industry. But despite being the woman who helped create the country’s own dram, she remains ­little-known in the nation of her birth.

Now Scot Rita Cowan is to make history more than 50 years after her death, after it was announced that she is to become the first non-Japanese character to be portrayed in one of the national broadcaster’s hugely popular daytime dramas.

More than 20 million people are expected to tune in later this year to watch NHK’s Massan, a 15-minute story based on the tale of Masataka Taketsuru, founder of the renowned Nikka Whisky Distilling Co, and his wife Jessie Roberta, also known as Rita.

Massan, taken from the name Rita called her husband, will focus on the Japanese man who dreamed of producing a bottle of Japanese whisky and his Scottish wife.

The story of how the couple met and married in 1920 while Masataka was studying organic chemistry at Glasgow University, learning the secrets of making Scotch, is famous in Japan.

Although I am slightly surprised at the Scotsman using “whisky” instead of “whiskey”, it doesn’t spoil the story. Some will see it as being about love and devotion conquering all. Some will see it as being about whisky and whiskey!

Read it all, here.

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