Flavor of life

Hida Takayama is a city that has preserved the feeling of a castle town, apparent by its history-filled streets with rich Japanese traditions and festivals. Thurs is one of the leading cities in manufacturing chairs and is home to many furniture brands due to its long history, craftsmanship expertise, and wood materials knowledge. Our expertise in woodwork, built over centuries, has allowed us to develop unique techniques, including wood bending.

Hida Barrels is founded to honor our 1300 years of “Hida no Takumi” legacy, also known as the Hida craftsmanship spirit. We have expanded our solid wood bending technique from furniture to barrel manufacturing to continue our legacy. We find barrel making and furniture manufacturing very similar. Both are handcrafted by highly skilled, hard-working men and women who preserve and advance the time-honored craft of artisanal barrel making and paying attention to every detail.

We believe that incorporating Hida’s craftsmanship and our love for nature makes Hida Barrel unique.



Material Sourcing

In HIDA BARREL, we source White Oak from the Great Lakes area in the United States and select Japanese Oak (Nara) from Hida, Hokkaido, and North Eastern regions in Japan as our source of material. Since we take our material very seriously, we would start by carefully assessing the growing environment of the forest before we ship and purchase the logs from our supplier.

While it may be more cost-effective and less time-consuming to source pre-cut materials locally, we believe that by directly sourcing logs and processing them in-house, we can maximize the use of the material and control the quality of the wood and product under our supervision.

Our craftsmen have a keen eye for selecting suitable materials and are skilled in processing them according to the wood's grain pattern. Choosing the right material to prevent leakage and cracks in the barrel to the lowest is crucial in barrel manufacturing.


Utilizing the Solid Wood Bending technique

The wood is naturally seasoned for an extended period in our facility in Takayama. Since we manage and control our inventory, we can ensure our material is seasoned properly and be able to choose and select the best material for our barrel production.

After selecting the material, we would then process the material using the traditional wood bending technique, which is widely used in furniture making in the Hida Takayama area. The wood bending technique involves steaming the wood at high temperatures and using jigs (iron molds used to bend the steamed timber) to create a curved, bent piece. This highly technical technique requires considerable manual and mechanical skills, producing curved results from a single rod of wood and obtaining a strong and elegant barrel without any joints needed.

This delicate bending wood technique is well-suited for the unique and gently curved shape of barrels, enabling us to create barrels that are not only visually appealing but also durable, intricate, and long-lasting.


A new creation of Hida’s craftsmanship

The distinctive features of HIDA BARREL's barrels are their aesthetical design and the need for high precision during manufacturing. Utilizing the wood bending technique allows us to precisely assemble the barrel without any gaps, which also prevents any leakage, unlike any other barrels in the market that require filling between the main body and the lid. This is the result of the heritage and tradition that our Hida artisans have passed down, and we also take pride in the fact that our barrels cannot be replicated anywhere else.

Just as Hida craftsmanship creates furniture that enriches people's lives worldwide, we hope our barrels crafted by Hida artisans will elevate the stories and flavor every distillery wants to deliver.


Showcasing the skills and aesthetic sense of Hida's craftsmanship in modern lifestyle

Nissin Mokkou was founded in 1946 in Hida Takayama. As a furniture brand located in Takayama, we are devoted to inheriting and passing down the skills and spirit of the "Hida no Takumi" (Hida craftsmanship) to our craftsman and to our consumers through our products. What makes Nissin the Nissin that we see today is our evidential craftsmanship. ls. Our success is attributed to our unique vision in craftsmanship and our excellent use of material, especially our signature technique, the solid wood bending technique. In order to pass down Hida’s tradition, we should always adhere to the traditions and stay innovative. Starting our whiskey barrel business allows Hida's craftsmanship to be shown more diversely and be known in more channels.

  • Applying Hida’s craftsmanship to Japanese whiskey production

    In my opinion, tradition is not our obstacle to modernization. My vision for Nissin has always been to be creative, innovative, and open-minded to finding new ways to showcase our tradition and craftsmanship. Applying Hida’s craftsmanship in barrel production is our first step into showcasing our tradition in a new product form apart from furniture and architectural settings.

    Barrel manufacturing requires the same level of woodwork skills, knowledge, and expertise as furniture manufacturing. Since the barrel's quality significantly affects the whiskey's flavor, the charring and the type of wood utilized for barrel production must be on point to produce the right color and flavor of whiskey the distillery requested. For the past 77 years of Nissin Mokkou’s founding, we have continuously evolved between inheriting traditions and being innovative, I wish HIDA BARREL would be the next product for Nissin to convey our passion and expertise in craftsmanship and Japanese whiskey to whiskey distilleries and lovers around the world.

    Takuya Kitamura
    CEO of Nissin Mokkou

  • Hida Takayama x Hida Craftsmanship x Nissin Mokkou

    Hida no Takumi (Hida Craftsmanship) is named associate with craftsmen with exceptional woodworking skills and talent. The pride of Hida’s craftsmanship travels back 1300 years ago. During the Nara period in Japan, the central government imposed taxes on items such as rice. However, as a special exemption, the Hida region was exempted from taxes in exchange for sending skilled craftsmen to the capital to construct temples and shrines.

    These craftsmen, who demonstrated extraordinary skills, became highly valued and gradually became known as "Hida no Takumi" or "Hida's Artisans."Over a period of approximately 500 years, more than 40,000 craftsmen from Hida contributed to constructing historical monuments that still exist today, such as the Yakushiji Temple, Todaiji Temple, and Heijo-kyo (The ancient name of the Nara Castle Town). As time progressed, Hida’s craftsmanship and reputation have been passed down since then and helped nurture to shape the Hida woodworking culture we see today. Moreover, the Hida region is also home to a range of furniture brands, Nissin Mokkou included, and is renowned as one of Japan's major furniture manufacturing areas.