Shinjiro Torii opened the Kotobukiya Liquor Shop in Osaka in 1899. He loved Western drinks, and so began to import wines from Spain. In the following years, Shinjiro began creating his own flavoured and sweetened Spanish wines, and he eventually began marketing his products for their supposed medicinal value. His passion for Western drinks led him to build Japan's first whisky distillery, Yamazaki, which was founded in 1923 just outside of Kyoto. The name of Shinjiro Torii's company was later changed to Suntory, and today the brand owns some of the world's greatest distilleries.