James Millar has been awarded a Foreign Minister's Commendation in recognition of his work in "promoting mutual understanding between Japan and the United Kingdom".
Mr Millar, a visiting lecturer at Robert Gordon University (RGU) in Aberdeen, named his fusion whisky The Glover after Scottish Samurai Thomas Blake Glover.
He has also contributed to the establishment of the first Scottish Government cross-party group on Japan, the creation of a Japanese language group and created links between RGU and Japan.
He said: "I am very honoured that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs thought my work was worthy enough to warrant this prestigious commendation.
"I have always been a great admirer of Japan and it has been pleasing to see our two countries come closer together through each of the projects I have worked on.
"I would not have been able to get this far without the help of my family, friends and colleagues, so I would like to thank them for their incredible support over the years."
Mr Millar co-founded Fusion Whisky Ltd to continue to develop blends.
Professor Lesley Diack, from RGU's school of pharmacy and life sciences, said: "All of us who have worked alongside Jim over the years would like to extend our warmest congratulations his way.
"His efforts have been invaluable in supporting RGU's partnerships with Japanese institutions and strengthening links between our two countries. He is a more-than-worthy recipient of this honour."