Apr 8, 2008

How I Have Got Familiar with Sake

In the beginning, I was not very sensitive to the flavor of sake, at least knowing that there were several excellent types of sake such as ginjoshu and daiginjoshu, which are premium sake, taste excellent, and have a fragrant smell, and can be drunk smoothly.

One day, I visited a sake brewery with my friends and tasted several types of sake produced in this brewery. I noticed that these sake types tasted and smelled differently from each other in spite of the fact that they were produced in the same brewery. I think I took interest in sake at this time for the first time. Since then, I gradually have been getting interested in sake.

Later on another day, I tasted several types of sake at a sake-tasting and shopping stand set up in a department store. Then, I found a peculiar sensation in taste in one of the items sold there. I told about this sensation to the seller and he guessed and explained that it was a savor peculiar to the junmaishu, which derives from ingredient rice. From that time, I try to be aware of this distinctive savor of the junmaishu to distinguish it from other types of sake when drinking a junmaishu.

Again later, I learned that sake produced by the yamahai-jikomi method, a preparation method of a yeast starter (moto or shubo), has a complex but attractive flavor. From that time, I try to find opportunities to taste sake made by the yamahai-jikomi method. Thus, I became conscious of the method of sake by which it had been brewed when enjoying sake.

As I learn little by little such aspects of sake as described above, I get more and more interested in drinking sake and want to try more and more different types of sake. Now, I enjoy guessing what flavor and aroma specific sake has from its production place, production method, ingredient rice, and other factors.

-- Today's Sake --
Ginjoshu Shiroyamazakura from Nozakishuzo Co., Ltd (left in the photo)
This sake has a delicate aroma of ginjoshu and a flinty flavor.

Sake meter value: +5
Acidity: 1.5
Alcohol: 15 to 16%
Seimaibuai *: 50%

Kenbishi from Kenbishishuzo Co., Ltd (right in the photo)
Generally, I prefer sake produced in Nada region in Kobe City. The taste of this sake is bold.

Sake meter value: +0.5
Acidity: 1.6
Alcohol: 15.8%
Rice used: Yamada-nishiki harvested in Hyogo Pref.
Seimaibuai*: 70%

* Degree to which the rice used in brewing has been milled

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