Tatsu no O – Tasting

If you read my Monday post about the Great Yamaguchi Sakagura Project, you might recognize this name. Tatsu no O is the main label of Otoko Jiman Shuzo (JP only), the one non-association member kura I’ve found in Yamaguchi. It’s also one of the kura I hadn’t tried yet, so boom, another one bites the dust!

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This is a small kura in the Shin-nanyo area of Shunan, meaning it’s one town over from me but still a good 45 minute drive. I plan to visit when the trains are running again, but for now I’ll have to settle for merely drinking their sake. How I suffer!

This particular bottle of Tatsu no O (Dragon’s Tail) is a junmai ginjo. They use Yamadanishiki rice milled to 50% for this brew.

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The label is also a nicely textured Washi paper so you can tell they’re working on upping that premium feeling for this one, too. I expect I’ll be hearing more about Otoko Jiman (A Man’s Boast, loosely translated) in the future.

So how was the sake?

The initial aroma was subdued, a balance of fresh rice and mild melon sweetness. The flavor was more of the same, with a solid punch of sour and a hefty umami aftertaste.

The finish was also a bit rough, with some lingering astringency.

I think, as with many junmai sakes, this one benefits from some kind of accompaniment. I tried a slice of gouda, and it went really well. The creamy flavor helped to clear out the astringency and punch up the umami, making for a more balanced and overall smoother drink.

I can see this going well with rich foods like grilled meats and vegetables or simple Japanese cuisine, more than complexly spiced cooking like in Italian or such.

It was a well crafted, interesting and imminently drinkable sake. Definitely one to put Otoko Jiman on the higher end of the brewery scales.

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