A Great Yamaguchi Sakagura Update

Things go quick once you actually decide to do something with them.

As of the last mention of this project, I had yet to even confirm the actual number of kura in Yamaguchi. I asked around and was eventually recommended to the national tax bureau, since they’re the ones that actually license and monitor kura. Lo and behold, the local tax office just down the block actually provided me with a current (paper) map of every running brewery in the prefecture!

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Basically unscannable! But still useful.

Huzzah!

Also, poking around led me to local, recently defunct ones which…well, that’ll be a post for another day.

So then, here are the details. As of the tax map, there are 44 (actually maybe only 43) breweries operating in Yamaguchi. That does not count a couple of agricultural high schools that have brewing programs, nor does it include distilleries that make brewer’s alcohol, nor beer breweries.

I took the info from that map, put it into Google and now we have this!

This google map is as accurate as I can make it so far. It has all the operating breweries and their main labels, as well as a couple of prominent ones that seem to be out of business.

Please be aware, many of these breweries are small local business and NONE of them accept drop in visitors. If you want to tour a brewery, stick to major ones with websites and make an appointment. (Most of the Iwakuni ones do this, and in Tokuyama Hatsumomiji does for sure).

As time goes by I’ll be adding m okore info such as my reviews, visit updates, and pictures when possible.

What do you think?

8 thoughts on “A Great Yamaguchi Sakagura Update

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    1. Hallo Klaus!

      Vielen dank für die Infos! Wo in Deutschland leben Sie? Ich habe in Siegen und Berlin studiert.

      That is a pretty thorough resource, thanks! It looks like a lot of that came directly from outdated tax authority info, though, since there are a couple of closed kura. There are also some industrial alcohol distillers, school brewing programs, and such so take care with that list if you’re ever in Yamaguchi.

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      1. Hallo Jim,

        Das freut mich zu hören. Ich lebe weit entfernt sowohl von Siegen als auch von Berlin, nämlich in Bayern.

        My wife is from Kagawa Prefecture. My regional interest in sake focuses on Shikoku and Chugoku regions. When I stay in Kagawa, my work is less arduous than yours as there are only seven kura.

        Some time ago, japansake.or.jp provided a kuramoto map for each prefecture. Actually, it was not a map but a list in English. They seem to have deleted this. All that is left is a rather plain list like this.

        http://www.japansake.or.jp/common/outline/pdf/kumiaiin/35.pdf

        Best wishes

        Klaus

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  1. Burghausen. That is the place where the poor Polish princess had to spend the rest of her life after she married the last of our rich dukes back in 1475. (cf. „Landshuter Hochzeit“).

    I noticed that the lists mentioned in my last reply may also be outdated. For instance, for Ehime, the number of breweries is too high (they list four defunct ones). Whereas for Kochi, the number given (17) is too low: Nr 18 got revived by an effort taken by local citizens.

    Just back in July, we took a sightseeing walk through the small city of Takehara in Eastern Hiroshima prefecture (by the way, just two days before the flood). The Taketsuru Brewery communicated very clearly that they do not accept visitors at all, under no circumstances („no entry“). On the other hand, Fujii Shuzo run a shop inside their building which is very much directed towards the sale of their Ryusei brand. You don‘t have to apply to get in. Same thing could be said about Suishin Brewery in Mihara.

    Found a bottle of Dassai 39 in my cellar and will drink it to your health soon.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, our friends there act as local tour guides so we got a lot of local history! It’s a beautiful town, in a beautiful Land.

      Unfortunately, lists like these are in need of constant updating. The current state of the sake industry is in extreme flux, so it’s hard to keep up. Even the tax authorities are hard pressed to keep records of who is actually in business right now.

      As I go I’ll be updating with information on brewery visits as I find out for myself. It can be a bit tricky–some places are, as you say, welcoming of visitors as customers, and some may see them as distractions, and yet others may just need to be in the right mood!

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      1. So I look forward to reading your reviews. Keep them coming!

        Don’t know if I will actually make it to Yamaguchi prefecture on our next trip. But at least, I can give their sakes a try in the antenna shop in Nihombashi, Tokyo.

        Liked by 1 person

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