Tasting – Gokyo Mison

I love the fact that this sake exists. Gokyo maker Sakai Shuzo is an old, respectable sake maker that excels at making sake. Sakai isn’t a marketing powerhouse like Dassai’s Asahi Shuzo or Ohmine. Sakai makes sake, and makes it well. Even Gokyo fustsushu is good. They tend to avoid most fads pretty well, but they do make fizzy sake. And then, there are their crazy, nutty experimental sakes.

I have talked about Gokyo 5 series, in which they used awamori koji and shochu koji to see what it does (hint: it makes it SUPER SOUR). This is another series, I guess, with similar labels but using different ingredients to see what happens. There’s one, Mirin, that uses mochi rice to see what happens, and Wain that uses wine yeast. Then there’s Mi:son (ミーソン) that uses miso koji, hence the cute name and the do-re-MI-SO note logo (get it?). This is a junmai with a seimaibuai of 90% (!!!) so right off the bat I was expecting big, complex flavors.

I was right. The sake has an initial banana aroma, but in the mouth there is a much more bold mixture of flavors than your usual junmai. The sourness is assertive but not as sharp as the 5 series, and it’s balanced by rich umami that is really quite mouth watering. The finish holds a lingering astringency and deep-bellied sweetness that is not cloying, but does stick around a bit.

Mi:son Junmai, seimaibuai 90%, made with miso koji

This is a sake for meaty meals and salty cheeses, for sure, and is definitely best enjoyed in warmer ranges: room temperature or above, rather than fresh out of the fridge.

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