Tasting – Taka Tokubetsu Junmai Jikagumi

My first fresh bottle of sake this year is Taka's Tokubetsu Junmai Jikagumi 60, a fresh Shinshu just for this season. Taka Tokubetsu Junmai Jikagumi, 60 Seimaibuai, Yamaguchi-Grown Yamada Nishiki Another jikagumi! For those who missed it from the Ageo ode, jikagumi sake is bottled directly from a wood press, as yet another variation of... Continue Reading →

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... Continue Reading →

Tasting – Hinoshita Muso Junmai Koshu

Murashige Shuzo of Iwakuni is gaining attention with a wide range of new products, mostly in their Kinkan Kuromatsu label. The Hinoshita Muso label is a bit more adventurous, and this bottle is a particularly adventurous one. Hinoshita Muso Kimoto Junmai 60 Saito no Shizuku This is a junmai kimoto with a 60% seimaibuai, already... Continue Reading →

Tasting – Abu no Tsuru Goya

Abu no Tsuru is a little sakagura on the Sea of Japan side of Yamaguchi, and it produces some wonderful sake. This one is a very nice junmai with a seimaibuai of 58%. The King of Visual Pun Labels The new kuramoto and toji, Ryutaro Miyoshi, was formerly a designer and brings those skills to... Continue Reading →

Tasting – Nishinoseki Tekishu

On my recent trip to Oita prefecture, I went into a local liquor shop and asked for the most "Oita" sake they had, and this is what was recommended. Nishinoseki, from Kayashima Shuzo in eastern Oita, is apparently the top-selling sake brand in the prefecture, and can be found all over the place in northern... Continue Reading →

Fun with Koshu

Koshu, or aged sake, is a tricky thing. It's a big, popular topic right now, and everyone is talking about how amazing it can be, but it's also kind of a mixed bag. It can be funky, and off-putting, and sometimes downright undrinkable. One I tried was described as having notes of soy sauce, earth,... Continue Reading →

Tasting – Kinsuzume

Kinsuzume from Horie Sakaba in Iwakuni is getting a lot of buzz from local sake lovers, but the only reason I can get from anyone is that it's good. It is good! But I don't know why everyone is excited over goodness anymore. There is a ton of good Yamaguchi sake these days, so it... Continue Reading →

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