Alcohol percentage: 16%
The best consumption temperature: 5°C – 10°C
Sake Rice: Yamada Nishiki
Rice polishing ratio: 35%
Storage: Avoid direct sunlight and be refrigerated
Food pairings: whitefish, poached chicken, citrus, oyster
Takagi Shuzo is the former name of Okuhidashuzo. It is nothing related to another Takagi Brewery, a brewery in Yamagata which its flagship sake is known as Jyuuyondai “十四代”. When speaking of Okuhida, the hot springs and beef there are always the first things to be missed, but in fact, Okuhidashuzo has more than 300 years of history as a sake brewery since the Edo period.
To introduce this bottle of sake, it is inevitable to talk about Tobin gakoi, one of the pressing methods in sake brewing process. It is well known that at the end of brewing, the liquor needs to be separated from the lees. Usually, the filter press is used to separate moromi into sake and sake kasu by pressing.
For some high-end sake, sake brewing follows a more natural method “drip-pressing”, or known as Fukurozuri. As the name suggests, moromi is packed in a canvas bag, and with gravity, sake is dripped out of the bags like iced drip coffee. Tobin is a traditional Japanese glass jug with 18 liters, which is used to collect sake.
This labor-intensive and time-consuming method is not only to preserve the tradition but also to enrich its flavour. Aroma overflows right at the moment you open the sake.
Preliminary possesses the character of junmai daiginjo.
Junmai daiginjo is a rare and precious sake. When I chatted with my friends, we sigh that high-end sake is out of this world. How many sake lovers are fascinated by Its refreshing aroma of ginjo. The lower the rice polishing rate, the less starchy the outer layer of rice. Yeast cannot absorb enough nutrients, and abnormal metabolism occurs during low-temperature fermentation, which entitles it such a special floral and fruity aroma.
Hatsumidori is the top range sake within the brewery, and it also has a similar flavour to other premium sake. The first sip is like fresh sweet spring water, gliding over the tip of the tongue. Different from the light-bodied gratification, the fresh fruity aroma comes up before the nose touches the mouth of the cup. It is approachable, everything is well-balanced, almost can’t feel the dryness of alcohol, only sweet aftertaste lasts.
(Disclaimer: The author has given consent to Sakeholic for re-posting and translating, the original passage can be found on the author’s Weibo. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the viewpoint of the website and its company.)