Koji, Koji Koji
John Gaunter was again the special guest speaker and his lecture was entitled: “Without Koji, There is No Sake”. Koji is the true mystery ingredient in sake. Often called the “mold that makes the magic”, the title of the lecture couldn’t be more true. John focused on many of the interesting aspects of how koji works, how brewers work with it and also, descriptions of the unique rooms used at breweries to propagate koji mold.
This year, we had the following Breweries represented:
Meet The Brewers
- Tenzan Sake Brewing Co. (Saga)
- Asahi Sake Brewing Co. (Yamaguchi)
- Rihaku Sake Brewing Co. (Shimane)
- Imada Sake Brewing Co. (Hiroshima)
- Marumoto Sake Brewing Co. (Okayama)
- Sudo-Honke Inc. (Ibaraki)
- Tentaka Sake Brewing Co. (Tochigi)
- Okunomatsu Sake Brewing Co. (Fukushima)
- Kaetsu Sake Brewing Ltd. (Niigata)
- Tenju Sake Brewing Co., LTD (Akita)
- Akita Seishu Sake Brewing Co., LTD. (Akita)
- Nanbubijin, Inc. (Iwate)
- Takasago Sake Brewing Co. (Hokkaido)
The sakes from all the above Breweries were amazing! The news for me was some wonderful unique treats that I got to try.
One special treat was the delicious Fukucho Junmai Daiginjo “Hattansou” Muroka Genshu made by Miho Imada at the Imada Sake Brewery in Hiroshima Prefecture. This sake was unique in several ways. It was made using a lesser known sake rice “Hattansou” which I learned is a parent rice to the more well known Hattan-Nishiki rice. This leaves this sake with a wonderfully concentrated sense of flavor and aroma. I have high hopes to see this sake for sale in the US this year!
However, A rare treat for me on this night was the chance to taste Sakurai-san’s Dassai Junmai Daiginjo 39 Sparkling Nigori! This is a beautiful light bubbly brew worth savoring. Not for sale in the US, but we can hope for the future!
So many sakes were tasted and enjoyed! This was another enjoyable year at the Japan Society. This year we learned that “without Koji, there is no Sake”. Can’t wait to see where in the sake world they take us next year!