Japan’s Cup Sake Smackdown!

Grand Prix winner!

Grand Prix winner!

Did you know that there is a cup sake competition held each year in Tokyo, Japan? It’s like the Oscars of one cup sake and every year a new winner emerges to claim the champions “cup”!

The award is actually shaped more light an old time-y Edison light bulb than a sake cup, but it certainly is an impressive award to display in the old trophy case back at the brewery.

Sponsored by the Kano Takuya Cultural Institute of Wine Co., Ltd., the 2008 competition was tight – with over 55 different cups vying for the top spot, but there can only be one “Grand Prix” winner. This past year, that honor when to:

cup_kantyukatupuSake name:
Koshi no Kanchubai Ginjo Nama chozo TG Cup
Niigata Meijo Kabushikigaisha Corp.

Here are the details on this award winning cup sake:
Milling Rate: 57%
Alcohol: 15-16%
Price is ¥ 284 (~$3.00)

The saddest part of the whole story is that the Grand Prix award winning cup sake from 2008 is not even for sale in the USA! All we can do is wish to taste it ourselves. One Japanese review wrote:

Clearly the sweet, delicious taste of the sake rice emerge from the back. Including the sweet smell of incense… beautiful. Tightening the overall soft acidity, the flavors come out even more clearly. Tasted at room temperature, the flavors of alcohol become more prominent. Taste a bit sloppy.

Hmmmm. There may be a bit lost in translation here, but my interest is piqued! All I can say is, let’s bring on more cup sake in the USA and maybe have a little bit of sloppy cup sake fun on this side of the pacific. Who do you think should win our cup sake Grand Prix?