Art of sake brewing; refining your taste and making microorganisms happy
Founded in 1785, the Juhachi Zakari Brewery is located in Kurashiki City, Okayama Prefecture, near the sea.
Yugasan RendaijiYugasan Rendaiji, a temple located behind the brewery was regarded as a guardian deity for boats. Sake brewing here first started as a way to worship the deity, as the brewery was right at the approach to the temple. The entrance of the brewery was originally built in the Edo period, which still remains today and in use.
the brewery's entrance from Edo period
"The essence of sake brewing is to vitalize microorganisms"
"Mr. Ishiai, the toji (or head of brewer), did not study sake brewing at college, but graduated from an engineering college and participated in the development of cathode ray tubes.
When he returned to the brewery, he actually knew nothing about sake brewing. He was the youngest of three brothers, but he was asked to join the brewery because he was more talented in business matters.
president Keizo ishiai
Only after he became toji did he begin to learn about sake brewing. He looked back at that time and says he became obsessed with sake brewing as he learned more about sake brewing. When he first took over the position, his first priority was to improve the taste of the sake to a satisfying level.
But once he was more satisfied with the taste, he came up with a new proposition: "What is the essence of sake brewing?" He kept thinking about sake brewing thoroughly, and that lead him to a new perspective.
He has become to letting nature take its course and letting the microorganisms thrive. Through this practice, he sharpened his senses of creation, and recognized himself as an artisan. Microorganisms, just like humans, grow by eating. There are times when they act in unexpected ways, and that is exactly why his inquisitive mind can't stop exploring new things."
"Your sake can tell people your strong belief"
Okayama is known as the "Land of Sunshine" because of its warm and sunny weather. This climate is ideal for rice cultivation, meaning good quality rice can be harvested. Thus, all of their sake is made using locally produced rice. The taste of their sake has savor ('umami') and a hint of minerality, a light touch, structured with some acidity, but not heavy. They are faithfully facing with sake production, knowing that consumers are fascinated to brewers who has a strong belief and their goals.
the brewery surrounding mountains and sea
Topics around sake brewing always stimulate the toji's spirit of inquiry, making him excited.
"Fluffy Umami" is a type of sake that is so easy to drink; the next thing you know the bottle is empty. Produced by the toji who's always facing sake brewing serious and delightfully, his sake is a perfect companion for unpretentious dinners.
From Head of brewerOur sake can be enjoyed in any temperature range. Please feel the flavor of Omachi rice.
This is a versatile sake that goes well with pretty much anything, even western food such as pickled octopus, caprese, cheese, etc. would be a perfect combination.