Akashi-Tai sake reveals new brand identity and artisan design

Transform magazine, 9th July 2018

Expanding its global appeal and securing leverage across the Japanese market, the Akashi-Tai Brewery has recently unveiled a new rebrand. To distance itself from the previous fish imagery with which the product had become associated, the brand turned to the London office of global design agency Cowan to develop a bespoke identity for its five-strong range.

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At Mugaritz, sommelier Guillermo Cruz pairs sake and the avant-garde

The Japan Times, 7th July 2018

When you think of the Basque Country in northern Spain, sake is unlikely to spring to mind. According to government statistics, exports of Japanese sake to Spain amounted to 154,159 liters in 2017 — a mere drop in the bucket compared to 5.8 million liters to the U.S., sake’s largest overseas market.

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Fukushima to open shop in NYC to boost sake exports

The Asahi Shimbun, 5th July 2018

Prefectural officials are hoping a new specialty shop in the Big Apple will help locally brewed sake make it in the United States. With interest in the Japanese rice wine growing in the United States amid the Japanese food boom, the officials aim to promote the high quality of Fukushima-produced sake and expand sales channels.

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A New York sommelier reveals why he quit music when he discovered sake

Post magazine, 5th July 2018

For Seju Yang, the Osaka-born sommelier at Brushstroke, in New York, composing a wine list is like writing music.

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5 facts about Japanese sake that you didn’t know

Style, 14th June 2018

Thanks to the popularity of Japanese cuisine, Japan’s national drink, sake, has been catching up fast over the last five years. According to Trade Statistics of Japan 2018 by Japan’s Ministry of Finance, the export of sake set a new record in 2017 to 23,500 kilolitres worldwide.

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What’s the big deal with sake?

Irish Times,  7th April 2018

Sake opens you up to a different world of tastes and flavours. It is a drink quite like no other, subtle, sometimes fragrant and fruity, at other times rich and almost funky. It has been made in Japan for millennia. Interest outside of Japan has exploded over the last decade, especially in the top restaurants of London, New York and elsewhere.

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Hong Kong and Macau, the sake gateways to China

Japan Times,  7th April 2018

In keeping with a rise in sake exports around the world, sales of the beverage are growing in Macau, an autonomous region of China known for its casinos and luxury hotels. Driven by the popularity of Japanese cuisine and its associations with prestige, sake exports to Macau rose to a high of ¥150 million in 2017, according to Japan’s Ministry of Finance.

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Old sake gets a new lease on life

Nikkei Asian Review,  7th April 2018

Hayato Shoji, a 42-year-old sake brewer in Chiba Prefecture, north of Tokyo, is a fifth generation master with a proud family pedigree going back 140 years. Today, he is intent on reviving an old tradition: sipping aged sake, a custom once popular among ordinary Japanese.

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Why Restaurants Are Choosing Sake Over Wine For Food Pairing

Hong Kong Tatler,  6th April 2018

From the tables of Hong Kong to Europe, North America and beyond, the traditional Japanese rice wine is increasingly being accepted as an enjoyable and versatile accompaniment to food, and not simply for dishes from the beverage’s Asian homeland.

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Why You Should Never Pour Your Own Sake

Vinepair,  3rd April 2018

The primary ritual to keep in mind when drinking sake, the Japanese beverage in the midst of an American renaissance, is to never pour your own glass. Sake is meant to be a team sport, whether it’s accompanying a Michelin-starred meal, or paired with your roommates’ pizza on the couch.

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With export of Japanese sake peaking in 2017, focus shifts to education, enjoyment

The Mainichi,  2nd April 2018

Along with the Japanese food boom, “sake” rice wine has also seen a sharp rise in popularity. In part due to the “Cool Japan Strategy” promoted by the public and private sectors, 2017 saw the greatest ever export income from the beverage, and enthusiasts are moving onto the next stage: how best to educate those abroad about the drink.

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Know by Moto: Sake finds a chic haven below Shinjuku

Japan Times,  31st March 2018

So you’ve rendezvoused beneath the huge video screen at Studio Alta. You’ve explored Shinjuku, maybe caught a movie or trawled for treats in the gleaming depachika (basement food floor) of the Isetan department store. Now you’re ready for sustenance. Somewhere cool, with good food and premium sake. No problem at all for those in The Know.

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Oz Clarke: ‘Challenge Your Perceptions Of Sake

The Drinks Business,  28th March 2018

UK drinkers need to “challenge their perceptions of sake” and embrace its, often surprising, versatility wine writer Oz Clarke urged at the launch of a new campaign to promote the ancient Japanese drink this week. Clarke and fellow drinks writers Olly Smith and Susy Atkins were talking at the launch of a new campaign backed by the Japanese government which is seeking to “transform the way sake is served and enjoyed in the UK”.

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Why sake is the drink of 2018

London Evening Standard, 23rd March 2018

It may have nearly two millennia of history, but how much do you know about sake? In recent years, the traditional Japanese tipple’s unique taste and rich and plentiful flavours has seen it appear on more and more menus, causing its UK availability to increase dramatically.

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As Japan falls out of love with sake, brewers look to the West

NBC News, 21st February 2018

Sake runs in Tokubee Masuda’s blood. He’s the 14th generation of his family to operate one of the many sake breweries in Fushimi, a small district in Japan’s old capital of Kyoto.

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Is Japanese sake too cheap? Many in the industry think so

Nikkei Asian Review, 14th February 2018

Japanese sake is gaining enthusiastic fans around the world. Yet foreigners who are familiar with sake after drinking it at places like upscale restaurants are often surprised at how cheap it is in Japan.

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French develop taste for Japanese ‘sake nouveau’

The Telegraph, 4th February 2018

The Japanese are very partial to France’s Beaujolais Nouveau wine, and bon vivants in Paris are now returning the compliment by developing a taste for “Sake Nouveau”.

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Sake company Aramasa Shuzo seeks new edge with techno partnership

Japan Times, 20th January 2018

Last month, techno DJ Richie Hawtin — who came to fame in the 1990s under the alias Plastikman — threw a party at The Hangar, a cavernous sake den in Tokyo’s hipster Nakameguro neighborhood.

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Sake fights for a place at the table

New Haven Register, 16th January 2018

As Japanese cuisine becomes increasingly popular around the world, sake is also getting its turn in the spotlight. However, it’s still far from an everyday beverage overseas.

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Yamagata brewing venture makes splash abroad with sake aged in wine barrels

Japan Times, 7th January 2018

Wakaze Inc. in Tsuruoka, Yamagata Prefecture, exports its Orbia brand sake to markets such as France and Hong Kong. Orbia comes in two varieties, Sol and Luna (Latin for sun and moon), with the former known for its rich sourness and fruity aroma and the latter for its delicate sweetness, the company claims.

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The Hangar: A triumphant pairing of food, sake and techno in Tokyo

Japan Times, 6th January 2018

How better to start the new year than with lofty aspirations, a leisurely dinner in a hip setting, techno on the sound system — and plenty of great sake? That’s exactly what you find at The Hangar, a sleek little sake-specialist bar-turned-restaurant that seems to exemplify Japan’s reborn enthusiasm for its national tipple, nihonshu.

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Food and Sake Pairings that aren’t Traditional Japanese Dishes

The Manual, 5th January 2018

Ask 10 people about what they would pair with sake and, unless you’ve got someone who has spent a good deal of time drinking the stuff, it’s almost a sure bet that they’re all going to same the same thing: Japanese food.

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Americans Love Pairing Sake With Sushi, But It’s a Big Mistake

Vinepair, 3rd January 2018

Sake is having a moment in the U.S. We are currently Japan’s largest export market for its traditional rice beverage, sipping nearly 5,000 kiloliters per year. Small wine shops sell unfiltered nigori sake alongside hipster varietal wines.

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A Luxury Sake Bar from Tokyo Eyes New York Opening

Eater New York, 2nd January 2018

A super upscale sake bar from Tokyo with sake tasting menus and $700 bottles is headed to New York. Twelv, which specializes in sake and Japanese tapas made from organic ingredients, is scouting spaces in Soho and the West Village.

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Fukushima Looks to Top-Tier Sake to Beat Stigma, Lift Economy

Bloomberg, 28th December 2017

In an area of Japan still decimated by a nuclear disaster, sake is giving cause for hope. For the past five years, the sake brewers of Fukushima, on a two-decade quest to develop premium products, have captured the most gold medals in a key national competition and have won numerous international awards.

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Sake brewer jumps on wine bandwagon in France

The Asahi Shimbun, 25th December 2017

A sake brewer is making wine from a grape it grows in France as part of an effort to promote Japan’s traditional beverage across the globe. Banjo Jozo, a brewery in Nagoya’s Midori Ward that is famous for its Kamoshibito Kuheiji “junmai daiginjo” high-quality sake, has started producing wine in Burgundy.

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My discovery of sake

Nappa Valley Register, 21st December 2017

Like many other people, I started drinking sake at the local mom-and-pop sushi joints, the now relocated Sushi Mambo, the legendary Fujiya at the Napa Outlets owned and operated by the late Eiko Nakamura, and some San Francisco gems such as Blowfish Sushi.

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Brewer of Japan’s famed Dassai sake to open New York plant

Nikkei Asian Review, 12th December 2017

The brewer behind Japan’s premium Dassai sake brand wants to sell high-quality but affordable bottles to the American masses, and it plans to open a large brewery in New York State to do it.

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3 of Japan’s most prominent sake-producing regions

London Evening Standard, 7th December 2017

Kate Lough catches 10 minutes with Natskui Kikuya, the director of sake at Sakagura, to hear about how regionality affects the taste of sake.

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Award-Winning Hiro® Sake Announces The Debut Of Hiro Gold In Japan

PR Newswire, 5th December 2017

Hiro Sake®, the award-winning, handcrafted, premium sake from Japan, is proud to announce its market entry to Japan, the country where it is produced. Hiro is hand crafted Japanese sake using only the finest ingredients at the Taiyo Sake Brewery in the Niigata Prefecture.

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Why You Should Swap Out White Wine With Sake This Holiday Season

Forbes, 20th November 2017

For Nancy Cushman, the co-owner of dining hot spots O Ya and Covina, sake is serious business. And since discovering the Japanese spirit twenty years ago, she’s made it her mission to help even the most veteran tipplers transform their views on how, when, and why they should drink it.

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Sake London-Style: Britain’s First Sake Brewery

Nippon, 11th November 2017

No wonder Lucy Holmes and Tom Wilson describe their sake business as a “nanobrewery.” At just 25 square meters in area, you almost feel this entire operation could fit one of the larger sake vats in Japan.

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Blending Techno And Tradition: You Should Be Dancing … With Sake

The Salt, 22nd October 2017

“I first traveled to Japan in 1994 and, upon landing, the culture immediately made a deep impression on me,” says Hawtin. “I found a country filled with beautiful contrasts which balanced high technology and deep cultural traditions.”

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The Secret to reading Sake Labels

Vinepair, 20th October 2017

Sake is often misunderstood. To many Americans, the Japanese beverage is only consumed hot or dropped into a beer after pounding the table and yelling, “When you say sake I say bomb! Sake! Bomb!”

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Fukushima sake served and savored at U.K. Parliament

Japan Times, 19th October 2017

A reception was held on Tuesday night at London’s Palace of Westminster used for Britain’s Parliament to serve sake made in Fukushima Prefecture and show its recovery from the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami that hit the Tohoku region, triggering a nuclear plant disaster.

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Building of UK’s first Japanese-run sake brewery nears completion

Cambridge News, 17th October 2017

The construction of the UK’s first sake brewery is nearing completion. Nestled within the historic grounds of Fordham Abbey near Ely, the Dojima Sake Brewery will start test brewing in the New Year. The red roof went on to the barn style building last Friday (October 13) and local contractor’s Patrick Doyle are set to hand over the building on November 18.

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‘Doburoku’: Reviving a rustic sake tradition

Japan Times, 7th October 2017

Sachio Egawa is a Renaissance man of sorts. A spry 68-year-old with a jokey manner and a full head of black hair, he raises his own cows, grows rice and cultivates giant yamame trout in a pond on his farm in northern Iwate Prefecture. In autumn, he forages for wild mushrooms; in winter, he goes hunting for deer and, on occasion, bears.

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Japan makes sake tax-free for tourists

Inquirer, 5th October 2017

Tourists may now purchase bottles of Japan’s native alcohol sake (rice wine) from designated Japanese breweries and distilleries. According to the newly-launched program, the 86.4 yen (about P39) liquor tax and 8 percent consumption tax will be waived when tourists purchase a 720 milliliter bottle of refined sake or “seishuu” from a government designated brewery, reports The Japan Times.

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Restaurant runs sake festival as part of month-long celebration

Bar Magazine, 4th October 2017

Sakagura, the Japanese restaurant and sake bar in London’s Mayfair, is celebrating all things sake this month, including a day-long festival. Starting on World Sake Day on October 1, the bar is championing its extensive range of sakes, available by the glass, carafe or bottle, covering styles from namazake, honjozo, junmai and daiginjo to sparkling, cloudy nigori and aged koshu.

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Newly Opened Sake Central Is What Sake Lovers Have All Been Waiting For

Hong Kong Tatler, 15th September 2017

Sake Central is set to take Hong Kong’s food and beverage scene to the next level, with ample space at Soho’s PMQ given over to the project helmed by Elliot Faber, Ken Nagai and Takashi Endo. The trio, each involved in Japanese culture and the F&B industry, bring a wealth of knowledge about the country’s famed tipple.

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Britain’s appetite for sake is showing signs of growth

Japan Times, 12th August 2017

According to research by drinks supplier Bibendum, sake sales in Britain have increased by 240 percent over the past 10 years. The days when sake could only be found in Japanese restaurants are gone, too. The drink is now stocked in a wide range of venues across Britain, including pop-up dining experiences, cocktail bars and department stores.

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For goodness’ sake: Soho+Co’s pop-up sake bar makes a splash in London

Wallpaper Magazine, 7th August 2017

As part of a wider celebration of Japanese culture, London architecture and design studio Soho+Co has launched a portable sake bar in the British Museum’s Great Court in collaboration with Japan House.

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Meet The Couple Brewing Sake In South London

Londonist, 1st August 2017

Just a few streets from the cut and thrust of Peckham’s Rye Lane, sandwiched between a carpenter and music studio, you’ll find a couple bringing the 1,300 year old art of Japanese sake brewing to London. They call themselves Kanpai, and in this tiny industrial unit inside the Print Village, they are, perhaps, making booze history.

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To Lure Wine Lovers, Sake Makers Learn It’s All About Rice

Bloomberg  Pursuits, 24th July 2017

Last year, Nanbu-Bijin generated about 100 million yen ($903,000) in foreign sales, amounting to 15 percent of its total revenue. Shipments were made to 34 markets, including the U.S., France, China and Nigeria. That’s up from zero two decades ago, and Kuji says he’s targeting 30 percent of sales in five years.

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East Meets… The UK’s First Sake Brewery – Kanpai in Peckham

Inside Japan Tours, 15th August 2017

Three years after supping all of the sake on a mammoth trip around Japan, Lucy and Tom have brought the taste of the East to South London with the UK’s first ever sake brewery.

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Shipments of sake made in France to start in Sept.

Japan News, 15th August 2017

Shipments of ripe sake made at a brewery in Pelussin, southern France, using rice from Japan will start next month. French businessman Gregoire Boeuf, 35, who learned sake-making in Tottori Prefecture, says that he wants to let French people experience the flavor of local sake in Japan.

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As Japan falls out of love with sake, the world orders another glass

The Guardian, 15th July 2017

The Japanese have been drinking sake since around the eight century, originally believing that it warded off evil spirits. But with more people turning their back on their national drink, which is made from fermented rice, brewers are winning converts far beyond Japan’s shores.

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Aldi now sells £3.99 Japanese sake, but does it taste any good?

Telegraph, 14th July 2017

Sushi is now mainstream: we eat it as a desk-snack instead of an egg and cress sandwich, and order it in for parties and dinners at home. Yet sake, its traditional accompaniment, hasn’t made quite the same incursions into the booze supply clanking in our fridge doors.

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Sake from Japan’s Saga Popular in Paris Contest (News)

Nipon.com, 12th July 2017

At the Kura Master contest held in Paris last month, more than 30 jurors, including top sommeliers in France, tasted 550 sake brands from across Japan. They chose top five brands each in the junmai and junmai daiginjō categories.

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Liberty Wines makes first foray into Sake

Harpers, 30th June 2017

Liberty Wines has become the UK agent for Tosa Brewery’s Keigetsu range, marking the first time they’ve added a Sake into their portfolio.

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Japanese sake startup finds way to float in sinking industry

Japan Times, 8th April 2017

Entrepreneur Nao Kohara sits at a table in his favorite neighborhood bar, checking emails on his laptop computer and sipping a glass of sake. Some of his brightest business ideas have been hatched over a few drinks — including the concept behind his latest venture, a startup called Nihonshu Oendan (sake supporters)

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Sake served like beer from tanks new star at Koshien Stadium

The Asahi Shimbun, 6th April 2017

The professional baseball season is now in full swing across Japan, and this season there is a newcomer to the stands. Beer has long been a mainstay of beverages offered during games. But from April 7, attendants in happi coats will start dispensing sake at Koshien Stadium here from tanks strapped to their backs, just as beer is sold.

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Hidehiko Ishizuka takes his love of sake on tour in streaming TV series

Japan Times, 10th March 2017

Gourmandizing television personality Hidehiko Ishizuka has a famously large appetite. Apparently, the portly comedian also has a taste for Japanese sake. On a clear February afternoon in the sake-producing region of Fushimi, just south of Kyoto, he samples a glass of sake in the tasting room of Matsumoto Shuzo, a historical brewery and designated heritage site.

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Asano: Sake tasting as an antidote for the shopping blues

Japan Times, 10th March 2017

This one is for the shoppers, or for those who have to go shopping but would rather be drinking sake. On the ground floor of Kyoto Aeon Mall, directly behind Kyoto Station, you’ll find Asano, a sake shop that has a small counter where they serve tasting menus and a concise but lively food menu.

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Sake brewer Philip Harper: ‘You need to learn humility in the face of nature’

Japan Times, 25th February 2017

Toji is usually translated as “master brewer.” He (or, very occasionally, she) is entirely responsible for the practical business of brewing in a particular sake brewery. I started as a sake brewery underling and never stopped, until the point when the toji of the brewery I was working for at the time moved on, and the owner asked me to take over.

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Onsen charts a new course: Sake, supper and a soak

San Francisco Chronicle, 24th February 2017

I was there purely out of curiosity because the idea of a bath, restaurant and teahouse under one warehouse-size roof was worth exploring, if only for the novelty. What I didn’t expect was how good, and how reasonably priced, the food coming out of the tiny kitchen would be.

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‘God of sake brewing’ making a comeback in Ishikawa

Asahi Shimbun, 23rd February 2017

An 84-year-old known as “a god of sake brewing” will come out of retirement to live the rest of his life doing what he loves best. Naohiko Noguchi retired as brewer two years ago, but he will start making and shipping sake at a planned new brewery in Komatsu, Ishikawa Prefecture, in October. Noguchi has been involved in the brewing industry since he was 16 years old. He said his return to the business is “my last service.”

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‘Sunshine Sento Sake’ Is the Next Best Thing to Being in Tokyo

Eater, 21st February 2017

Sunshine Sento-Sake is based on a series of illustrated essays written by Masayuki Kusumi and illustrated by Haruki Izumi. A translation of the intro reads, “Drinks enjoyed while the sun is still up are delicious. The defiance it takes to brazenly enjoy a drink despite having other things one ought to be doing makes it taste simply exquisite. A drink’s flavor becomes that much richer with the knowledge that though you’ve already begun drinking, much of the day yet remains.”

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How Japanese food is revolutionising the way we eat

FT How to Spend It, 10th February 2017

The recent appointment of a new head chef at The Square, the two-Michelin-starred restaurant in Mayfair, caused a minor stir among gastronomic folk. For the first time in London, a Japanese chef is leading the brigade at an elite French restaurant.

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Launch of a Global E-commerce Site for Premium Japanese Sake

Yahoo Finance, 20th January 2017

A global e-commerce site Premium Sake will be launched by liquor consultant Kyo-ya and Inishie Sake (Tokyo) store, together with Forblu Inc. on January 20th 2017. The online shop will enable the discerning appreciators of the finer things in life to receive direct delivery of the highest quality Sakes.

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Harper’s Bazaar, 17th January 2017

Japanese skincare treatments, from green tea facials to SK-II sheet masks, have become essential components of our weekly skincare routines, so naturally we’re very interested in the age-old Japanese skincare ritual that’s suddenly gained world-wide acclaim: The Sake Bath.

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Add Sake To Your Beauty Regimen

Food & Wine, 14th January 2017

Sake’s softening, hydrating and glow-giving powers largely come from kojic acid—a by-product of rice malt that’s been used for centuries in Japanese rituals.

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Sake from all 37 breweries in Akita available at one outlet

The Asahi Shimbun, 14th January 2017

AKITA–A company’s promotion of sake from around the prefecture includes a convenient outlet that serves about 100 varieties from all 37 “nihonshu” breweries in the northern prefecture.

Bishu Okoku Akita (Beautiful sake kingdom Akita), known simply as Sake-Navi, opened on Dec. 21 in the busy Kawabata commercial district of this prefectural capital.

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Why You Should Take a Sake Bath in Japan

Conde Nast Traveller, 14th January 2017

When we heard about a castle in Italy offering wine-inspired spa treatments, we pretty much thought we were in heaven—hello booze, castles, and spas. But a few spots in Japan may have just kicked it up a notch by offering relaxing baths made of sake, or rice wine.

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Richie Hawtin Wants You to Ditch Vodka and Tequila for Sake in the Club

Thump News, 9th January 2017

Canadian electronic musician Richie Hawtin has a lot of enthusiasm about the potential benefits of sake for clubbing. In an interview with The Japan Times published Friday, he details how he came to love the Japanese rice wine so much, and how he’s come to incorporate it into his profession as a DJ and entrepreneur.

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Richie Hawtin: Pairing Japan’s best sake with techno

Japan Times, 6th January 2017

Richie Hawtin needs no introduction to anyone familiar with electronic music. For 25 years, this Berlin-based, English-Canadian DJ has been at the forefront of techno and he continues to play at major music and art events around the planet. Less well known is his passion for premium sake and his work introducing Japan’s national drink to the rest of the world through his Enter.Sake project.

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Tokyo’s progressive French restaurants are developing a taste for sake

Japan Times, 9th December 2016

The first time I drank sake at a non-Japanese restaurant was nearly seven years ago at Coi, a Michelin-starred establishment in San Francisco that serves modern Californian cuisine. The combination made perfect sense: the sake played off the Japanese-inspired ingredients in sensory and conceptual harmony.

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Sake brewery to open shop in Paris with Robuchon

Japan Times, 4th December 2016

Asahi Shuzo Co., maker of popular Japanese sake brand Dassai, will open a shop in Paris as early as next spring in collaboration with renowned French chef Joel Robuchon.

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Sake 101: 17 Bottles to Try Right Now

Forbes, 30th November 2016

Even those who know their way around every wine region (or can pronounce the name of every Scottish distillery) are often baffled when it comes to sake. As with wine and whisky, sake requires an education.

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London’s Hottest New Drink Hails From The East

Refinery29, 11th November 2016

Saké is the world’s oldest known alcoholic beverage, boasting over six millennia of culture and tradition. Given its long history and reputation as “the drink of the gods”, it’s no wonder that so many of us find it an intimidating tipple.

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An Insider’s Guide to Drinking Sake in Tokyo

Vogue, 7th November 2016

Japan has a centuries-long history of brewing and drinking sake, but in recent years the country’s national beverage has been expanding its horizons. “In order to reach a wider audience, sake-makers are now creating a wider range of sake,” explains Kay Hattori, head of communications for Uber Japan.

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Sake: Wine’s Japanese fling

Decanter, 7th November 2016

What do we call it? Acceptance? Absorption? Adoption? Whatever word you prefer, the process is well under way: sake now seems to belong on wine lists and in wine magazines. Wine lovers revealing ignorance of or disaffection for this newly fashionable drink court opprobrium.

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Akita sake trade is booming as brewers focus on overseas market

The Asahi Shimbun, 4th November 2016

Fewer Japanese may be drinking sake, but exports of the alcoholic beverage are growing, partially due to the rising popularity of Japanese cuisine overseas. A brewer in Akita Prefecture is working on international market development, such as launching products exclusively for overseas and creating an English website.

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Japanese ambassador visits Fens to conduct traditional ceremony at Britain’s first sake brewery

Cambridge News, 1st November 2016

A traditional Japanese ceremony was held at the construction site of the UK’s first sake brewery in East Cambridgeshire. 60 people attended the event, including the Japanese ambassador Koji Tsuruoka and MP for South East Cambridgeshire Lucy Frazer.

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Award-Winning Hiro® Sake From Japan Presents Hiro Gold

Hiro Sake, 13th October 2016

Electronic music icon and Sake Samurai Richie Hawtin has introduced his boutique sake collection ENTER.Sake to the UK, aspiring to make the Japanese rice wine approachable for millennial drinkers.

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Electronic Musician Brings Boutique Sake Line To Uk Millennials

The Drinks Business, 10th October 2016

Electronic music icon and Sake Samurai Richie Hawtin has introduced his boutique sake collection ENTER.Sake to the UK, aspiring to make the Japanese rice wine approachable for millennial drinkers.

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Rating, ranking — and ruining? — Japanese sake

Japan Times, 7th October 2016

On Aug. 31, the Wine Advocate, a publication started by the influential U.S.-based wine critic Robert Parker, released its first “official” ratings guide to sake. The report caused an immediate stir.

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A Big Change Just Hit the World of Sake. Here’s What You Need to Know

Bloomberg, 26th September 2016

Japanese sake joins rarified treats like Champagne and Parmigiano Reggiano as a protected designation. From now on, in the U.S., “Japanese sake” will be protected under the Geographic Indicators laws.

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After wine, is sake the new drinkable investment?

The Telegraph, 5th September 2016

Sake is entering the mainstream. The Japanese rice wine, once rarely seen outside Japan, is on the way to becoming an international delicacy. World-renowned wine expert Robert Parker has added 78 varieties to his list of top wines for the first time ever. But does it have investment potential?

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Joanna Lumley’s Japan

ITV, 5th September 2016

Joanna starts her 2000 mile journey across Japan in Hokkaido – one of the four main islands. Travelling south she visits a brewery that has been making sake since 1689.

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Best cellar: precision chills and thrills from Nendo’s sake store

Wallpaper,18th August 2016

For the sake enthusiast, refinement, the more or less of it, is everything. Designer Oki Sato, for instance, founder of Nendo, likes sake that’s not too refined.

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Review: ‘Kampai! For the Love of Sake’ Celebrates Japan’s Best-Known Libation

The New York Times,18th August 2016

The title “Kampai! For the Love of Sake” — “kampai” is a Japanese toast — captures the essence of this crisp if feather-light documentary. The film, directed by Mirai Konishi, is the latest in a mini-genre (including “The Birth of Sake,” released in March,

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First Japanese sake brewery in the UK coming to Fordham

CAMBRIDGE news,12th August 2016

A Japanese family who have been producing rice wine for hundreds of years are setting up the UK’s first sake brewery.The Dojima company is investing £9 million after buying Fordham Abbey Estate, where it will also build an education and visitor centre.

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Sake Competition sets the standard for new enthusiasts

The Japan Times,12th August 2016

On July 29, Iwao Niizawa, the fifth-generation president of Niizawa Jozoten in Miyagi Prefecture, was one of six brewers to claim prizes at the 2016 Sake Competition awards ceremony that took place at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Tokyo.

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Trend setting:sake

THE CODE APP , August 2016

In 1884, London had its first taste of Japanese cuisine in the upstairs of Bertram & Roberts’s smoking pavilion as part of the International Health Exhibition.

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In search of ‘natsuzake,’ Japan’s summer sake

The Japan Times, 8th July 2016

Summer is my least favorite season in Japan. Stepping outside, the heat and humidity hits with startling force: the hot air weighs heavy on my limbs, enveloping me in a stifling and unwelcome embrace.

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takashi murakami creates limited edition sake with akita-based brewers NEXT5

designboom, 7th July 2016

takashi murakami has embarked on a collaboration with akita-based brewers NEXT5 to develop a sake that goes back to the origins of producing the traditional japanese rice wine.

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‘Kampai!’ raises a glass to sake education

The Japan Times, 6th July 2016

For decades, sake (or nihonshu for the majority of Japanese) didn’t really do it for the citizens of this archipelago. Cheap, ubiquitous and made from rice, it seemed too familiar — tacky even.

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Nuclear disaster a ‘springboard’ for Fukushima sake brewers

The Asahi Shimbun, 5th July 2016

FUKUSHIMA–After a change in preference among the nation’s imbibers, Fukushima Prefecture rapidly gained ground as the top sake-producing area in Japan.

And then the nuclear disaster struck in March 2011.

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Where to find the world’s best sake

CNN, 23rd June 2016

(CNN)“No moon, no blossom. Just me drinking sake, totally alone.”

This melancholy haiku was penned by Japanese poet Matsuo Basho in 1689, shortly before he set off on a 1,200-mile journey through Tohoku, Japan’s vast northeast that reaches up to Hokkaido.

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A Spotlight On The Oldest Sake Brewery In Japan

VISUAL NEWS, 22nd June 2016

For many, sake is the perfect accompaniment to a Japanese meal or an excellent way to celebrate, but for one family, it is more like a traditional art than a drink.

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Tokyo sake bars bring tastes of Japan to younger consumers

The Asahi Shimbun, 21st April 2016

A string of sake bar outlets in Tokyo is creating a buzz by offering tastings of different brands of the fermented rice beverage from all across Japan.Located in the capital’s Shinjuku district, the newest outlet of the Kurand Sake Market, operated by Liquor Innovation Co., opened its doors on April 6.

Eight cool places to drink cold sake

TimeOut, 21st April 2016

Sake seems to be flavour of the month in London. No matter where you look, there’s a new Japanese restaurant/bar/drinking den appearing with a cocktail list full of drinks you’ve never heard of, made from Japan’s favourite fermented rice drink. But they’re flipping tradition by adding a very modern twist and serving up some seriously sexy cocktails. Check out these bars to find the most imaginative and tasty tipples.

Hyogo to host 10th International Wine Challenge Sake competition

Japan Today, 20th April 2016

Hyogo Prefecture will host the 10th International Wine Challenge Sake competition in May, following an agreement signed between Hyogo Gov Toshizo Ido and Andrew Reed, managing director of the International Wine Challenge.

Inaugural sake exhibition at LWF

The Publican’s Morning Advertiser, 31st March 2016

Sake will be exhibited at the London Wine Fair (LWF) for the first time later this year, reflecting the growing importance of the category in the capital, according to event organisers.

Review: In ‘The Birth of Sake,’ a Brew Made With Pride and Lots of Patience

The New York Times, March 17, 2016

Chronicling a season at a small family-owned brewery, Erik Shirai’s “The Birth of Sake” is an engrossing introduction to the traditional cultivation of the rice-based alcohol that is part of Japan’s cultural heritage. But the film’s true focus is an endangered way of life.

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Cotte: a brand of skincare by way of sake and fermentation

Spoon & Tamago, February 25, 2016

In Japan it’s been known for many years that sake brewers, despite their manual labor, have skin that’s soft and moist. That’s because the amino acids in the fermentation and brewery process act as natural moisturizers that deliver deep hydration to the skin.

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‘Amazake’: The wintertime sake that isn’t what it seems

The Japan Times , February 19, 2016

For more than 1,000 years, a sweet, thick beverage known as amazake has been produced in Japan. Amanotamuznake, an early version of amazake, is mentioned in the “Nihon Shoki” (“Chronicles of Japan”),

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The Sake Revelation, Food Programme

23rd February 2016, BBC Radio 4

If your experience of sake has been limited to simply ‘a hot cup of alcohol after a meal’ like Sheila Dillon it’s time to listen without prejudice. With thousands of breweries each producing dozens of varieties there is more range than most of us understand.


Mie sake brewers vie to be tasted at G-7 banquet

The Japan Times , February 2nd, 2016

As the Group of Seven summit that Japan will host in May in Mie Prefecture nears, local sake breweries are hoping the government will select their brand to be used for toasts during the banquet Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will host at the two-day event..

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Japan’s latest KitKat flavor is smooth sake

THE VERGE, January 29th, 2016

Another day, another Japanese KitKat flavor to envy.

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Fukushima Sake Takes the World by Storm!

BusinessWire, January 21st, 2016

FUKUSHIMA, Japan–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Under its slogan, “Future from Fukushima,”

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Rock and roll has beer, but techno has sake samurai

theguardian, October 2nd, 2015

Jay McInerney’s 1992 novel Brightness Falls features hedonistic New Yorkers approaching middle age.

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Brewing sake in Japan is becoming a woman’s game — again

PRI’sTheWorld, September 11th, 2015

For a long time, sake brewing in Japan was an industry made up of owners who didn’t brew the sake themselves, and migrant master brewers, called Toji, who would live at distilleries in the winter brewing season and then go home.

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For heaven’s sake

The Caterer, August 14th, 2015

Roger Jones, owner of the Harrow at Little Bedwyn, Wiltshire, breaks down the process behind the creation of premium Japanese sakes

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Japan’s changing food tastes are hard to swallow for rice and sake enthusiasts

theguardian, June 5th, 2015

Japanese cuisine made it on to Unesco’s list of “intangible cultural heritage” in 2013, but it hardly needed that honour to be appreciated across the globe. Through the food of Japan, the west discovered a new frontier of taste: light and healthy, respect for texture and flavour, refined presentation. Little wonder, then, that today some of the most accomplished and multi-talented chefs are Japanese.

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Aged Sake Part 2: A range of style and techniques

Harpers, May 27th, 2015

In the second part of our sake blog, Anna Greehhouse looks at styles and techniques of aged sake and looks beyond Japan to find them.

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Aged sake Part 1: Is it all it is cracked up to be?

Harpers, May 26th, 2015

In the first of a two-part blog, Anna Greenhous looks at aged sake, a niche product that divides opinion.

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Sake & techno music

The Japan News, May 25th, 2015

Sake has expanded into the global market via restaurants serving Japanese food. But foreign aficionados of Japan’s traditional alcoholic drink are not limited to fans of Japanese cuisine. In Spain, for example, sake has caught on among attendees of an annual event for edgy techno dance music.

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Fukushima again tops in grand prizes at sake competition

THE ASAHI SHIMBUN, May 21st, 2015

Fukushima Prefecture won the most grand prizes at the Annual Japan Sake Awards for the third straight year, lifting the spirits of brewers still struggling with the effects of the nuclear accident there

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Japanese sake makers in big China promo

ShanghaiDairy, May 15th, 2014

MICHELLE Lin is getting ready for a weekend house party to celebrate a girlfriend’s engagement. Usually, the 28-year-old entrepreneur would get a selection of wines, but this time she has decided to serve Japanese sake, since sushi, sashimi and chicken teriyaki will be served along with cheese, ham and salad..

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Sake: the ‘rice wine’ renaissance.

PORT, May 11th, 2015

Sake connoisseur Rie Yoshitake speaks to Betty Wood about the renaissance that has occurred around the cherished rice drink over the past ten years.

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Barack Obama and Shinzo Abe participate in a toast with sake during state dinner.

The Guardian, April 29th, 2015

The president welcomed his guest of honor, Shinzo Abe, with a toast over sake that included a poem about spring, friendship and harmony, declaring himself to be the first president to recite a haiku at a state dinner.

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Anna Greenhous: Do different rice varieties effect different styles and flavours of sake?

Harpers, April 16th, 2015

Different grape varieties create distinctively different styles and flavours of wine, but can the same be said for different rice varieties with sake? Anna Greenhous investigates.

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How to get started on sake

The Telegraph, April 10th, 2015

Get to grips with the finer points of premium Japanese rice wine and seek out these top tipples recommended by a sake sommelier.

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How to… drink and buy sake in London with Elyse Li of Japan Gourmet

London Evening Standard, April 7th, 2015

Not sure of the dos and don’ts of Japan’s fermented rice drink? Victoria Stewart gets the top tips from Japan Gourmet’s expert Elyse Li on how to drink and buy sake.

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Saké: from fire water to bar’s coolest tipple

The Times, April 5th, 2015

The surge of high-end Japanese restaurants and pan-Asian cuisine has thrust ginjo and daiginjo saké — premium versions of the Japanese rice wine once served hot and cheap in Chinese restaurants — into the limelight.

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Sake from the Frozen North – Day 2, Yonetsuru and The Snow Monsters

Anthony Rose, March 29th, 2015

Checking out of our hotel on the dot of at 8.20am (well, this is Japan), we took the one-hour drive to Yonetsuru Brewery in Takahata on a chartered bus.
 We had to arrive by 9.30 am because that’s when the rice-steaming starts and rice-steaming waits for no-one.

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Sake from The Frozen North – Day 1, Heading North to Yonezawa

Anthony Rose, March 28th, 2015

This is going to be a sake fan’s dream tour with visits to four sake breweries across the Tohoku region, one each day, bridging the contrast between the snowy mountains of Yamagata and Miyagi’s Matsushima Bay.

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Sake for beginners

Foodepedia, Friday March 13, 2015

Sake has been rising steadily in popularity in the U.K. With more and more ramen, sushi and Japanese cuisine restaurants opening up, people are keen to try it, but often don’t know where to start.

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Japanese sake producers reflect on four years of recovery to mark earthquake anniversary

Harpers, 10th March 2015

Four years since the earthquake and tsunami wreaked havoc across Japan, Anna Greenhous looks at how sake producers, some of whom were wiped out at the time, have rebuilt their industry and how sake has become a symbol for regeneration and hope in the country.

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Japanese cuisine: how washoku is taking over Britain

theguardian, March 5th, 2014

Washoku, or Japanese cooking, has been honoured by Unesco and is all the rage with British chefs, who are sourcing authentic ingredients and adopting complex techniques.

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Prince William reveals he dreamed of being an astronaut

Guardian, 27th February 2015

Duke of Cambridge talks to Japanese astronaut Soichi Noguchi about childhood dream jobs at launch of Innovation is Great campaign in Tokyo

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Can the Scots beat the Japanese at saké?

Telegraph, 23rd February 2015

As Britain’s first saké brewer gets the green light, Fiona Sims finds out how to sound like an expert when you’re faced with a bottle of rice wine

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UK’s first Sake brewery and visitor centre to open in Cambridgeshire

Harpers, 6th February 2015

Dojima, a Japanese brewery based in Osaka, which was founded over 600 years ago has established a company in the UK and plans to start producing premium sake on U.K soil this year.

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The woes of Fukushima’s sake brewers

BBC, 14th January 2015

Ever since the 2011 Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster in Japan, sake-maker Hiroyuki Karahashi has received phone calls from worried Japanese consumers.

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Sake set to finally make its mark in the UK in 2015

Anna Greenhous, Harpers, 7th January 2015

After a breakthrough year in 2014 which saw sake appear in some of the hottest wine lists in the country, including the Chiltern Firehouse, sake experts believe the UK is set to follow the US and Japan and become far more widely distributed across both the on and off-trades.

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Japan 400 Plymouth and Sea Food Festival

Mixcloud, 5th January 2015

Episode 8 of Radio show J400 about the Japan 400 Plymouth and Sea Food Festival, featuring an interview with Sake Samurai UK Representative Rie Yoshitake and Michelin star UMU restaurant chef Yoshinori Ishii.

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Winner of Minister’s Award for Overseas Promotion of Japanese Food, Rie Yoshitake

Newsletter from The Embassy of Japan in the UK, December 2014

UK-based Ms Rie Yoshitake was among the winners of the Eighth Minister’s Award for Overseas Promotion of Japanese Food announced earlier this year. Ms Yoshitake is a UK-Japan communication expert and Sake Promoter. She is an official UK Liaison for the Japan Sake and Shochu Makers Association and the UK representative for the Sake Samurai Association.

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WSET Japan Tour Winter 2014

Mostly Asian Food & Travel, December 2014

Sake is more popular than ever outside Japan. There is a growing body of beverage professionals who are now turning their attention to Japan’s iconic national drink and they are proving their sommelier credentials via the WSET® Level 3 Award in Sake.

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Sake in situ – the overlooked tourist attraction

Mostly Asian Food & Travel, December 2014

A dream came true for me recently and it was courtesy of the Japanese Ministry of Forestry and FisheriesSake in situ (MAFF). That might sound unlikely when one’s dreams are often woven around the acquisition of something small and sparkling, a new 3D TV, or designer shoes. MAFF invited me on my first trip to Japan and that surpassed any gratification from transient gifts.

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Anna Greenhous: Reviews first-ever sake qualification courses that are rolling out in the UK

Harpers, 17th November 2014

Until recently, there were no English language sake qualifications available in the U.K. This November saw the launch of the WSET’s Level 3 Award in Sake, one of a few sake courses and qualifications now available from different providers in the U.K.

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Sake: new and traditional styles are shining a light on the sake scene

The Independent, 4th November 2014

Philip Harper, Japan’s only British sake master brewer, came to London last month to conduct a tasting of his Tamagawa sake, with British cheeses from Paxton & Whitfield: a Shepton Mallet goat’s cheese, Paxton’s aged cheddar, and a half baby stilton.

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Sake brewer aims to build on Fukui’s bonds with Israel

Japan Times, 30th October 2014

A sake brewery in Fukui Prefecture is looking to bring the taste of rice wine to Israel to strengthen relations with a prefecture that has strong historical links to the Jewish nation, links that date back to the 1940s.

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Fortissimo drinks to Kampai! For The Love of Sake

Screen Daily, 29th October 2014

Fortissimo takes world rights except Japan for Mirai Konishi’s feature documentary Kampai! For The Love Of Sake

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Blazing a trail for Japanese sake in China

Japan Times, 9th October 2014

Nineteen years ago, Nakatani began brewing sake in Tianjin, China, and the high-quality “Asaka” sake enjoys nearly the top share of China’s sake market.

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Four hundred years of British-Japanese relations celebrated in Plymouth

Plymouth Herald, 28th Sep 2014

The 112-foot tall ship sailed into Sutton Harbour yesterday afternoon, commemorating the historic homecoming of The Clove in Plymouth 400 years ago which concluded the first UK trade mission to Japan.

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Anna Greenhous: how sake brewing is growing around the world

Harpers, 19th Sep 2014

Having recently detailed the history of sake-brewing in the US, Anna Greenhous looks at sake-brewing in the rest of the world outside of Japan.

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Sharing the Subtleties of Japan’s Original Brew

Highlighting Japan, August 2014 edition

A profile of UK based sommelier Natsuki Kikuya, of Museum of Sake, and her activities to enhance understanding of sake in the UK and Europe through a tailored and innovative approach.

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Sake in the UK

Japan Spotlight, July/August 2014 edition

The UK is home to increasing numbers of sake lovers, but where is the industry really at and what needs to be done to drive further growth? Journalist Tony McNicol talks to key players in the UK sake scene.

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Sake turns to global markets to sustain its traditional industry

Hot Rum Cow, 29th August 2014

The long history of sake brewing in Japan is under threat from floundering domestic sales, but international markets hold promise and potential for reviving one of Japan’s most traditional industries.

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Japan’s sake brewers target Asia

Nikkei Asian Review, 26th August 2014

Sake exports hit a new record of more than 5.4 billion yen ($51.4 million) in the first half of this year.

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For goodness’ Sake: UK’s Burgeoning Love Affair with Sake

The Independent, 17th August 2014

Kate Youde explains how sake is an increasingly popular fixture on menus as bars and restaurants capitalise on the popularity of Japanese food and the drink’s versatility in complementing other cuisines.

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Taste for things Japanese attracting more U.S. tourists

Japan Times, 13th August 2014

For the first time in nine years, Japan will see a record number of American visitors, thanks to the yen’s depreciation and a growing interest in things Japanese, such as sake and anime.

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Sake Traditions Evolve for Western Markets

New York Times, 4th August 2014

Brewery owner Kensuke Shichida talks about the role of Western markets in supporting Japan’s sake industry, and the challenges of pairing sake with non-Japanese cuisine.

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Rie Yoshitake on promoting sake around the world with the IWC

Harpers.co.uk, 31st July 2014

Anna Greenhous talks to Rie Yoshitake, UK representative of the Sake Samurai Association, about how the IWC sake category came about, its impact and success in promoting sake across the world.

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Sake Brewery to Open in Massachusetts

Boston Magazine, July 30th 2014

Dovetail is set to become Boston’s first sake brewery, with first products scheduled for market launch by the end of 2014.

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Bacteria, Not Just Brewers, Make the Sake

Nature World News, July 26th 2014

Although long understood by brewers, a new study from the University of California breaks down the science behind the role of bacteria in brewing.

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London’s Latest Sake Trends

Imbibe, July 15th 2014

Natsuki Kikuya of Museum of Sake and James Randall of Hixter discuss London’s latest sake trends, including flavoured sake, sake from unpolished rice, and aged sake.

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New Premium Sake Range Launched in the UK by Bibendum

Harpers.co.uk, 14th July 2014

Anna Greenhous profiles the new range of premium sake from four leading breweries recently launched by UK drinks supplier Bibendum, under the guidance of Natsuki Kikuya from the Museum of Sake.

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American Sake Guru, John Gautner, Releases New Sake Book

Japan Times, 5th July 2014

Japan’s leading English language newspaper reviews American sake expert John Gautner’s new book, Sake Confidential: A Beyond-the-Basics Guides to Understanding, Tasting, Selection & Enjoyment.

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Embassy of Japan Hosts IWC Tasting

Harpers.co.uk, 30th June 2014

The Embassy of Japan in the UK will be hosting a special sake tasting, featuring 13 leading breweries including the 2014 IWC trophy winners, on July 17th.

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IWC Innovator of the Year: Candidate Interview with Oliver Hilton-Jones

Harpers.co.uk, 27th June 2014

An interview with Oliver Hilton-Jones, founder of Tengu Sake, has been nominated for IWC Innovator of the Year Award. Here he talks to Anna Greenhous about his approach and his hopes for the UK sake industry.

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America’s Love Affair with Sake

Harpers.co.uk, 23rd June 2014

Harpers’ resident sake expert, Anna Greenhous, introduces the history of sake drinking in America, including profiles of a few of the best US micro breweries.

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Sake Makers Promote Sake Overseas

The Straits Times, June 18th 2014

A group of leading sake masters and brewery owners travelled to Singapore to take part in a showcase of sake, where they also discussed the best way to promote sake to international markets.

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Where to drink sparkling sake in London

Evening Standard, 23rd May 2014

Emily Jupp highlights the growing demand for sparkling sake in London, as well as some of the best places in the capital to indulge.

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Sake Hot or Cold

Harpers.co.uk, 9th May 2014

Anna Greenhous continues her special series on all things sake. This time, discover when to heat sake up and when to drink it chilled, and everything in between.

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Sake: a re-education

Berry Bros & Rudd blog, 3rd May 2014

Spirits specialist Rob Whitehead introduces his three favourite sake and suggests how they can be best enjoyed, with or without food.

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Sake, Soul of Tohoku

Zoom Japan, April 2014

An exploration of the impact of the 2011 earthquake and tsunami on the sake brewing industry of the Tohoku region of Japan, and how the brewers in the area are fighting back.

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Five Things You Never Knew About Sake

Karen Attwood, Nine Media Training, 24th April 2014

As someone who lived in Japan for four years, I love many aspects of the country’s culture – soaking in a hot spring, cherry blossom parties and karaoke, all of which are best enjoyed with a cup or two (or three) of sake!

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Japanese sake visits Parliament

Mostly Asian Food, 31st March 2014

Chrissie Walker’s review of the Sake Evening at the Houses of Parliament hosted by the British-Japanese Parliamentary Group in association with Sake Samurai UK.

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Beer maker Arran plans ‘first’ Scottish sake brewery

BBC News Scotland, 27th March 2014

A beer maker has announced plans to create what it claims will be Scotland’s first sake brewery.

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UK’s first sake brewery planned by Scotland’s Arran Brewery

Herald Scotland, 28th March 2014

Arran Brewery, located on the Isle of Arran in Scotland, is set to apply for planning permission to enable them to open the UK’s first ever sake brewery.

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Best options for entry level sake on the UK market

Harpers online, 18th March 2014

Anna Greenhous continues her series on sake by introducing her recommendations for entry level sake currently available in the UK.

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Monocle radio interview with Natsuki Kikuya

Monocle Radio, 7th March 2014 (0:36:00 onwards)

Monocle Radio interviews Natsuki Kikuya, founder of the Museum of Sake, about pairing sake with non-Japanese food and its potential for inclusion on restaurant wine lists.

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How to appreciate sake: a masterclass

Berry Bros & Rudd blog, 25th February 2014

World Sake Imports UK Sales Director Asami Tasaka conducts a masterclass with Anne McHale MW of Berry Bros & Rudd, introducing the basics of sake and how to enjoy it.

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In Sake, Japan Sees a Potential Stimulus

New York Times, 21st February 2014

As Japan confronts troubling economic data and memories of its stagnant “lost generation,” the country’s government is offering a little something to take the edge off: a bottle or two of sake.

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Bibendum launches sake range with Museum of Sake

The Drinks Business, 21st February 2014

Fine wine merchant Bibendium will be launching a boutique range of 15 sake, curated by Natsuki Kikuya of Museum of Sake, in response to increasing demand for premium sake in the UK. .

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Focus on Tengu Sake’s luxury range

Financial Times, 20th February 2014

How To Spend It profiles Tengu Sake, a carefully curated brand featuring sake from five breweries by British sake expert Oliver Hilton-Jones.

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Making sake accessible to wider audiences

Harpers online, 3rd February 2014

Harpers’ resident sake correspondent, Anna Greenhous, talks about the Discovering Sake series, broadcast on the Discovery Channel and online, as an attempt by MAFF and other stakeholders to promote sake to a wider audience.

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Exploring sake brewing traditions in Nada

Japan Today, 1st February 2014

Take a trip around Nada, the district of Kobe famed for being a centre of sake production: around 16% of all sake produced in Japan is made in this district.

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Interview with Toshie Hiraide of Sake Samurai Japan

Mostly Asian Food and Travel, 1st February 2014

An interview with Toshie Hiraide, Sake Samurai Coordinator and IWC Ambassor, by food writer Christina Walker.

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Review of WSET taster seminar

Mostly Asian Food and Travel, 1st February 2014

A review of the recent WSET taster seminar, by Christina Walker, in anticipation of the launch of a Level 3 WSET qualification in August 2014.

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Canada’s only sake brewery helps fuel drink’s popularity

Skedline, 31st January 2014

The Ontario Spring Water Sake Company, established in 2011, is the first sake brewery in eastern North American and is helping to bolster the popularity of sake in Canada with products made using California rice, Japanese koji, and Canadian spring water.

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WSET seminars precede August 2014 launch of sake qualification

The Drinks Business, 27th January 2014

The Wine and Spirit Education Trust (WSET) is conducting a series of seminars on sake in advance of the launch, in August 2014, of a Level 3 course. The Japanese Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries supported the WSET sake educators prior to the official launch of the course.

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Japan Looks to Sake to Spur Exports

Bloomberg Businessweek, 23rd January 2014

A beer maker has announced plans to create what it claims will be Scotland’s first sake brewery.

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Sake boom revives rice types as Abe eyes exports

Japan Times, 8th January 2014

Overseas shipments of sake reached an all-time high of ¥8.5 billion in the 10 months through October as they headed for a fourth annual gain, the latest data from the Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Ministry show.

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Fresh pressings from Norway’s sake brewery

Japan Times, 7th January 2014

Nøgne Ø Brewery in Norway is best known for its line of award-winning craft beers, but the company is quickly gaining a reputation for another brewed beverage: sake.

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Sake popularity surging abroad but marketing needed

Japan Times, 7th January 2014

At a luxury hotel in an affluent corner of west London, Rajan Ragesamy, a certified sake sommelier based in the United Arab Emirates, raises a wooden mallet above his head in preparation to crack open a fresh barrel.

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Drink to serenity: tasting Kyoto’s sake

Alto Magazine, 17th December 2013

Kyoto has been home to sake brewers for hundreds of years, but it is only now that overseas connoisseurs are discovering the drink’s sublime qualities, best explored by visiting the city itself.

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Oishii Japan Part 1: Sake Samurai

The Straits Times, Singapore, 10th November 2013

Introducing Sake Samurai Ayuchi Momose, who talks about telling good sake from bad and gives on tips on pairing sake with food.

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Kanpai! Spirited Away by Sake

Wall Street Journal, 25th October 2013

Owner of Tengu Sake, Oliver Hilton-Johnson, takes sake newbie Will Lyons on a whirlwind tour through sake basics and beyond.

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The French Sake Bar Revolution

Forbes Travel Guide, 14th October 2013

Profiling the burgeoning sake scene in Paris, including the city’s newest sake tasting event, launched in 2013 and featuring a panel discussion with Sake Samurai from throughout Europe.

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The Wine Lover’s Sake

Wine Muse, 8th October 2013

Review of sake tasting by Sake Samurai Timothy Sullivan and a discussion on how to approach sake as a wine lover.

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Monocle Radio

11th October 2013

Michael Booth’s interview with IWC2013 champion sake Kitaya, Kotaro Kinoshita and Rie Yoshitake for Monocle Radio. Recorded in Fukuoka, Kyushu

Enter the Sake Dojo

Mixology Made Simple, 9 September 2013

Interview with American Sake Samurai, John Gautner, on the development of the sake industry in the US and some tips on buying sake.

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Sake: Ancient and Modern by Phillip Harper

Daiwa Anglo-Japanese Foundation, 6th September 2013

Talk on the history of sake-making given by Phillip Harper, the only British toji (master brewer) in Japan, at Daiwa Anglo-Japanese Foundation in association with Japan 400.

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Anthony Rose: Sake is a product with its own pedigree and culture

The Independent, 24th August 2013

Wine writer Anthony Rose gives his take on the state of the sake market in the UK, and suggests some reasonably price and readily available options to try.

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American and Japanese Sake: Is there a difference?

Smithsonian Magazine, 20th August 2013

A discussion on the differences between sake produced in Japan and that produced overseas, in light of the increasing numbers of breweries popping up in the US and beyond.

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US Sake Master Shares the Joy of Sake

Kera News, 14th August 2013

John Gautner, an American sake guru living in Japan, gives an interview on some sake basics when back home to teach classes to the increasing number of sake fans in the US.

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Fukuoka Sake Wins IWC Champion Sake

Fukuoka Now, 2nd August 2013

An example of the significant media coverage in Japan of Kitaya brewery’s Champion Sake win at the IWC Awards Dinner in July 2013.

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Popularity of sake continues to grow in the UK

Embassy of Japan Newsletter, August 2013

The prestigious International Wine Challenge (IWC) featured some 583 entries in the sake category this year, with results being announced at the awards dinner on 18 July 2013 at Grosvenor House in London, attended by Ambassador Hayashi.

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The Drinks Business, 18th July 2013

Gilbert Winfield offers his insight on the sake served at the Embassy of Japan IWC Trophy Winner tasting, held in July 2013, and considers the future of the UK sake market.

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Sake led record surge in Japanese liquor exports to ¥20.6 billion in 2012

Japan Times, August 2013

Sake exports set a new high of ¥8.9 billion in 2012 as sales at home remained in the doldrums. Led by sake, Japan’s overall liquor exports in 2012 also climbed to a record ¥20.6 billion, the highest since 1988, when related data first became available. Sake was followed by beer and whiskey, at ¥4.4 billion and ¥2.4 billion, respectively.

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New markets, new hope


Sake expert Natsuki Kikuya talks to The Drinks Report about how overseas growth is saving Japan’s traditional brewing culture

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IWC2013 Champion Sake – Daiginjo Gokujo Kitaya

YouTube, 2nd August 2013

IWC Champion Sake for 2013 was awarded to Daiginjo Gokujo Kitaya, Kitaya Co Ltd

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IWC2013 Sake Contributor 2013

YouTube, 2nd August 2013

IWC2013 Sake Contributor 2013 was awarded to Susanne Rost-Aoki

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Rie Yoshitake – Sake and more

Mostly Food and Travel Journal

Ms.Yoshitake has called London home for more than two and a half decades and is uniquely placed to represent and support Japanese sake and wine producers.

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David Cameron ‘chugged down’ rice wine with Japan’s prime minister

The Daily Telegraph, 4th April 2013

David Cameron “chugged down” cups of rice wine during a visit to Japan last year, Yoshihiko Noda, the former Japanese prime minister has revealed.

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How to drink sake in Japan

The Telegraph Luxury, 24th January 2013

Like sushi, sake is an integral part of Japanese cuisine that foreign visitors often only have a superficial understanding of. Here, Tokyo-based world champion sake sommelier Kaoru Izuha presents her definitive guide to Japan’s national drink.

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Sake ‘never fights with food’

BBC Food, 23rd November 2012

Sake has taken off in the US and while the UK is trailing behind, the drink’s depth of flavour means experts are now matching it to non-Japanese food.

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IWC Champion Sake 2012 – Daiginjo Fukukomachi, from National trading Inc Kimura Brewery

YouTube, 8th October 2012

This Daiginjo from National Trading Inc Kimura Brewery from Tohoku in the prefecture of Akita, was praised for its soft and round character, exotic grapefruit and umami and a balanced texture and lovely length.

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Sake experts showcase Japan’s finest brews in the UK

Eat Japan, 24th July 2012

This month, as part of a unique drive to promote Japanese sake and inspire stimulating cultural exchange, four sake brewers visited three locations in the UK.

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Japan plans to push sake as export hit

China Economic Net, 4th July 2012

Move over cars and high tech. Japan, long renowned for its innovative autos and gadgets, now hopes to turn sake and other local spirits into export hits as well.

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Wine Challenge brings sake contest to Japan

The Japan Times, 8th June 2012

At 9 a.m. on the morning of May 28, the 40 judges who had been invited to arbitrate in the 2012 International Wine Challenge sake competition convened in the Japan Sake and Shochu Makers Association building in Tokyo’s Shinbashi district.

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Sake’s comeback symbolises Japan’s recovery

The Independent, 4th March 2012

One year on, the drink is the spirit of a nation’s recovery from the tsunami

Sake, the national drink of Japan which for years has been in steep decline, has become the very spirit of the country’s recovery from the devastation of last March’s tsunami.

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IWC Sake Samurai Inauguration

YouTube, 20th January 2012

In October 2011, Andrew Reed, International Wine Challenge, was inaugurated in to the Sake Samurai Association in Kyoto, Japan for contribution to the Sake industry. This is a rare and honourable privilege. This video captures the ceremony.

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IWC and Sake Samurai Masterclass and Discovery Tasting

Eat Japan, 22nd April 2011

On April 19, the 5th Annual IWC and Sake Samurai Sake Masterclass and Discovery Tasting was held at the Barbican Centre, London.

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Born: Ginsen 2008, Katoukichibee Shouten – IWC 2010 Champion Junmai

YouTube, 14th October 2010

Junmai from Fukui gives a wonderful freshness, a touch of petals with a floral bouquet. Green fruity, honey, apricot jam. Medium long finish.

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Learn more about sake in Japan by Michael Booth, author of Sushi & Beyond and award winning food and travel writer.

Japan National Tourism Organization, July 2010

It is, perhaps, ironic that the coolest, hippest, must-have drink of the moment – considered the height of sophistication in cutting edge bars from New York to Barcelona to London – is made by some of the most tradition – conscious firms in Japan, and in some of the country’s most atmospheric and historic premises.

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Sake Samurai Association at the IWC Awards Dinner 2009

YouTube, 11th March 2010

Kochi Saura speaks to Ray O’Connor at the International Wine Challenge Awards Dinner 2010

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Obsessives – Sake

YouTube, 5th August 2008

Beau Timken of True Sake is proud to be called a sake samurai. His fanaticism comes across in his enthusiasm for junmai, daiginjo, and ginjo, and he rails against those who encourage libation without education. Take the hint: learn from Beau.

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Sake Samurai – Mr. Keisuke Irie, The Interview

Japan in Melbourne

Together with the spread of Japanese sake culture in the world, we wish to bring the tourism industry back to life. To support that, we are actively conducting business promotions, consulting, and performance promotions. Sake lectures and the sake business, including the coordinator of “Sake Samurai” diverge into many branches.

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