Spring 2021

One year has passed since we last met in person. What an unbelievably challenging time we had, and I hope we are all near the end of the tunnel. Spring is not far away. Sake business in the UK suffered tremendously and sake export from Japan shrunk over 40 % in 2020 mostly due to the closure of restaurants.  However, the silver lining is that online sake sites are being developed and people can now buy sake online and enjoy at home. Please refer to ‘where to buy sake’ list on our website to find your favourite sake. Sake Samurai UK will also provide the lists of future sake events voluntarily so that you can stay in touch with the circle of sake.  Please let us know if you are planning any for the future.  Meanwhile, here are some reports on the recent sake events in London.

A decade of Recovery in Fukushima and Tohoku

A memorial online event from London

11th March 2021

On the 11th March 2021, exactly 10 years since the unforgettable disaster in Tohoku, the Fukushima Prefecture Association headed by Mr Yoshio Mitsuyama organised a memorial event online from London. Rie Yoshitake, as a Fukushima Tourism Ambassador, co-hosted a one-hour programme and presented the Fukushima sake promotional video Sake Wonderland Fukushima. The online broadcast reached an audience of thousands all over the world including Japan and the UK. The programme was composed of various short videos and showed the journey of Fukushima after the disaster as well as encouraging messages from Mr Eddie Jones, Lady Victoria Borwick, Torayasu Hotei and the Mayor of London’s Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea Cllr Gerald Hargreaves.

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Sake & The Incredible Power of Koji

A masterclass presented by the UK Bartenders Guild

7th March 2021

A live masterclass was held on Zoom by industry leaders exploring one of the fundamentals of Japanese beverage culture. The event was sponsored by the Japan Sake & Shochu Makers Association (JSS), commissioned by Miho Komatsu and the UK Bartenders Guild http://ukbartendersguild.co.uk, and attended by over 200 members of UKBG. This was the first session of their Kokushu Japanese alcoholic beverages project, and focused on the Koji, the magical power behind sake, its cultivation and how different strains create different taste and aroma profiles in Sake.

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Why Sell Sake in the UK? 

Discover trade secrets from Market Experts

Japan House London
26th February 2021

In partnership with the National Tax Agency of Japan, Japan House London commissioned an exciting trade webinar to vitalise the UK sake market. The event was divided into two parts. Rie Yoshitake, the leading sake ambassador in the UK, delivered a lecture focusing on the thriving export of sake and the UK market’s transitions, characteristics, trends and prospects. Two sake makers, Kamoizumi and Dewazakura, also joined from Japan and shared their experiences as pioneers in the UK market.

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A panel discussion for creating sake tourism in Miyagi & Tohoku

Sake as the gateway to local tourism

Online panel discussion, London
25th February 2021

‘Sake tourism’ has the potential to expand beyond the walls of the brewery and into the surrounding region. Following a successful start-off event ‘Miyagi – A passage to Tohoku’ at the Embassy of Japan in the UK in 2020, INOUTBOUND in Miyagi commissioned by the National Tax Agency and Yoshitake & Associates UK teamed up again. This year, the team focused on creating inbound sake tourism to Miyagi in collaboration with Urakasumi Sake brewery. Are sake and breweries going to be an attraction to bring tourists from the UK and Europe? How could that be possible?

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