Akashi Brewery is located on the edge of Osaka Bay in Hyogo. Founded over 150 years ago in a fertile land, ideal for growing rice, and many clean fresh springs provide the area with very pure water. Conditions that have led to the region being famous for both its sake and its seafood. The methods have remained traditional, the brewing still being done by hand and in small quantities, as it has been for centuries.
Akashi Tai sakes
Below, all the Akashi Tai references available on our online store.
Akita Prefecture, Japon
Akita Seishu's Kariho Brewery was founded in 1913 in Akita Prefecture. This region is located in the far northwest of Honshu Island, a mountainous area with very severe winters with heavy snowfall. Add to that a lot of great rice and some very pure spring water, and we have an ideal environment for the production of magnificent sake. The particularity of the brewery is to use spring water rich in minerals, while elsewhere in the region the water is rather soft.
This allows them to produce drier sake with a crisp character. Akita Seishu's Kariho brewery has maintained its traditional brewing methods, such as the use of horizontal presses, without going through mechanical press, and has made a specialty of the old production method known as "Yamahaï".
Akita Seishu sakes
Below, all the references of Akita Seishu available on our online store.
Amabuki Brewery is located in northwest Kyushu, in Saga Prefecture, at the foot of Amabukiyama Mountain, hence its name. With more than 300 years of history as it was founded during the Genroku period (1688-1704), it specializes in the extraction and use of yeasts from the various flowers from their direct environment. Used in the production of their sakes, they impart exuberant aromas, an unmistakable style that makes all the originality of the brewery.
The rice used is grown in the Saga plain using the so-called "aïgamo" method, which consists of raising ducks in the rice fields to feed on weeds and insects. Thus the rice fields are exempt from any treatment. The water used is soft, it comes from the Sefuri mountain. We are fortunate to present a selection of three sakes produced from three different yeasts.
Amabuki Shuzo Sakes
Below, all the references of Amabuki Shuzo available on our online store.
Miyazaki Prefecture, Japon
Ariake Sangyo is a Japanese company founded in 1963 by Toshio Odawara in the Fushimi district of Kyoto, the heart of sake production in that region. Its original business was to supply brewers with wooden crates for transporting sake bottles. Ariake Sangyo is the last independent cooperage in Japan. It continues to make its barrels by hand, with old-fashioned carbonization.
In the early 1980s, as ties with the spirits world grew closer, Ariake decided to build its first cooperage in Miyazaki. It was on the island of Kyushu, a vast land and the birthplace of shochu, that a simple idea was born: to provide shochu and whisky producers with the means to age their juices. The quality of the casks it produces will make its reputation and its success until today.
The tradition of ageing distilled beverages is relatively recent in Japan and, although adopted nearly a century ago, particularly for whisky, it is largely inspired by Western habits. It is in this context that this very innovative project, called "Taruski", was launched by the current director of Ariake Sangyo, Nobuyuki Odawara. Driven by the spirit of innovation that characterises his family, his objective is to move towards the use of local wood species with the idea of seeing a new generation of spirits emerge, spirits marked by a pure Japanese identity. We would like to take you on a journey to discover his latest experiments, the fruit of collaboration with the Oishi Shuzo shochu distillery in Kumamoto.
Asahara Shuzo is a family brewery located in Saïtama Prefecture, in the heart of the hills that precede the Chichibu mountains, northwest of Tokyo. It was founded in 1882 by Zenjiro Asahara when he was only 29 years old. Today Kenichi Asahara runs the factory, he is the representative of the 5th generation.
The locality of Saïtama is a relatively new terroir in the production of sake and does not enjoy the same reputation as other more "classic" regions. A recent story that has prompted Asahara Shuzo to innovate a lot to gain attention. Today, it offers products with a strong character, worn by two very young Toji in their thirties. Dynamic brewers and, above all, trained directly by Kenichi Asahara, a master in the art of handling yeasts.
Sakes from Asahara Shuzo
Below, all the references of Asahara Shuzo available on our online store.
Asamaï brewery started its activity in 1917 in Bonchi Yokote, in Akita Prefecture, north of Honshu. A region of plains known for the quality of rice, for the quality of water and its very cold winters; ideal conditions for good quality sake. During the 18th century, when the government tried to limit the production of sake, this region has strongly protested to preserve this tradition and went above this prohibition. Thanks to that, many family breweries were kept active, while at the same time, other regions were losing. Asamaï Kura is certainly the best known brewery of Akita Prefecture.
It produces only Junmaï sake, which are filtered according to the technique of "funeshibori", through tissues arranged in wooden trays.
Asamaï Shuzo sakes
Below, all the references from Asamaï Shuzo available on our online store.
Choya was founded by the Kondo family in 1914 who first dedicated themselves to viticulture. In 1959, the company made the historic decision to start production of Umeshu. Since that date, it has implemented very strict standards for each stage of our production, from the careful selection of fruits, to the soaking process, including maturation. The idea is to offer the Japanese public a stable and high quality product. Today, Choya is the largest producer of Umeshu in the world. Its mission is to produce and promote this product by continuing its development as at its origin, on the basis of simple and natural ingredients.
Below, all the references of Choya available on our online store.
Founded in 1918, Chugoku Jozo brewery is located in Hiroshima area. Producer of liqueurs, sake and shochu, they started in 1990 the production of whisky by creating the "Togouchi" range. Their range is marked by great finesse and precision with aging in a single location, a 361 meter long tunnel dug in 1970. Ideal maturing conditions with a constant temperature of 14°C and a humidity of 80%, allowing slow extraction of aromas.
Chugoku Jozo whiskies
Below, all the references of Chugoku Jozo available on our online store.
Daishichi Shuzo Sake Brewery has been located in Nihonmatsu City, Fukushima Prefecture, since 1752. Run by the Ota family for ten generations, it combines traditional methods and modern technology for the production of high-quality sakes. It is at the forefront of the use of the Kimoto method, a method that is longer and more tedious than more modern methods, but for an interesting result with products with unique characteristics.
Daishichi Shuzo sakes
Below, all the references of Daishichi Shuzo available on our online store.
Located in the small town of Akashi on the shore of Seto Sea, Eigashima has been brewing various traditional Japanese spirits since 1888, including sake and shochu. As early as 1919, intrigued by the trials and projects of their Japanese colleagues, they envisioned whiskey distillation. They thus obtain the first license to distill Whisky in Japan.
After several production attempts made in their infrastructures, they launched the construction of the Eigashima (formerly White Oak) distillery in 1984. Built according to Scottish models, they designed fine whiskies there in small quantities. Indeed, this is a largely manual production carried out by the same local artisans who set about making more traditional eaux-de-vie.
Eigashima Distillery products
Below, the references of Eigashima Distillery available on our online store.
Hiroshima Prefecture, Japan
Enoki Shuzo Brewery has been established in 1899 on the small island of Kurahashi, in Hiroshima Prefecture. This region called Setonaïkaï, corresponding to the arm of the sea between Honshu and Shikoku, enjoys a temperate climate and has soft water, known as “nansui”.
Enoki Shuzo produces elegant sakes which are regularly rewarded with distinctions in international competitions. She is best known for being at the origin of the Kijoshu technique, now used in the world of sake and consisting of adding sake to the vats at the time of fermentation. It is a specialty that is perfectly illustrated with their aged sake, Hanahato Kijoshu.
Enoki Shuzo sakes
Below, all the references of Enoki Shuzo brewery available on our online store.
Fuji-Nishiki Shuzo Brewery is located in Fujinomiya City, Shizuoka, at the foot of the majestic Mount Fuji. The brewery was founded in 1688 and is now in its 18th generation, brewing sake using methods and skills acquired over its 300+ year history.
Fuji Nishiki's sakes are 100% Shizuoka and more, as the brewery grows its own rice, Homarefuji, on its own property. Homarefuji is a neighbour of Yamadanishiki, the grain is large and the polish can be substantial. The yeast is also native to Shizuoka. It gives a very fresh nose. Finally, the spring water comes from Mount Fuji, it is naturally filtered by the bedrock and drawn from a depth of 30m.
Fuji Nishiki Shuzo Sakes
Hereafter, all the Fuji Nishiki references available on our online shop.
Fukuchiyo Shuzō is located in the city of Kashima, south of Saga. This small traditional brewery has been producing sake of exceptional quality since 1885, internationally recognized since its title of Champion in 2011 at the CBI, the most prestigious sake competition in the world. Its owner, Mr. Iimori, is very involved in promoting sake outside of Japan, trying not only to change his city of Kashima, but also attract the attention of fans from all over the world to his region.
Fukuchiyo Shuzō sakes
Below, all the sake from Fukuchiyo Shuzō available on our online store.
The sake Brewery of Hakkaï Jozo, also known as Hakkaisan, is located in Niigata prefecture, one of the most famous areas for sake production. This is one of the largest breweries, in the world and has nicely developed on a zone rich in natural resources with a perfect climate for sake brewing. Spring water is brought to the Kura directly from the Mont Hakkai by a pipeline, and rice used in the production is cleverly selected from the best sake rice varieties (Goyakumangoku and Yamadanishiki in particular). Production of Hakkaisan is large, and they succeed to give beautiful impressions of richness and creaminess to their sakes.
Hakkaï Jozo Sakes
Below, all the references of the Hakkaï Jozo house available on our online store.
Hakutsuru Brewery is located in the Nada district of Kobe, a famous sake-producing location. Nada has high quality spring water and cold winters, two essential elements for making sake. Located in the hometown of Tamba toji sake brewers guild, the skills of brewers locally played an important role in sake quality. Today, Hakutsuru is one of the largest sake producers in Japan in terms of volume and influence.
Below, all the references of the Hakutsuru available on our online store.
Hayashi Honten is located on the southern border of the Gifu region, almost perfectly in the middle of Japan. This brewery is the property of a woman, who is the 5th generation owner of this typical family brewery. Hayashi Honten is very interesting because of the variety of the techniques they master for the production process; from ancient techniques to make Yamahaï, to the most modern one giving the purest Daïginjo, without forgetting the capacity to age sake and produce a very nice Koshu.
Hayashi Honten sakes
Below, all the Hayashi Honten sakes available on our online store.
Iejima Distillery is a young factory that exists since 2011. It is set on the island Iejima, west of the main island of Okinawa. Historically, it is a relatively poor area of Japan because the lack of water in these semi-tropical regions do not allow the cultivation of rice. Sugarcane has been cultivated there since 1630.
From this local cane, a former Awamori distiller produces rum. The policy of the factory is very clear: intervene as little as possible on any steps before distillation (for example, no refrigeration of fermentation tanks). The idea is that working in the most natural way possible, the soul of Iejima island will be transmitted to rum, and will travel outside the boundaries of the island.
Iejima Distillery Rums
Below, all the Iejuma Brewery references available on our online store.
Iinuma Meijo Brewery is located in the direction of Nikko from Tokyo, on the borders of "Suginamiki road" famous for being lined with cedars for more than 35 km. We are in the heart of the Tochigi prefecture, a region known for the quality of rice, water, and for the preserved natural environment. This small brewery offers a series of special cuvées called Sugata corresponding to only 10% of their production.
Iinuma Meijo sakes
Below, all the references of the Iinuma Meijo available on our online store.
The Imadashuzo Hoten brewery is located in the region of Hiroshima, facing Setonaïkaï sea, a zone with a moderate climate and known for its soft water (nasui). This water is therefore very difficult to use when making sake and the producers in Hiroshima have had to make constant efforts to become a important region in sake world.
A Imadashuzo, the Toji who officiates is a woman, which is rather rare in the sake industry. She experiments a lot, especially by taking old methods and making them more modern, like "funeshibori", the filtering is done in wooden tubs through canvas bags. She also uses ancient rice strains such as Hattanso, the ancestor of Hattanishiki.
Imada Shuzo sakes
Below, all the references of Imada Shuzo available on our online store.
Established in 1767, Imayo Tsukasa truly began its history as an Izakaya and sake shop. It was in the middle of Meiji era that it became a brewery and devoted all its efforts to production. The factory is located in Nuttari, the historic heart of Japanese fermented products such as miso, soy sauce, and of course sake.
Imayo Tsusaka is today an emblematic and prestigious representative of sake producers of Niigata. Products are in the purest "tanrei Karakuchi" style, lively, dry, and thirst-quenching.
Imayo Tsukasa sakes
Below, all the references of Imayo Tsukasa available on our online store.
Established at the foot of Tsukuba Moutain for 13 generations, Inaba Shuzo is a micobrewery that uses its own spring water and rice produced in the surroundings for the preparation of sake. Since 2000, a woman named Nobuko Inaba is in charge of production. She is one of the few Toji women in this still very masculine world.
At Inaba Shuzo, all stages of production are carried out by hand, including those conventionally mechanized such as washing rice or filtering and pressing. This goes all the way to Koji and Moromi where temperatures are not measured, but simply felt by the brewer. An ancestral working method illustrated here by the “Stella” cuvées, a series exclusively composed of Daïginjos produced in only seven barrels per year.
Inaba Shuzo sakes
Below, all the references from Inaba Shuzo available on our online store.
Inoue Gomei Brewery is located at the heart of Fukuoka Prefecture, along the Koishiwara River, between the superb panorama of Mino mountain and the surrounding rice fields. Since its creation in 1911, the brewery has produced more than 90% junmaï sake, using local rice strains, including Yamadanishiki for the production of their best vintages. Thanks to their traditional work, they regularly earns high distinctions in most prestigious competitions in Japan.
Inoue Gomei sakes
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Maruyama Nori was established in 1854, at the end of the Edo period, in Nihonbashi district, Tokyo. Originally specialized in trading very high quality dried seaweed, it supplied the perfect seaweed to the aristocratic gourmets of Kyoto. Its reputation spread more widely. Jugetsudo Tea House emanates from this organization and was created more recently, in 1980, with the same desire to share the excellence of taste through the art of Japanese tea.
Below, all the Jugetsudo references available on our online store.
Kaetsu Shuzo brewery was originally founded in 1880 in Hukushima Prefecture, then was transferred to Niigata in 1886. Niigata Prefecture faces the Japan Sea, the climate is continental with very hot summers, and cold and snowy winters. The brewery is located in the Aga-machi town where the Agano River and Tokonami meet. It is also surrounded by mountains. This area gave birth to one of the noblest "Sakamaï" rice (rice dedicated to the production of sake). The water quality is excellent with natural sources nearby that give a pure and fresh water. An excellent sake region.
Kaetsu Shuzo sakes
Below, all the Kaetsu Shuzo references available on our online store.
Kameizumi Shuzo brewery has been established since 1897 on Shikoku Island, the smallest of the four main islands of Japanese archipelago. In this warm and picturesque locality of Tosa, Kochi Prefecture, between mountains and ocean, producing sake is no an easy task. The region is hot and humid, conditions that are not really optimal. Setting up a brewery therefore requires considerable work and in-depth knowledge of fermentation techniques. A challenge that Kameizumi Shuzo's small team took up with panache.
Five people who produce there premium sakes in low volumes, ranging from dry Junmaï to Daïginjo full of fruit and freshness. A particular work has been carried out with the use of a yeast strain called "CEL-24", created by the local association of sake producers. By sticking to the use of traditional methods, Kameizumi Shuzo brewery is quietly establishing its reputation well outside the prefecture limits. A great success when we know that the sake of the region had until then been consumed mainly on the spot.
Kameizumi Shuzo sakes
Below, all the references of Kameizumi Shuzo available on our online store.
Kameman Shuzo brewery is a relatively recent venture as it was established only in 1916 by Chinju TAKEDA, a young doctor, heir to a long dynasty of doctors in Kumamoto region. The creation of the brewery was decided following a rather funny combination of circumstances. Indeed, in this rural area, it was common for local farmers to pay in bags of rice, including their medical consultations. Each year, Dr Takeda saw the bags accumulate over the months without being able to consume everything. This is why he decided to create the brewery, to transform rice received for good care into sake!
One difficulty, however, was added to the project: the Prefecture of Kumamoto is located in the extreme southwest of Japan. A temperate and sunny area, that is to say a climate not very adapted for sake production which was traditionally done in the northern part of the country. The work on yeasts was essential and the scientific knowledge of Dr Takeda was decisive in the development of ferments capable of working under these latitudes. The gamble paid off, and Kameman Shuzo can now claim to be the southernmost sake brewery in Japan. It continues to work on the same basis as those developed by Dr Takeda in 1916, using only local rice and without refrigeration of vats.
Kameman Shuzo sakes
Below, all the Kameman Shuzo references available on our online store.
Katokichibee Shoten sake brewery has been established in 1860 in the heart of Fukui prefecture. It is now the 11th generation that supports the production of using traditional methods.
Katokichibee Shoten develops its own yeasts and uses excellent quality spring water from Mount Hakusan. All combined with Yamadanishiki and Gohyakumangoku rice with an average semaibuai of 38%, the highest in Japan. The sakes are matured at a temperature of -4 ° C and marketed once the maturity of the umami has been reached.
Katokichibee Shoten sakes
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Arita's porcelains are mainly known in Europe as "Imari", from the small port from which these porcelains left for Europe, exported by the first Dutch merchants. These porcelains have been made since the beginning of the 17th century in the small town of Arita, in Saga prefecture, north of Kyushu. Since 1616 to be precise, a turning point in the history because this moment marked the end of the Chinese monopoly on the use of Kaolin for the production of fine porcelain.
Japan was exporting until 1757, until Edo era when the government started controling export of these products. They became less available abroad, and distribution was more focussed on Japanese territory. During the 19th century, exports restarted thanks to Arita porcelains which were presented at international fairs and exhibitions, again contributing to their global reputation. Many makers (Kamamoto) and artists produce Arita porcelain. Some of them are also recognized as "living human treasure" in Japan.
The products from workshops
Below, all Arita porcelains available on our online store.
Niigata Prefecture, Japon
Founded in 1881, a relatively young brewery, Kikusui is still run by the same family, currently the 5th generation. Over the years, Kikusui has endured many hardships, the low availability of rice for brewing, labor shortages and declining sales, during the difficult post-war years.
But the greatest challenges were the Niigata earthquake in 1964, then the Kaetsu floods in 1966 and 1967 where, for two consecutive years, the brewery was destroyed and washed away. Despite adversity, Kikusui is still committed to producing the best quality sake and as drink preferences change over time, Kikusui is constantly developing new products. From humble beginnings, Kikusui is today a major player in sake worlf, but has stuck to her original vision of creating sake that can be enjoyed by a large audience.
Below, all the Kikusui references available on our online store.
Kochi Prefecture, Japan
Kikusui Distillery is located in Kuroshio, Kochi Prefecture, on Shickoku Island. It is one of the oldest rum distilleries in Japan. The almost semi-tropical climate here is suitable for the cultivation of sugar cane and Kikusui cultivates its own raw material, a guarantee of quality because they control the entire production process, from planting sugar cane to bottling.
Nara Prefecture, Japan
Kitaoka Honten brewery is located in Yoshino, south of Nara, a city that was the first capital of Japan in the 8th century, at the eastern end of the Silk Road. From a historical and spiritual point of view, this mountainous area is certainly one of the richest places in the country, and is listed as UNESCO World Heritage Site for the countless temples and pilgrimage sites, for the Emperor's summer residence and remarkable natural sites.
Kitaoka Honten brewery started in 1868, but has a family history spanning on seven generations. These soy sauce, oil and sake producers saw their destiny transformed under the spur of one of their sons, Sojuro. Understanding the interest he could derive from the immediate surroundings, he turned to the production of fruit and flower based drinks. A successful bet since Kitaoka's products are now recognized throughout Japan for the precision with which they transcribe the scent of flowers.
Kitaoka Honten products
Below, all the references of Kitaoka Honten available on our online store.
Kagoshima Prefecture, Japan
Komasa Jyozo was founded in Kagoshima in 1883 by Komasa Ichisuke, and has since specialized in the production of shochu. The distillery launched its first gin in 2018, a new challenge based on more than 130 years of history and on the mastery of traditional shochu production techniques. A gin made from juniper berries, spices and citrus peels.
Komasa Jyozo products
Below, the references of Komasa Jyozo available on our online store.
Saga Prefecture, Japan
Founded in the late Edo period, Komatsu Shuzo is located in the northern part of Saga Prefecture, on Kyushu Island. At the heart of a generous and preserved natural environment, this micro-brewery still works today according with entirely artisanal methods and the volumes that come out are very limited. If the quality of their sakes is undeniable and really worth a look, it is another of their products that caught our attention, their mirin which it has been producing since 2012.
Komatsu Shuzo products
Below, the Komatsu Shuzo references available on our online store.
Gifu Prefecture, Japan
Kosaka Shuzojo is located in the center of Mino city and received his brewing license from the Owari-Tokugawa clan during the Edo period. The brewery was built in 1772, an imposing structure, the main building is recognized as national treasure. Still owned by the Kosaka family, it is today the 12th generation of brewers who express a know-how passed down through generations.
A long history for these sakes, initially very popular with the local population, before spreading much more widely in the country. The filtered water of the Nagaragawa River, the use of high-quality rice, a plain surrounded by mountains, very cold in winter, the environment is ideal for the production of sake. We are pleased to present Hyakyshun, the hundred spring sake, promise of long life.
Miyazaki Prefecture, Japan
Founded in 1885, Kuroki Honten has been dedicated to the production of shochu since its origin. A passion, but also a commitment to protect and transmit the shochu culture. Kuroki Honten cultivates its own raw materials harvested by hand and recycles the waste resulting from the production of shochu into organic fertilizers. Products are made in a traditional way, from the selection of raw materials, the manufacture of the koji, the distillation and the aging, the human hand intervenes at each stage of production.
Kuroki Honten Shochus
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Miyazaki Prefecture, Japan
Kyoya Distillery was founded in 1834 in Aburasu, the heart of Miyazaki Prefecture, the historical center of shochu production in Japan. Of course, Kyoya primarily produces shochu, continuing this long tradition, but Kyoya also likes challenges.
By mixing respect for old techniques and modern methods Kyoya developed this Yuzu Gin, a gin on a basis of shochu produced according to the old Japanese technique of multiple parallel fermentations, coupled with a low pressure distillation at less than 100°C, for the modern side. Yuzu Gin positions itself unashamedly in the super premium spirits category with, for Kyoya, the underlying intention to present to the world the spirit at its source and thereby expressing the whole soul of Miyazaki.
Born from encounters and a trip to Japan, the idea of creating a traditional Sakagura in France may seem original. So does its location; in the heart of a region well known for its viticultural excellence, in the middle of the vineyards of Condrieu, Côte-Rôtie and Saint Joseph.
On closer inspection, what might have seemed to be a handicap has turned out to be a formidable asset: the taste for excellence mixed with that of tradition, the search for alliances with dishes in order to magnify the cuisine that our two cultures have refined over time. In Japan as in France, the research is the same. Here is the brewery Les Larmes du Levant and its first vintages of French sake, made from the best varieties of sake rice in Japan, brewed with pure water from Mount Pilat, then matured in vats, with all the care and love that the brewers gave it during its maturation.
Larmes du Levant sakes
Hereafter, all the references of Les Larmes du Levant available on our online store.
Okinawa Prefecture, Japan
Masahiro Shuzo, located at the southern end of the main island of Okinawa, has been producing traditional Awamori for 130 years.
With a grandfather who was chef at Ryukyu Castle, the rights to produce Awamori were easily granted by authorities, and so began the story and a reputation, forged on a style that was truly about finesse and elegance. A perfect illustration of Masahiro Shuzo's flagship product, Uminchu.
Masahiro Shuzo products
Hereafter, all the references of Masahiro Shuzo available on our online store.
Iwase Prefecture, Japan
Founded in the year 26 of the Meiji era under the name Iwaizumi, the brewery later changed its name to "Masuda Shuzo", the name of its founder Masuda Masuizumi. It was one of the first Kura to produce Ginjo-style sake, more than 40 years ago, at a time when this category was as little known as the methods of making it. The tradition continues today thanks to the remarkable work of today's Toji, Mr. Hatakana, 72 years old!
Masuda Shuzoten sakes
Hereafter, all the references of Masuda Shuzoten available on our online store.
Préfecture de Kyoto, Japan
Located in the beautiful region of Fushimi, south of Kyoto, one of the most popular areas for sake in Japan, the brewery Masuda Tokubee is bordered by three rivers. Thanks to the access to water and transportation by river route, many breweries are located in the area from the 17th century. Masuda Tokubee has been installed there since 1675 and is the oldest brewery in Fushimi. She revived the "Doburoku", the "homemade" sake, unfiltered, unpasteurized and sparkling; Masuda Tokubee is a pioneer in bottling Nigorizake, the unfiltered sake.
Masuda Tokubee sakes
Below, all the references of Masuda Tokubee available on our online store
Kochi Prefecture, Japan
It was during the Edo period that the Minami family's business was born. They were initially wholesalers, based in the town of Yasuda, a blessed place between the sea and the mountains with the Yanase forest nearby. The Yasuda River passes right by the brewery before flowing into Tosa Bay. This is a very popular place for fishermen because of the excellent quality of the water and the abundance of fish. It is precisely this water that provides the essential element for brewing sake and has earned Minami Shuzojo the nickname "Tamanoi" (the fountain "with water like a jewel"). Their annual production volumes are small, only 300 goku (54,000 litres), a small kura that has always focused on the quality of its sake.
The region is known for its heavy sake drinkers, but this did not stop Sadaharu Minami, the former Kuramoto, from feeling the need to offer his products outside the prefecture. In 1998, he started a new brand called "Minami" with the ambition to conquer the country.
Minami Shuzojo sakes
Here are all the Minami references available in our online shop.
Nara Prefecture, Japan
Miyoshino Jozo is an artisanal brewery located in Yoshino region, Nara Prefecture, a locality named "Senbonzakura" in reference to the many cherry trees that cover the surrounding hills.
The Shoryaku-ji temple in Yoshino is a place where during the Muromachi period (1336-1573) a group of monks produced their own sake using a special technique called "Bodaïmoto". To prevent the moromi (fermenting rice) from spoiling, the monks had found a trick to start the fermentation with spring water in which a certain amount of rice had been soaked. It was later shown that this soaking significantly increased the lactic acid concentration. This compound is essential to prevent bacterial growth at the start of fermentation. Thus, by this method, they ensured the good health of their production.
Ancient writings reporting the details of this method were discovered by chance and have been studied and put into practice. Miyoshino Jozo's brewery is one of the few breweries in Japan that uses this method for making sake. The result is a very typical sake with nice acidity. Exceptionally, all their sake is produced in barrels made of sugui wood, the Japanese cedar.
Miyoshino Jozo sakes
Hereafter, all the references of Miyoshino Jozo available on our online store.
Nadagiku Shuzo has been established since 1910 in the city of Himeji, Hyogo Prefecture. A locality made famous by its white egret-like castle but also, in the world of sake, by the exceptional quality of rice produced here.
Descendant of the "Kawaishi Alcohol Limited", the Kawashi family aims to be a sake brewer, restaurant and center of interest for anyone wishing to learn more about sake. More than 100,000 visitors are welcomed there each year! Production is handled by Misa Kawaishi, the youngest of three daughters of the current owner's, and one of only few women in Japan to belong to the Nambu Toji. She is assisted by three kurabito. Nadagiku Shuzo has switched in few decades from mass production to a very small unit of only 200 goku (36,000 liters per year). Sakes are made only with local Hyogo rice, and the average semaïbuai is 59%, almost an exclusive focus on the Ginjo category.
Nadagiku Shuzo sakes
Below, all the Nadagiku Shuzo references available on our online store.
Wakayama Prefecture, Japan
Nakano BC is located south of Osaka, in the heart of Wakayama Prefecture. It started by brewing soybeans, but its field of activity is now much broader, ranging from the brewing of sake to the production of various alcoholic beverages such as Umeshu and shochu. It also produces plum fruit juices, a speciality of the prefecture. It is known to welcome many visitors throughout the year who come to admire their beautiful garden. Their sake is carefully handcrafted by highly skilled toji and kurabito who take advantage of the spring water from the Fujishiro mountain range.
Nakano BC sakes
Hereafter, all the references of Nakano BC available on our online store.
Kagoshima Prefecture, Japan
Nishi Shuzo is installed for over a century and a half in the hills of Kagoshima, in the of Kyushu, the southernmost of the four Japanese main islands. They produce shochu from different ingredients, but their specialty is by far sweet potato based shochu, typical of Kagoshima region. Nishi Shuzo itself cultivates sweet potatoes use for the production of their shochus and works closely with local farmers to continually improve the quality of products.
Nishi Shuzo has, over time, raised a formidable challenge, the challenge to produce shochu with remarkable taste qualities, very refined, using completely traditional methods. Nishi Shuzo shochus are now recognized all around Japan as a benchmark for quality and this success is exported internationally.
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Tokyo Prefecture, Japan
Ogasawara archipelago is located in the Pacific, about 1000 km south of Tokyo prefecture to which it legally belongs. It is composed of about thirty islands enjoying a semi-tropical climate, and beautiful environment which was recognized as "remarkable area" by UNESCO. Around 1830 fishermen from other regions in the Pacific began to stop and practice bartering with inhabitants of the island. They discover rum and gradually understand that they take advantage of the climate to start sugarcane production.
This is now the mainstay of the island, with the production of fruit. Ogasawara Rum was born in the late 19th century from the distillation of molasses-based product. At the time people called this "awazake", and now this is the oldest rum in Japan.
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Located on Iki Island, in the north of Nagasaki Prefecture, in the Genkai Sea, between Japan and Korea, Omoya Shuzo Brewery was founded in 1924 by Kakuzo Yokoyama. Since 2018, the brewery has had a production unit with the best equipment, based on a long tradition and valuable know-how. It is said that barley shochu originates from the island of Iki.
It offers an amazing combination of shochu produced by hand, using traditional techniques, and shochu produced using state-of-the-art equipment.
The shochu from Omoya Shuzo
Here below, all the references from Omoya Shuzo distillery avaliable on our website.
Hyogo Prefecture, Japan
The establishment of Ozeki dates back to 1711 by Osakaya Chobei in the village of Imazu. It was then called "Manryo" before changing its name to "Ozeki" more than a century later. Totally destroyed by fire due to an air raid during the Second World War, it started from practically nothing in a spirit of innovation that will lead it to become one of the undisputed market leaders. For example, the company sponsored Sumo tournaments and launched the first "One Cup" for the Tokyo Olympic Games. Since 1979, Ozeki has also been producing in the United States to satisfy local demand.
Below, all the references of Oseki available on our online store.
Ibaraki Prefecture, Japan
Located since three centuries in the Ibaraki region, in the north of Tokyo, the Raïfuku brewery is located in a magnificent environment with very pure water coming from the Tsukuba mountains. Its speciality is developing yeast from flowers "Hanakobo" (hana for flowers and kobo for yeast). Therefor, from different flowers it produces a broad variety of yeast that are going to enable the production of very unique taste sakes.
Raïfuku Shuzo sakes
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Shimane Prefecture, Japan
Sakemochida Honten is a small family brewery that has been producing traditional sake for over 140 years in Izumo, Shimane Prefecture. Since ancient times, Izumo has been deeply involved in sake making and is considered by many to be the birthplace of Nihonshu. Legend tells that all Gods (and there are eight million of them in Shintoism), used to gather at the Izumo Matsuo Shrine for a feast that lasts 180 days. The street where Sakemochida Honten is located is called "Kitano Kaido", a classic neighborhood where you can still admire the ancient wooden buildings, a must to visit.
Sakemochida Honten sakes
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Préfecture d'Okinawa, Japon
The Distillery of Mr. Sakimoto is located on the island of Yonaguni, one of the most remote places from Japanese main islands. In fact, Yonguni is at 2 000km southwest of Tokyo, and only 100 km away from Taiwan! In the past, Yonaguni was part of the Kingdom of Ruykyu which included the islands in the surrounding, doing the junction between Japan and Chinese mainland. Economically, it was a very active area. Mr. Sakimoto is one of three producers of the island which counts only 1300 inhabitants. Since 1927, the distillery produces very qualitative awomori, following an ancestral production process that uses traditional stills, heated with direct fired. It also produces the Hanazake, a special version of awamori, a beverage 60% alcohol, which is used during burial ceremonies.
Les awamoris de Sakimoto Shuzo
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Hiroshima Prefecture, Japan
At the origin of this very original project is Chugoku Jozo, a traditionnal shochu distillery, in the region of Hiroshima, town of Sakurao and Hatsukaichi more precisely. In the idea to step in the production of western traditionnal distillates, they create a new artisanal distillery in 2018. A new unit, but one that is fortunate enough to draw on a century-old history of expertise and mastery of distillation techniques. Enough to make beautiful things.
Sakurao Distillery products
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Yamanashi Prefecture, Japan
Sasaichi Shuzo brewery is located in Otsuki-shi, in the heart of Yamanashi Prefecture. It was founded in 1661 under the name Hanadaya and renamed Sasaichi Shuzo in 1919. Like most of Kuras, it was modernized very quickly during the 20th century with the integration of numerous equipments designed to facilitate the sake making process, and then moved irrevocably towards mass production..
However, very recently, in 2013, and under the impetus of the young generation, all this equipment was discarded in favor of a more qualitative and humane production approach. The transition is made through the implementation of equipment designed not to automate production, but to take better care ingredients preparation (example among others, the use of the latest generation of rice washing machines, capable of producing "dry steam"). The emphasis is on the preparation of koji, and on each step of the sake making process, which is done manually.
about ingredients, Sasaichi Shuzo uses underground water from Mount Fuji, the brewery having its own spring called Gozensui. Similarly, rice strains are ultra-quality with the use of locally grown Yamadanishiki, Omachi and Yumesansui.
The return to artisanal production methods was a real surprise and Sasaichi Shuzo is on the way to become one of the greatest successes in the sake world. No one imagined such a return to quality, but it was without counting on the talent of the young Toji Masakazu Ito, trained in the greatest kuras of the country and very much involved in his mission.
Dan means "beginning", like a resurrection for this brewery. A very interesting approach because when creating new products, the toji thinks above all about associations with food! Thus, all Sasaichi Shuzo's sake is more about typicity than expressiveness, the fruity accents being very reasonable. In short, the ideal qualities to pleasantly accompany a meal.
Sasaichi Shuzo sakes
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Saga Prefecture, Japon
The Setou Shuzo Brewery was founded under the name Maruhei Masamune in 1789 by Tajibei Setou. He set up his factory in Shiotacho, Saga Prefecture. In 1920, one of their sake became very well known in the region, Azumacho sake, named after the Japanese Prime Minister at the time, Mr. Takashi Hara! In 1929, Azumacho became the official sake supplier for the Imperial House of Showa Emperor.
Setou Shuzo's sake is ultra-clean and above all very rich, with a Kasubuaï, the percentage of Kasu remaining after filtration, really high. An argument that the brewery does not miss to put forward.
Setou Shuzo sakes
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Ibaraki Prefecture, Japan
Shiragiku Shuzo brewery is located in the Ibaraki Prefecture, in the great Kanto plain where rice cultivation is installed for centuries. Mr. Takahashi, the toji in charge of production, is a real character because he produces sake since the 50s! Indeed he began at the age of 17, and has a great experience coming from what he learned in the strict school of Nambutoji. Coming from a time when all the production steps were still manual, he evolved together with the recent modernization of sake making process, putting lots of efforts on respecting what he learned from the traditional methods. Thus, Shiragiku sake have a strong regional footprint because the brewery has always been carefull to answer their local customers expectations, but as the quality is there, Shiragiku sakes are now distributed throughout Japan.
Shiragiku Shuzo sakes
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Tokyo Prefecture, Japan
The Shotoku atelier is established in the heart of Tokyo, in the Sumida district, near Asakusa, a traditional district where many small family factories have been established from the Edo period. Founded in 1922, the Shotoku atelier's primary purpose was to make hand-blown light bulbs, a technique, almost an art, mastered here to perfection. But as time went by, with the industrialization of the processes, it was quickly necessary to find a way of reconversion and it was in the service glass that the company oriented itself. Thus, during the 20th century, the Shotuku company produced tens of thousands of glasses of such finesse and elegance that they gradually imposed themselves as true references. They entered the greatest restaurants in Tokyo, then in Japan, to serve sake, instead of the traditional chokos or sakazuki.
The Usuhari series began to be developed in 1989. Always very contemporary, it corresponds to the ultimate for the tasting of top-of-the-range sake, Ginjo and Daïginjo. Its shape has been studied with the greatest care, the curves and the tip at the bottom have been designed to make sake tasting an extraordinary experience.
(Each glass or set is delivered in a wooden box).
Yamagata Prefecture, Japan
The Shuho Shuzojo Brewery is located in the heart of Yamagata Prefecture, north of Honshu, a mountainous region with cold and very snowy in winters, ideal conditions for sake production. The area is also known as "Ginjo Okoku", the Ginjo Empire, because the variety of Ginjo sakes produced here is far superior to anything else in Japan.
In Yamagata, each brewery has its own style, an incredible diversity which has a double origin - on the one hand, the geography of the place: each mountainside or hillside on which the breweries are installed has its own microclimate and its own spring water - on the other hand, the human factor: the Tojis of Yamagata are very independent because they have no direct link with the classical guilds of neighboring Prefectures. As for the Kurabitos, the vast majority of them are natives of Yamagata. Enough to forge a strong identity for the sake of the region!
Shuho Shuzojo was founded in Meiji 23 (1890), at the foot of the famous Zaô mountain range, in the North East of the Prefecture. This family brewery produces almost exclusively Ginjo class sake, with an average of 46% semibuaï in all its vintages, an exceptionally high figure. The brewery is very much focused on respecting traditional techniques and product quality, and is the rising star of the Prefecture thanks to the talents of the new generation..
Shuho Shuzojo sakes
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Ishikawa Prefecture, Japan
Sogen Brewery is located at the northern tip of the Noto Peninsula, north of Ishikawa Prefecture on the west coast of Japan. Founded in 1768, it is the oldest brewery in the region. Sogen Shuzo is believed to be the birthplace of the Noto Toji Guild, one of the four major production streams in the country, reputed to be the source of sake with a powerful style and exuberant flavors.
The production is ensured by Yukio Sakaguchi, a leading figure in the world of toji, recognized throughout the country as a true "sake master". His personality, his expertise and the many awards he has accumulated over the years make him a source of pride for the region. He continues to bring the Noto Ryu to life with the most beautiful energy, towards the young Tojis, but also by bringing his own variations of style to it on a daily basis.
Hereafter, all the references of Sogen available on our online store.
Suehiro Shuzo was founded in 1850 in Aizu, at the foot of Mount Bandaï, west of Fukushima Prefecture. The brewery grew in importance during the Meiji era, until the point of becoming the official supplier to His Majesty the Emperor of Japan. But another defining element of the time will definitely make the brewery a benchmark in the sake world.
At the begining of Taisho era, in the 1910s, Kinichiro Kagi, a prominent researcher from the Institute for the Study of Fermentation Processes, stayed at the brewery with the idea of developing a new method of production. For the first time, “Kagi Shiki” was used, a technique which lays the foundations of the Yamahai method. It marked the end of the exhausting "batonnage work" practiced until then, and especially the invention of the Yamahaï method (short for yama orishi haïshi = the end of batonnage), a revolution for brewers. The fermentation conditions are such that they allow the concentration of lactic acid to increase naturally, without resorting to mechanical movements. One hundred years later, the seventh generation of producers continues to perpetuate this method through Yamahaï sakes of remarkable quality.
Suheiro Jozo sakes
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Hokkaido Prefecture, Japan
Founded in 1899 under the name of Kojimayama, Takasago Shuzo modernized itself quite quickly since the construction of the new factory in 1929. It is made of reinforced concrete, at the time when all others were made of wood. This building is still in use today. It uses for the production a local rice, cultivated only in hokkaido. The water comes from the Daisetsuyama mountain range surrounding Asahikawa city.
Takasago Shuzo sakes
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Shiga Prefecture, Japan
It is in the prefecture of Shiga, inland, that Takeuchi Shuzo brewery is installed. This region, which was called Omi, is surrounded by mountains and bordered by Lake Biwako. It used to be a very important commercial area because it is located at a key point of the river, between Kyoto, the ancient capital, and Osaka, business city. At all times, travelers stopped there for a restn and of course, use to drink sake, contributing to the reputation of the region. Good quality rice, a very pure spring water, and an ideal climate for sake brewing did the rest. Takeuchi Shuzo is a very small unit, run by the 7th generation of owners. For 140 years, they get the best of this ideal environment to produce excellent Daïginjo. We have here two representatives.
Takeuchi Shuzo sakes
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Nada Prefecture, Japon
Tatsuma Honke Brewery has a long and rich history. It started its activity in 1662 from the discovery of a very pure water in the Nada area, close to Kobe. This area has become over time, one of the most important for the production of sake, and experienced a real golden age during the Edo period. Tatsuma Honke had a very interesting development from that time, diversifying its activities beyond the simple production of sake in transportation, barrels manufacturing, etc ... If the brewery Tatsuma Honke had to overcome many difficulties history recent (destruction from WWII and total loss of production units during the Kobe earthquake, in 1995), it has continued to renew itself while maintaining its traditional methods of production. In a few decades, it has become a major in the world of sake.
Tatsuuma Honke sakes
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Tochigi Prefecture, Japan
The Tentaka brewery is located in the heart of Tochigi Prefecture in the city of Otawara. A region where nature is rich and climate pleasant, sunny, with mild temperatures in summer and cool in winter. The surroundings, between the Nakagawa River and Tokugawa River, are fertile. Rice farming has always been carried out here. Water is abundant and pure, available from the Nasudake spring in the northern part of the Prefecture. The conditions for producing quality sake are therefore largely favourable, and Tentaka Brewery uses them in a rather original production approach.
Within this ideal environment, the brewery combines a very strict approach to raw material quality using organically grown rice with a strong commitment to promoting automation and computerization of its production processes by introducing the most advanced equipment. This is a necessity in Japan, where the working population is tending to shrink, but it is also a desire from Tentaka to enable its employees to work safely, while maintaining a high level of quality. A rare thing at the moment is that the brewery produces its own rice, combining tradition and modernity.
Tentaka Shuzo sakes
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Tochigi Prefecture, Japan
Tonoike Shuzoten was created by a family from a group of workers coming from the remote locality of Shiga, the "Oomi Shonin". Their appearance goes back to 1590, date on which Hideyoshi Toyotomi sends a Daïmyo of the name of Ujisato Gamo since Oomi, towards Fukushima. He is accompanied by many artists, men of science, shokunin, and merchants. The mission entrusted to them by Hideyoshi Toyotomi is to make the West of Japan more active by creating commercial links with the East. Over time, some of the members of this group established residence in Tochigi and began to make sake. Thus, a new style was born in the region, based on the techniques of Oomi savants and surrounded by secrets known only by merchants. The Tonoike family, from this group of Oomi Shonin, founded the original Tonoike Sogoro Shoten kura. But Itsugoro Tonoike directed it only in his youth, with his brother, because he decided in 1937 to settle in the nearby town of Mashikoe to brew alone, within his own unit, Tonoike Shuzoten.
Tonoike Shuzo sakes
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Okayama Prefecture, Japan
Founded in 1868, Toshimori Shuzo is located in Akaiwa City, Okayama Prefecture, Chugoku Region. The brewery is of course specialized in processing Omachi rice which, in the sake world, is the symbol of Okayama Prefecture (95% of Japanese Omachi being grown in the locality). But it is an ancient strain of Omachi that is used, originating from Karube locality, a highly prized subspecies that was rediscovered by Toshimori Shuzo after it completely disappeared in the 1930s. A long and tedious work initiated in 1960, without using pesticides or chemical fertilizers, which leads today to the use of this particular rice that is the Akaïwa Omachi.
This almost primitive rice is brewed according to a method that is no less primitive and which involves the use of large earthenware jars called "kame" or "bizenyaki oomika". This technique has not been used since the 15th century, and only the Toshimori Shuzo Brewery is reviving it with the idea of producing sake in a unique style.
Toshimori Shuzo sakes
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Yamanashi Prefecture, Japan
Yamanashi Meijo's brewery is located at the foot of the Japanese Alps, north of Yamanashi Prefecture on the island of Honshu. It was founded in 1750 by the descendant of a long line of brewers who were originally settled in the Nagano area. Mr. Kitahara, then the seventh generation of the family, discovered water of exceptional quality in the heart of the Hakushu locality. He decided to move there to establish his own brewery. This pure water comes from the melting snows of Mount Kai Komagatake, whose summit is over 2900m high. It feeds the region's springs after being slowly filtered through the granite rock, thus taking up minerals that are essential for the production of sake.
The recognition was immediate and the good reputation of Yamanashi Meijo went beyond the limits of the locality to the point of becoming a place of visit for the Emperor Meiji who stayed there during his official visits. Since then, the majestic family home has been elevated to the rank of place of historical interest in Japan. Today, sake making is still a family affair, and the 12th generation still takes care of the details, including long, low-temperature fermentations to preserve the signature Yamanashi Meijo sake: sake that is both delicate and rich, with the remarkable quality of the spring water preserved intact.
Yamanashi Meijo sakes
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Saga Prefecture, Japan
More than 200 years of history and tradition passed within Yano Shuzo and here is the young 8th generation. It perpetuates a remarkable work based on the search for innovative flavors and the continuous improvement of sake quality. A challenge taken up each year by the creation of products such as Kuragokoro Junmaï Ginjo and Tokubetsu Junmaï.
Yano Shuzo sakes
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Ishikawa Prefecture, Japan
Facing the Sea of Japan, Ishikawa Prefecture is a rice-growing region that has very good water quality and a very harsh climate with lots of snow in winter. Agriculture is very important and historically, rice farmers in the summer used to brew sake in the winter. Located in the small village of Yamajima, known throughout Japan for the quality of its sake, the Yoshida Shuzo Brewery has a very interesting and rare feature: two toji (equivalent to cellar masters) work there full time. One is old and the other younger. They 'inspire each other to develop ever more qualitative products.
Yoshida Shuzo sakes
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