Saito Shuzo - award winning brewery

04 Jul 2018

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The Brewery

Fushimi is one of the famous areas of Japanese sake breweries in Japan. In this small area of 2 square kilometers, there are over 20 sake breweries, and this southern district of Kyoto has become a prominent sake region valued by many sake enthusiasts.

The Saito family founded their business in Fushimi, Kyoto in the late 17th century and while they originally were in the kimono trade, they switched over to sake brewing in 1895. Such decision was made, because with the Meiji era modernization the railway was built through Fushimi and the shop was no longer passed by travelers and pilgrims. Eventually, it proved to be the right decision since Saito Sake Brewing Company has become a well-known producer of high quality sake.

The brewery uses Iwai rice for their premium sake in contrast with other breweries which use mostly Yamada-nishiki rice for premium sake. The brewery values local ingredients for sake making. Their sake is made with the highest quality ingredients from Kyoto prefecture. Fushimi is also distinguished by having access to spring water of exceptional quality. The water produces elegant, not too overly sweet, and soft sake.

Saito Sake Brewing Company is rightly proud of the outstanding quality of its sake. One of their most famous products called Eikun Junmai Daiginjo Ichigin won the Gold Prize at the annual Sake Exhibition for 14 consecutive years. Their sakes have also won in international competitions such as International Sake Challenge, International Wine Challenge, and U.S. National Sake Appraisal. Eikun Junmaidaiginjo Kotosennen is a constant winner in these competitions.

Recommendation

Eikun Junmai Ginjo Kotosennen was named after the city of eternal history Kyoto, and Koto Sennen means ‘ancient city of thousand years’. It is a super clean and fruity sake. It is made from Iwai rice polished to 55%. Sweet and sour fragrance reminiscent of grapefruit, mandarin orange, pineapple and yogurt slowly spreads in the mouth until the very end of the palate.

It is different from Junmai Daiginjo in that it has more pronounced sharpness as it strikes your palate, the aftertaste is refreshing and light. Iwai rice makes this sake more fragrant and gives it a nice mouthfeel.

This sake is best enjoyed chilled. It goes well with seafood, chicken, or Chinese food.

Eikun Junmai Ginjo Kotosennen has been awarded silver in International Sake Challenge competition in 2017 and we can assure you that this sake deserves the award!

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