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My investigative efforts are finally paying off!
I visited the Shizuoka Sake Brewers Association Office in Shizuoka City for the 4th time yesterday.
I tried a new strategy: instead of asking for the « man-in-charge », I talked to the two ladies working as secretaries, who by now knew me enough to feel comfortable talking with me.
Mrs. Ukai and Shimizu readily answered my questions, forcing the gentleman (I still can’t remember his name, blimey!) in coming out of his comfortable lair to join in. He had at last recognized I was being serious.
And as if some magic had operated, I was offered copies of « meibo » (name lists) of all the sake breweries, and shochu distilleries which was a real bonus, from 1953! Banzai!
These were the good news. I certainly will have to decipher the whole information, although the three employees competed with each other to help recognize the pronunciation of some very obscure names and brands.
Now the bad news:
I found out that 3 of the existing 32 member breweries were not brewing their own sake, but instead having it done by other breweries to be sold under their own label. To think that « oke gai » had been finally eradicated! The « Brewery » names are: Matsuwaka, Takamatsu and Chiyo No Musume. I will not bother to « visit » them, but I will try to buy their brand for my scrapbook collection and some of little retribution of my own. Call me passionate, I don’t give it a fig!
The other bad news were only a confirmation. One of the « big names » Doi Brewery (Kaiun) was still selling some of their sake to a Nada Brewery. Their owner, Mr, Doi, is nothing less but the present Chairman of the Shizuoka Prefecture Sake Breweries Association!
I will keep that information in my pocket when I visit their Kura!