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On March 6th, I was invited for the second time to attend the very private Shizuoka Prefecture Master Brewers Tasting Research Meet (results will be made public on March 13th, but I will be away to New Caledonia for a week! I will publish them when I’m back!). The difference with last year when I was personally invited by Mr. Haruju Nakashima, Master Brewer at Yoshiya Brewery, Shizuoka City, was that I was officially invited this time by the Shizuoka Prefecture Brewers Association. That allowed me to attend their private lunch later in the company of only two other outsiders.
I’m happy to say I’m no longer the « strange gaijin » since quite a few people know me as a real fan/lover of Shizuoka Sake and not some troublesome « critique ».
That certainly helped as I succeeded in making a grand schedule mistake which resulted in me being called by worried friends!
I only had the time to check one of my favourite brewers, namely Takashima Brewery, Numazu City (a bit unfair to the other breweries as I share some « judo history » with Mr. Takashima!), before joining the master brewers at their lunch.
The Meet and Lunch were pretty stiff affairs at the beginning, but the event soon became very enjoyable after a few drinks. I could share some very informal (and pretty confidential) discussions with everyone and even make some grand plans.
For example, Etsuko might be interested to learn than Mr. Tsuchida, Master Brewer at Hana No Mai would be very happy to come to one of our Shizuoka Sake Tastings in Hamamatsu to introduce his Brewery’s nectars!
All in all, a great, if a bit short, moment which will prove very beneficial in my future relations with all the Breweries in Shizuoka Prefecture!