Ashikubo is a typical example of a sake made on order by a kura for a single shop or area for diverse publicity or promotional purposes.
In this case it gave result to a good bargain for sake lovers, although some « details » merit to be elborated.
Ashikubo is a district of Shizuoka City located along the Abe River at the foot of the Southern Alps. It is exclusively sold by Mochizuki Shoten, a small supermarket, and made with water collected in the area. Well, that is what is advertized at the shop. Looking at the company label behind the bottle, Fujinishiki Brewery (Fuji Gun in Eastern Shizuoka Prefecture) says that their sake is made with water collected near Mount Fuji. When I visit Fujinishiki, I will ask a pointed question about the water. There are pesistent rumours that many kura « exploited » water from other regions in Shizuoka Prefecture in the past. Old hands went as far as to confide me that some unscrupulous kura from distant prefectures even bought sake for Shizuoka brewers to upgrade their own… Hearsay? Jealousies? I wonder, knowing that in own country, France, this did happen with wine, especially with my hometown wine (Givry) which was bought by big Bourgogne houses to be sold under « Bourguogne AOC » label until local winegrowers rebelled and promoted their own wines with success.
Ashikubo comes in « karakuchi » (Normal sake), Junmai and junmai ginzou.
Jyunmai ginzou at 1,550 yen for a 720 ml bottle is a true bargain!
First visited in July 2006
Address: Mochizuki Shoten, Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Ashikubo, Kuchigumi, 805-2