Tag Archives: Local Products

Weird Japan (11): Acid Milk!

A few years ago we used to see those big ads in Japan for “Homo Milk” standing for “Homogeneous Milk”. That is, until someone pointed out this might mislead some people into the wrong conclusions…

I found this truck in front of a kindergarten this morning on the way to my classroom.
After some investigation I found out (with the help of my Japanese student), that yoghurt is also called fermented milk in Japanese!
Acid Milk simply stands for Yoghurt!
Even so, it might be a good idea (but I suppose it is too late!) to think of a change of name, unless some people (again!) think of an even worse possibility! LOL

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

Pierre.Cuisine, Francescannotwrite, My White Kitchen, 47 Japanese Farms Through The Eyes of Its Rural Communities, Foodhoe, Chucks Eats, Things that Fizz & Stuff, Five Euro Food by Charles,Red Shallot Kitchen by Priscilla,With a Glass, Nami | Just One Cookbook, Peach Farm Studio, Clumsyfingers by Xethia, PepperBento,Adventures in Bento Making, American Bent, Beanbento, Bento No, Bento Wo Tsukurimashou, Cooking Cute, Eula, Hapabento , Happy Bento, Jacki’s Bento Blog, Kitchen Cow, Leggo My Obento, Le Petit Journal Bento & CO (French), Lunch In A Box,
Susan at Arkonlite, Vegan Lunch Box; Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento, The Herbed Kitchen, J-Mama’s Kitchen, Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Bento Lunch Blog (German), Adventures In Bento, Anna The Red’s Bento Factory, Cooking Cute, Timeless Gourmet, Bento Bug, Ideal Meal, Bentosaurus, Mr. Foodie (London/UK), Ohayo Bento,

Must-see tasting websites:

-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

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Shizuoka Sake Tasting: Hana No Mai Brewery-Junmai Shiboritate Genshu

Hana no Mai Brewery in Hamamatsu City ‘ the largest Sake Brewery in Shizuoka Prefecture and export a sizeabkle amount abroad.
For quit some time they have been breweing their sake with their own ingredients. They grow their own Yamada Nishiki rice in the same city, uses Shizuoka yeats and the local water!

They produce also many limited brews such this nicely warpped “shiboritate/newly pressed” Junmai (no alcohol added) Genshu (no water added!

Rice: Shizuoka-grown Yamada Nishiki
Rice milled down to 60%
Dryness: +3
Acidity: 1.8
Alcohol: 16~17 degrees
Bottled in October 2010

Clarity: Very clear
Color: Very faint golden hue
Aroma: Fruity and asserive. banana, pineapple, custard
Body: Fluid
Taste: Strong fruity alcohol attack.
Warms back of the palate.
Dryish and strong junmai petillant.
Lingers for a short while with lots of almonds and coffee beans. Oranges, Macadamia nuts, hints of dark chocolate.
Drinks well with food with more Macadamia nuts.

Overall: Unusually strong sake for Hana No Mai Brewery.
Straightforward and fruity.
Tends to vary with food.
Best appreciated with strong taste food, although the latter might influence the taste.
A good sake for Izakayas!

Must-see tasting websites:
-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery
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Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

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Shizuoka Sake Tasting: Fuji-Takasago Brewery-Tokubetsu Junmai Diamond Fuji

Although the Fuji-Takasago Brewery in Fujinomiya City is part of a larger conglomerate, all the staff is from Shizuoka Prefecture and the sake there are made exclusively according to methods prevalent in the Prefecture.

Moreover, they are active in promoting sake rice grown in Shizuoka Prefecture.
In this particular case half of the rice used for this brew is Homare Fuji, a Yamada Nishii hybrid developed in Shizuoka Prefecture.

Rice: Yamada Nishiki and Shizuoka-grownHomare Fuji
Rice milled down to 60%
Dyness: +6
Alcohol: 15~16 degrees
Bottlled in November 2010

Clarity: Very clear
Color: Transparent
Aroma: Fruity: pineapple, custard. almonds
Body: Fluid
Taste: Very dry attack backed up by Junmai petillant.
Fruity: dry almonds, custard.
Quickly disappears with a soft custard note.
Very soft and easy to drink in spite of its softness.
Turns dry with food.
Goes very well with fish and sashimi.
As nurukan/lukewarm: Turns sweeter with a short strong junmai pang with a quick comeback on the drier side.
Oranges and custard.
very pleasant as a warm sake.

Overall: Very pleasant and easy to drink sake.
Goes well with any food, raw or cooked.
A sake to please everyone!
A great sake for a great party!

Must-see tasting websites:
-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery
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Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

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日本語のブログ
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Shizuoka Sake Tasting: Shidaizumi Brewery/Organic Sake-Junmai Ginjo

Shidaizumi Brewery in Fujieda City has been conducting some very interesting experiments with organic ake rice for some time.
With Aoshima Brewery in the same city, a new movement has been started for a new and growing trend: Organic sake.

Shidaizumi Brewery hence received the Ecofarmer License from the Shizuoka Prefectureas a member of the JA Oigawa Yaizu Sake Rice Research Committee.

The Brewery used organic rice of the Yamada Nishiki strain cultivated by 11 farmers in Yaizu City:
Kohji Ohata, Toshiyuki Umehara, Masamitsu Masuda, Tatsuo Muramatsu, Teruo Matsumura, Toshiyuki Sone, Hirao Noda, Masashi Suzuki, Naomi Yamamoto, Riji Yagi and Kazuyuki Ishikawa.

Rice: Organic Yamada Nishiki all grown in Shizuoka Prefecture
Rice milled to: 55%
Yeast: NEW-5 (Shizuoka)
Dryness: +5.0
Acidity: 1.2
Alcohol: 15~16 degrees
Bottled in December 2010

Clarity: Very clear
Color: Transparent
Aroma: Bananas
Body: Fluid
Taste: Dry attack with junmai petillant.
Soft but complex.
Warms up back of the palate and ends on a dry note.
Banana, almond, apricot, memories of coffee beans and dark chocolate.
Dry melon appears with food with more nuts and dark chocolate.
Elegant, easy to drink.

Overall: Ever talked of a “feminine drink”?
A sake not easy to discern.
Ladies would be screaming for it?

Must-see tasting websites:
-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery
——————————–
Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

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日本語のブログ
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Suruga Brewery: The Newest Brewery In Shizuoka Prefecture!


Takahiro Nagashima/長島隆弘 of Nagashima Sake Shop and Daigo Hagiwara/萩原大吾 of Suruga Brewery

I finally found the occasion to pay a long delayed visit to the newest Sake Brewery In Shizuoka Prefecture (and probably in Japan!): Suruga Brewery/駿河酒造!


Tenkou/天虹/”Heaven’s Rainbow”, Suruga Brewery’s representative brand!

My good friend Takahiro Nagashima of Saketen was on hand as he had wanted to visit and deal with Suruga Brewery the very moment they arrived in Shizuoka City!


Delivery truck formerly owned by Yoshiya Brewery.

Suruga Brewery may have a short history but it has been a pretty eventful one!


Haginishiki Brewery of old times!

It all started in 2006 when some members of the family owning the Haginishiki Brewery in Shizuoka City decided to separate themselves form the old brewery to create the new one.


Chumasa sake casks from the defunct Yoshiya Brewery

So they first moved to Kakegawa City where they started brewing their own brands at the former Sogatsuru Brewery which had laid dormant for 10 years.


Hagi No Kura Brand flag

They produced brands such as Hagi nO kura, Sogatsuru and Sogatsuru-Hagi No Kura. Sogatsuru-Hagi No Kura was the official name of the “new” brewery then.


Equipment from the defunct Yoshiya Brewery

One cannot start a new sake brewery with a new license in Japan.
The only way you produce your own brand of sake is either to obtain the collaboration of another brewery or to buy the license of a brewery.


More equipment from the defunct Yoshiya Brewery

They brewed their sake under the name of Sogatsuru-Hagi No Kura Brewery until 2009.
Then in 2010, Yoshiya Brewery in Shizuoka City decided to stop their activities.


Press from Yoshiya Brewery

They then were able to buy Yoshiya Brewery’s license and call themselves Suruga Brewery.
Not only did they buy the license but also all the unsold sake and equipment from Yoshiya Brewery!


Tanks from Yoshiya Brewery

Sake brewery equipment is hard to make and obtain, and terribly expensive, so buying a defunct brewery’s equipment is quite common in Japan.


Another view from the outside

But they moved to their present address in Shizuoka City only last year.


Chumasa brand

I was personally extremely happy to learn and verify that they kept the names Yoshiya Brewery’s sake brands, Chumasa, Onigoroshi and Abekaido in their own range of labels headed by their representative brand name, Tenkou.


Entrance to the koji muro/麹室

Now, the family branch who decided to go alone also possessed land and a supermarket in Nishiwaki, Suruga Ku (hence the new name of the brewery) in Shizuoka City.
They just transformed the supermarket into a very efficient, cost-saving brewery!


Inside the koji muro

They had their own well dug 50 meters deep into the Abe River subterranean bed. This water is top-class for sake even that deep inside a city!


Modern temperature regulator

The brewmaster/杜氏 at Suruga Brewery is Mr. Kazumo Kobayashi/小林一雲 (39) of NaganoPrefecture and of the Nanbu Brewmasters School who brew the sake with his team of three “kurabito/helpers”.


New tanks/oke/桶

The present yearly production is of 350 goku/石/about 63,000 liters.


Having a peak at premium sake ready to be pressed!

The shikomi/actual brewing is done in two stages, in November~December, and then again in March~April.


Modern tanks where fermenting is being conducted

Apart of the brewing personnel who reside in the brewery only during the brewing, Suruga Brewery, Daigo Hagiwara, who represents the 3rd generation, employs 4 full staff and 2 part-timers.


It’s brewing!


One cannot escape the manual work, however modern a brewery might be!


They still keep reminding themselves of their new name!


The Abekaido Brand!


Mr. Hirai, the accountant and jack of all trades!


A treasure trove of old and very old sake!


Their best and most expensive sake!

Don’t worry, I’ll start tasting reports soon!

Suruga Brewery
422-8044 Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Suruga Ku, Nishiwaki, 923
Tel.: 054-281-1331
Fax: 054-251-1475

Must-see tasting websites:
-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery
——————————–
Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

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日本語のブログ
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Shizuoka Sake Tasting: Morimoto Brewery-Sayogoromo Tokubetsu Junmai Homare Fuji

The great thing about Morimoto Brewery is the unpredictability of its sake!
All are worth tasting again and again every year as they show different characters and idyosincrasies.

This sake made with Shizuoka-grown Homare Fuji sake rice is another proof of their originality!

Morimoto Brewery: Sayogoromo Tokubetsu Junmai Homare
Fuji

Rice: Homare Fuji (Shizuoka-grown)
Rice milled down to 60%
Alcohol: 15~16 degrees
Bottled in October 2010

Clarity: very clear
Color: transparent
Aroma: Fruity, alcohol, custard, macadamia nuts. Sweetish and pleasurable
Taste: Very dry attack backed with a little pleasant alcohol and junmai petillant.
Fruity: custard, almond nuts, greens.
Disappears quickly with notes of coffee beans and dry almonds.
Sharpish, straightforward. Devised to accompany and complement food.
Changes little with food, turns only a little drier.

Overall: A very good sake for food, especially winter heavy food.
Contribute a dry note to balance heavy food.
A fine sake on its own, too!

Must-see tasting websites:
-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery
——————————–
Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

—————————————-
日本語のブログ
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Shizuoka Sake Tasting: Yamanaka Brewery-Aoitenka Junmai Hyakumangoku Rice

Yamanaka Brewery is a small, ancient and traditional brewery lost a long way south of Kakegawa Station and it is not easy to find their brews even in Shizuoka City. Luckily enough I happened to find this sake made with Hyakumangoku rice grown in Shizuoka Prefecture!

Rice: Hyakumangoku (Shizuoka-grown)
Milled down to: 65%
Dryness: +2.0
Acidity: 1.4
Yeast: Association No 1001
Alcohol: 15~16 degrees
Bottled in June 2010

Clarity: very clear
Color: transparent
Aroma: fruity, light, banana, chocolate, vanilla, hints of pineapple
Body: fluid
Taste: Dry soft attack with junmai petillant.
Complex and fruity: chocolate, coffee beans, banana.
Quickly disappears with notes of almonds.
Gets drier with food.
Easy to drink.

Overall: A sake for all seasons.
Very fruity, dry and soft.
Actually quite complex and showing more facets than expected.
A sure value!

Must-see tasting websites:
-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery
——————————–
Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

—————————————-
日本語のブログ
—————————————-