Youji's Sake Notes 1-4
It was the forth sake I tried among Tippsy Sake’s second Seasonal Box of 6 bottles. Tamanohikari Brewery is popular not to waver to make “Sanzo-shu” that has many other ingredients such as glucose etc. than sake rice, koji, water and pure alcohol, to survive through the Second World War. Also they have used indigenous Omachi rice (Bizen Omachi) and the local soft water (Fushimizu) for their 350 year history to make sake elegant and well-rounded.
Heirloom Strain Matters?
Omachi is an heirloom rice, that is ancestor of famous Yamadanishiki rice for ginjo sake. It typically brings white flower and anise flavor to the liquid, but Bizen Omachi gives us more layers and depth on the palate. The rice is relatively large and round. “Shinpaku”, center of rice is also large, absorbing water well to make a good “moromi”. However, it needs special attentions to grow the strain all the time. Some failure was expected on many occasions. I cannot imagine more how they have overcome the issue instead of switching to Yamadanishiki that would promise a great ginjo and daiginjo sake.
I love Omachi sake. It may be a little quieter than Yamadanishiki, but I can taste more unique character. With this Tamanohikari Daiginjo, I find Pernod and Pastis on my nose. Try it with whisky glass in the picture to get your nose focused. On palate, please see Temperature and Pairing section below. I feel the toji, sake master Mr. Shirozaki, and his staff not only working hard but also standing by the heirloom strain to bring maximum potential the entire time. Like Omachi, shining spheres “Tamanohikari”, their passion and persistency in production with the heirloom rice matters.
According to Tippsy Sake, it is enjoyable at cold and room temperature (40 – 70F). I feel pleasant powder texture on my back tongue around 40F, and well-rounded flavor around 70F. Let me know what you can taste!
Traditional style nigiri sushi with white fish, lemon and salt. I tried with local gray sole “kobujime”. It was gorgeous and perfect pairing of my life.
Would you try it and share your opinion with me? Let’s discuss at “General Discussion” in “Forum” page.