July 2013

New Store Arrivals – Summer Nama Flight and Amabuki “Sunflower”

Posted by Beau Timken in 2013, July, New Store Arrivals, Newsletter
Ohyama “Big Mountain” (2013)

True Sake From Yamagata Prefecture. Tokubetsu Junmai Nama
SMV: +3~+4 Acidity: 1.3~1.4

The nose on this “tokubetsu” or “special” Junmai (Tokubetsu usually means a higher than Junmai milling or polishing ratio and in this case 60% which is actually a Ginjo rate) is a fun collection of koji or sweet rice, honey, and ripe honeydew aromas. Ohyama has done it again as fans will love the freshness and new feeling of a more velvety and chewy sake that is bright, fat and smooth. Bigger and softer with juicy hints of red apple, dry pear, and ripe melon on a slippery fluid that drinks great. Nicely balanced this summer nama is as fresh as the season. WORD: Balanced WINE: Soft reds/fat whites BEER: Fresh Ales FOODS: Summer fare, grillin’ fun, fresh and easy cuisine.

 

Dewanoyuki (2013)

From Yamagata Prefecture. Tokubetsu Junmai Nama Genshu.
SMV: -1 Acidity: 1.3

This “undiluted” or “Genshu” sake (typically sake has an alc. content of about 15-16% but Genshu sake is not watered back down to this level and usually has a higher content from 17-19%) has a classic aroma field filled with sugar, melon, sweet rice, cooked plums, and cinnamon elements. Okay folks! This is one of those must try sakes if you are into exploring different brews. Think about a Cinnabon in fluid form. Really! This sake is fat, fleshy and fun and best of all it has a rich cinnamon character to it. Could this be the breakfast sake of champions? You bet as this yeasty, rich and wonderful nama sake is a feeling and flavor mutha! Chewy and with great presence behold a sake that escapes the typical fruity and juicy nama sake paradigm. WORD: Cinnamon WINE: Deep Reds/Burly Whites BEER: Large Belgians FOODS: Anything off the grill, out of the fridge or off the boat – think International spice.

 

Tsukasbotan “Senchu Hassaku Reika” (2013)

From Kochi Prefecture. Junmai Nama.
SMV: +8 Acidity: 1.5

The nose on this “raw” version of Senchu Hassaku (Yes we have this in the store and it is fun to taste the pasteurized version along side the unpasteurized version) is a mild collection of sweet rice, blueberries, macaroon, and white grape aromas. Hello dry nama lovers, this brew is for you! With hints of dried fruits and steamed rice this brew drinks on crisp and tangy side that speaks to its freshness and brightness. Tight and compact look for dried mango, dried berries and hint of grapes that flow on a fluid that is more flavorful in a larger glass. This is no silly fruity nama, rather it is a brew that speaks to the crisp and cool crowd who enjoy a touch of the clear spirits. WORD: Dry WINE: Big reds/Crisp Whites BEER: Crisp Ales FOODS: Grillin’ fare that is salty and savory, PIZZA!, and of course sushi.

 

Amabuki “Sunflower”

True Sake From Saga Prefecture. Junmai Ginjo Nama.
SMV: +10 Acidity: 1.5

This “nama” or “unpasteurized” sake (Typically sake is heated – pasteurized – twice as the preservative mechanism) has an interesting nose filled with base aromas such as brown grass, corn, honey and of course sunflower! Why “Of course” sunflower? Amabuki is a brewery known for using fun and new yeasts made from flowers and fruits, and this particular brew is made from sunflower yeast. Yes indeed! The result is a very intruiging sake that has layers and layers of flavors not typically found in the sake world. Look for starchy corn tones with hints of sweet potato and “of course” sunflower seed elements. Sake is a starch of course! There is also a unique sweet vein that gets lost in a larger vessel, but the soft, smooth and lush fluid does best with a nice chill. WORD: Sunflower WINE: Big reds/Dry whites BEER: Pilsners FOODS: Salty, savory, grilled fare with oils and saltiness.
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