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Chris’s Corner – The Origins of “Hit Sake”

Chris’s Corner – The Origins of “Hit Sake”

Greetings Sake Fans and Connoisseurs,


Chris here, back at it with another Chris' Corner newsletter column. Big shout out and thank you to True Sake customers Charles Thompson and my Uncle Bob for noticing I was gone from last month's newsletter. Don't worry, everything is fine. Nothing happened to me (that I'm aware of). Everything is good in the Land of Sake.


So good that True Sake is starting to take more risks, and we are not beholden to carrying only the greatest hits. We can carry the unique and fun stuff that may be a little more complex, a little more out there, and quite simply a little more interesting. It's the return of 🎶 Chris' Hit Sake! 🎶 

Tsuchida Kimoto Junmai 90 "Shin" - I had the honor of visiting Tsuchida Shuzo in Gunma back in January of 2023, and it was one of the highlights of my trip. Tsuchida Shuzo has taken 90% milled sake to new heights. Keep in mind that this is 90% of the rice REMAINING. You would think this would be way too funky and big, but on the contrary. You get a really balanced and gentle brew.

Terada Honke Muroka Nama Genshu "Musubi" - I might be the only person on staff that likes this bottle. A 100% unmilled brown rice sake. There is a dramatic difference going from 100% milled to 90% milled. Nowadays, the hyper-milled Daiginjo is getting into the single digits. 100% seimaibuai is absolutely wild. Fans of funky, minimal intervention brews will love this. Sour beer fans will love this. 

Matsunotsukasa Kimoto Junmai Kame Clay Vessel 2022 - Leave it to the mad scientists over at Matsuse Shuzo to take sake brewing to new frontiers. There's not a lot of clay aged sake out there. Clay aging is usually reserved for awamori or shochu. Wine is aged in countries such as Portugal and Georgia. But clay aged sake? Not common. What does the aging in clay actually do? This process usually leads to a softer, richer, and smoother style. This will probably get better as the bottle ages. We rarely do write-ups for this sake when it arrives in the US because we only get 2 cases of this. Usually by the time the review is written, the sake is sold out. If you're looking for a good Kimoto/Yamahai sake, snag this now before it's too late.

Matsunotsukasa Junmai Daiginjo "Tosui" 2022 - Matsuse Shuzo can do absolutely no wrong. Not only are their funky sakes great, but their Daiginjos are fantastic too. We were big fans of their "Blue Label '' that came out a few years ago. When we heard that was no longer being imported, we pivoted to the next Daiginjo Matsuse Shuzo was bringing in. Before we even tasted it, I knew it was going to be good. If you like elegant complexity, this is it! 

Senkin Organic Kimoto Kioke Junmai 2023 - We are huge fans of Senkin. Along with Tsuchida Shuzo, Senkin Shuzo is taking the 90% seimaibuai to new uncharted territories. We all *think* we know how 90% sake *should* taste. Senkin totally fakes us out, and makes an absolutely stunning Kimoto Kioke sake. Kioke sakes are very hard to regulate and control, which makes this even more impressive a brew. Shout out to Master Brewer Yoshi Sako and Den Sake for putting this sake on my radar.

Mimurosugi Kioke Bodaimoto - I saved the most opulent for last! This is a jaw-dropping sake, even for sake somm's in the industry. Wow, just wow. What the heck is going on. Long story short, the Bodaimoto style is an ancient style of sake making that dates back a very long time ago and originates from Nara. Factor in the Kioke wooden vat aspect (remember, this is hard to regulate and control), and you got some serious skills on display. Again, on paper, we *think* we know how this *should* taste, but we have no idea. Soft, silky, smooth, world class. Who else is making sake like this? Not many.

That's my time! Thanks again for reading! 
🎶 Hit Sake Luvr! 🎶 
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