“Yamada Nishiki Junmai Daiginjo Sake from Banshu” 720ml 3,500 yen (excluding tax)


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With pride in sake brewing. Sake and brewery selection recognized by the world


7. The reason why Hiroyuki Karahashi, the fourth generation of Homare Sake Brewery, is crying tears of joy at the sake adopted by the Ise-Shima Summit

“Yamada Nishiki Junmai Daiginjo Sake from Banshu” 720ml 3,500 yen (excluding tax)

Fukushima Prefecture is one of Japan's leading producers of sake. There are apparently more than 60 sake breweries in the prefecture, half of which are in the Aizu region. The area is rich in nature, has high-quality water and rice, and has a lot of snow, all of which are favorable conditions for sake brewing. Snowfall can also be expected to remove dirt and dust, preventing the growth of bacteria during brewing. Homare Sake Brewery, the brewer of ``Aizu Homare,'' is located in an area that has the perfect conditions for producing sake.

The founding family, the Karahashi family, was originally established in Kitakata City, Fukushima Prefecture in 1918, aiming to expand from being a rice wholesaler to a miso and koji manufacturer to a sake brewer. The business gradually expanded, and after the war, in 24, it became Homare Sake Brewery Co., Ltd. The representative brand ``Aizu Homare'' was named to spread the name of Aizu throughout Japan. Hiragana names such as ``Homare'' were apparently rare even at the time. Homare Sake Brewery, which is currently in its fourth generation under Hiroyuki Karahashi, is the third youngest sake brewery in Kitakata, but its insatiable inquisitive spirit when it comes to sake brewing is reliable.

“Junmai Ginjo Karahashi Yamada Nishiki” 720ml 1500 yen (excluding tax) “Junmai Ginjo Karahashi Yamada Nishiki” 720ml 1500 yen (excluding tax)

“Junmai Ginjo Karahashi Yamada Nishiki” 720ml 1500 yen (excluding tax)

The water used for Aizu Homare is underground water from Mt. Iide, which rises at the northern tip of Kitakata. The water is extremely soft, gentle on the palate, and rich in sweetness, and has been selected as one of the top 100 famous waters of the Heisei era. The sake rice is mainly locally produced, such as Yume no Ka, Gohyakumangoku, and Hanafubuki, as well as Yamada Nishiki from Hyogo Prefecture and Omachi from Okayama Prefecture.The characteristics of each sake rice and what kind of sake are you aiming for? Use depending on. Aizu Homare's sake brewing is not only about water and rice. It is only by combining the skills and sensibilities cultivated over many years of sake brewing with an objective approach using the latest technology that it is perfected. We also pay particular attention to reproducibility. ``You can only say that you've made it when it's finished exactly as you envisioned it. You can continue to repeat it and improve the quality,'' says Karahashi. The road to achieving the ideal sake you envision is long and arduous.


We cannot forget what happened at the Wynn Palace casino in Macau in 2018. It was a big event where past champions of the Sake category of the world's largest wine competition, IWC (International Wine Challenge), were invited, a large-scale tasting event was held, and a salmon dinner was prepared with a special menu prepared by the executive chef. As the brewer of the 2015 champion salmon, Miyuki Karahashi, the fourth generation wife of Homare Sake Brewery's president and director, gave a speech. "After the earthquake, my husband focused on safety and security, but that alone was not enough to get the market to accept it. He said we had to make absolutely delicious sake. And last year, when we presented the Champion Salmon Award in London, It was the first time I had ever seen my husband cry."


As you know, after the Great East Japan Earthquake in 2011, Aizu, Fukushima Prefecture, came under scrutiny. I thought of Karahashi's suicide as he cried. This seemed to be the most positive message from post-earthquake Japan that the sake brewery had achieved by dedicating itself to sake brewing. And more joy awaited. The 2015 IWC Champion award-winning sake ``Aizu Homare Banshu Yamada Nishikomi Junmai Daiginjo Sake'' was selected as a souvenir for the leaders of various countries at the 2016 Ise-Shima Summit. I would like to remember the brewers who worked with Karahashi, the people of Fukushima Prefecture, and the people who lit a light in my heart and encouraged me.


(Talk by Yoshie Hiraide)

Hiroyuki Karahashi the fifth generation Hiroyuki Karahashi the fifth generation

Hiroyuki Karahashi, the fourth generation owner, is also active in sake tourism. "Unrei-an" adjacent to the storehouse is a vast Japanese garden of 1300 tsubo. You can sample more than 10 types of sake while looking out at the garden. Brewery tours are always available, and guided tours are also available (please confirm).

Yoshie Hiraide Select “Aizu Homare” 2 Recommended Bottles

Banshu Yamada Nishiki Junmai Daiginjo sake
It has a gorgeous, fresh scent reminiscent of fruit. "It's clean and dry, but it's also refreshing, with an elegant sweetness, and a sharp taste."
Type: Junmai Daiginjo sake
Raw material rice: Yamada Nishiki from Banshu
Rice polishing rate: 39%
Sake level: +1
720ml 3,500 yen (excluding tax)


Junmai Ginjo Karahashi Yamada Nishiki
It is characterized by thorough quality control, including pasteurization in bottles and refrigerated storage at -5℃ until just before shipping. "It has a scent reminiscent of tropical fruits, and a richness and freshness that coexists. It also has a nice sharp taste, so why not pair it with Chinese food?"
Type: Junmai Ginjo sake
Raw material rice: Yamada Nishiki from Hyogo
Rice polishing rate: 60%
Sake level: +1
720ml 1,500 yen (excluding tax)

◆Aizu Homare Homare Sake Brewery Co., Ltd.
2706 Tokiwacho, Muramatsu, Matsuyamacho, Kitakata City, Fukushima Prefecture

Toshie Hiraide

Born in 1962. Representative director of Corpo Kou Co., Ltd., which aims to internationalize sake and attract inbound tourists to regional areas. He is the sake samurai coordinator. IWC Ambassador. Shoryudo Ambassador (Inbound Ambassador for XNUMX prefectures in Chubu and Hokuriku)


Premium X   With pride in sake brewing. Sake and brewery selection recognized by the world

``Sake Samurai'' was started in 2006 by the Japan Sake Brewery Youth Council, a national organization of young brewers, in order to restore the pride of sake and spread the culture of sake not only within Japan but also to the world. Sake Samurai Coordinator Yoshie Hiraide, who is working to realize the dream of turning Sake into a tourism-based nation, will introduce unique sake breweries that Japanese sake lovers should visit at least once, and the sake they want to taste there.



(Titles omitted)

Photography by Haruko Amagata


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