2017 JAPANESE COLLECTION

Amanoto

Akita, JP

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Asamai Shuzo Company was established in 1917. Soukou Kakizaki, the founder of the company, named the brand ‘Amanoto’ inspired by an old poem based on a Japanese myth. ‘Amanoto’ means ‘Heavens Door’ which is symbolized by the Magatama, a stone used for a necklace in the myth, pictured on the label. Amanoto’s brewery is located in Akita in the snowy, northern part of Japan and they are the smallest of Akita’s 47 breweries.

Being such a small producer, everything used in their sake making is truly local. Melted mountain snow creates rivers leading into the Yokote basin known for its fertile land. In the summer, they use the river water for raising rice for sake. Some of the water seeps under the basin and springs out near the brewery at the Biwakansen Spring, in the winter this is used for brewing. That same water that raises the rice in the summer brews the sake in the winter.

Sake from the Akita region typically shows fresh steamed rice character. Since 2011, Amanoto brew only Junmai, a kind of sake that is brewed only with rice and water, with no alcohol adjustment. Amanoto do not filter any of their sake. All rice is raised by members of Hirakamachi Sakamai Kenkyuukai, and planted within 5 kilometres away from the brewery. In total six different types of sake rice are grown. To produce the Amanoto ‘house style’, they favour flavour over fragrance looking for a complex and sophisticated palate.

Amanoto

VOL


NV Junkara Junmai 300ml
NV Junkara Junmai 720ml
NV Junmai Ginjo 300ml
NV Junmai Ginjo 720ml
NV Junmai Ginjo 1800ml
NV Tenkuro Junmai Genshu** 720ml
NV Junmai Daiginjo 35* 720ml

*Gift-Boxed
**Available January 2018

Dewazakura

Yamagata, JP

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The Dewazakura Sake Brewery was established in 1892. It is located in Tendo City, Yamagata Prefecture, a small town of 60,000 residents located 300 kilometres north of Tokyo. Situated in the Yamagata Basin and surrounded by high mountains, Tendo City is hot in summer, often exceeding 30 degrees Celsius, and in winter can receive considerable snowfall, often exceeding one meter in depth. These natural features, including the climate, have made the region a major production centre of rice, fruits and other products. The Nakano’s, the founders of Dewazakura, were originally major landowners in the region. Since its foundation, Dewazakura has been committed to quality, the top priority for the brewery.

Dewazakura have played a significant role in the Yamagata prefecture developing their own rice suited to their region with the local agricultural bureau, and this is known as Dewa Sansan, which they use for a selection of their sake. They have also developed special yeast to suit the climate. Dewazakura are known for their distinctive ‘fragrant’ sake, which can be attributed to their yeast selection as well as their low temperature fermentation techniques. Yamagata prefecture does not have any large sake companies hence all individual sake breweries show their own character but tend to have a fragrant style. Like many producers, Dewazakura also use rice from outside their region, sourcing Yamadanishiki rice from Hyogo. Dewazakura are considered one of the industry leaders in innovation, and were largely responsible for the Ginjo ‘boom’ in Japan in the early 1980’s.

Dewazakura

VOL


NV Saku Sparkling Junmai 250ml
NV Seijo Karakuchi 300ml
NV Seijo Karakuchi 720ml
NV Dewa Sansan Junmai Ginjo 300ml
NV Dewa Sansan Junmai Ginjo 720ml
NV Dewa Sansan Junmai Ginjo 1800ml
NV Omachi Junmai Ginjo* 720ml
NV Yamada Nishiki Daiginjo 48 720ml
NV Ichiro Junmai Daiginjo* 720ml
NV Karesansui Tokubetsu Jun. 10YO* 720ml

*Gift Boxed

Hombo Shuzo

Kagoshima, JP

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Hombo Shuzo was established in 1872, and is located at the southern tip of the Satsuma peninsula in Kagoshima, on the island of Kyushu. They produce ‘Imo’ Shochu from freshly harvested local Kogane Sengan sweet potatoes which grow especially well in the southern Satsuma climate.

This region is also famous for its very pure mineral water, and the Chiran distillery, where these Shochu are produced, is located right in the heart of where this mineral water surfaces and where the sweet potatoes are grown.

Over the past 100 plus years, Hombo Shuzo have developed and refined the way they make Shochu, and have even patented a completely new distillation technique in 2009. In 2013 they were rewarded with their ‘Arawaza’ Sakurajima Shochu winning both the sole Gold Medal in the Shochu category of the International Wine & Spirit Competition (IWSC) in London and the Trophy Medal – the highest acclaim in the genre of the internationally prestigious contest. ‘Arawaza’ literally means ‘new technique’ for producing Shochu with a smooth and crisp taste.

Kuro Koji (black ‘koji’) has historically been used in Shochu making, whereas ki (yellow) koji is used for Sake. This is because black koji is more suitable for warmer climate, as it assists keep out unwanted bacteria by creating citric acid, and shows no volatility during distillation. Hombo Shuzo still use this method (Jitake) to produce ‘Kuro Koji’ Jitake Sakurajima Shochu.

These two Shochu’s are both part of the ‘Sakurajima’ selection, named after Kyushu’s iconic volcanic island located a ten minute boat trip from Kagoshima City

Umeshu

VOL


NV Joto Chiran-Cha Umeshu (10% alc/vol) 720ml
NV Kokutu Umeshu (14% alc/vol) 720ml

Shochu

VOL


NV ‘Arawaza’ Sakurajima Shochu (25% alc/vol)* 720ml
NV ‘Kuro Koji’ Jitake Sakura. Shochu (25% alc/vol)* 720ml
NV Kishogura Tsubo Shochu (25% alc/vol)* 720ml
NV Gensyu Yakusugi Shochu (37% alc/vol)* 720ml

*Gift-Boxed

Houraisen

Aichi, JP

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Sekiya Brewery Co Ltd, producing Sake under the brand name Houraisen, was established in 1864 in the Prefecture of Aichi, about halfway between Tokyo and Osaka. Houraisen have two breweries, one being their ‘Ginjo workshop’ which was established in 2004 where they provide educational training on the production of Ginjo style Sake, and the other, their traditional brewery , where all of the Houraisen Sake’s are made and where they combine their traditional Sake brewing skills with the modern equipment available to them.

Houraisen own about 22 hectares of their own rice paddocks, and grow rice suited to the region. Over the past 10 years Houraisen in collaboration with the local agricultural bureau have developed a strain of rice most suited to their mountainous terrain – Yumesansui. The brewery and water source are located in the mountains at around 500 metres above sea level, so the climate is cool at night.

The water source available to Houraisen is some of the softest water in Japan, and it has no magnesium or calcium which means the Sake they produce is very ‘soft’. Whilst over 150 years old, Houraisen are now considered one of the most modern and innovative Sake producers in Japan. The average polishing rate across all the Sake they produce in 50% (Daiginjo level).

Houraisen

VOL


NV Beshi Tokubetsu Junmai 300ml
NV Beshi Tokubetsu Junmai 720ml
NV Beshi Tokubetsu Junmai 1800ml
NV Kasumizuki Junmai 720ml
NV Wa Junmai Ginjo 720ml
NV Bi Junmai Daiginjo 300ml
NV Bi Junmai Daiginjo 720ml
NV Bi Junmai Daiginjo 1800ml
NV Kuu Junmai Daiginjo* 720ml
NV Kuu Junmai Daiginjo 1800ml
NV Gin Junmai Daiginjo* 720ml
NV Ao Shiso Kaoru Umeshu 720ml
NV Kanjuku Umeshu 720ml

*Gift-Boxed

Katsunuma Jyozo

Yamanashi, JP

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Katsunuma Jyozo Winery was established by the Aruga family in 1937 in the village of Katsunuma, in the Yamanashi prefecture, and they have been cultivating grapes and producing wine for three generations. They own 5 ha of vines, and source from another 25ha in the local region. Over 70% of the grapes they harvest are Koshu, an indigenous Japanese grape variety that has been grown in the region for over 1300 years.

Koshu is a white wine variety, and we have decided at this stage to just focus on importing wines made from this variety. The wines from Katsunuma Jyozo are extremely sought after in Japan, and are considered by many as one of the best producers of the Koshu variety. As a result stock availability is limited, and we were only able to source very small quantities of the 2014 vintage, but hope these allocations will increase going forward.

Katsunuma have created a selection of wines under the names ‘Aruga Branca’ and ‘Arugano’ which focuses on wines produced from Koshu. For ‘Aruga Branca’ the fruit is sourced from the oldest vines in Katsunuma, whereas for the ‘Arugano’, the fruit is sourced from the Isehara vineyard, which is a relatively new region in Yamanashi and still quite limited in production, and Koshu wine from this area shows some different characters on the aroma, and palate.

The 2014 Aruga Branca ‘Clareza’ Koshu is 100% Koshu made using only free run juice, no oak and Sur Lie fermentation, and resting on lees for around 6 months. It represents a very pure expression of unoaked Koshu. On the nose it exhibits apples, some white pepper/cinnamon spice and lemon. It shows a mineral complexity. Firm acid, and moderate weight, with a salty tangy finish.

The 2014 Arugano ‘Bosque’ Koshu is 100% Koshu made using fruit sourced from younger vines on the famous Isehara vineyard. It is aromatic, intense with more tropical characters on the nose, such as passionfruit, and even grapefruit, with lovely complexity. Lovely linear palate, crisp acid and salty finish. Punchy, intense bouquet and linear finish, with wonderful purity and length.

Katsunuma Jyozo

VOL


15 Aruga Branca 'Clareza' Koshu 300ml
14 Arugano 'Bosque' Koshu 300ml

Koshinoiso

Fukui, JP

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Koshinoiso Brewing Company is a brewer that got its start in 1909 in a small village called Koshinoiso, Fukui Prefecture.  The brewery moved to Fukui City in 1959.  Like many craft beer makers in Japan, this brewery began by brewing Japan’s traditional Sake, then it made the natural expansion to beer when Japan’s beer laws were relaxed in 1994.This brewery’s line of beers goes by the name Echizen Fukui ‘Dios’ Beer.  With Echizen and Fukui referencing local place names, and “dios” meaning god.  They offer three main beers: a pilsner, an amber, and a dark ale, and the golden ale is seasonal.

Kochinoiso

VOL


NV Echizen Fukui 'Dios' Pilsner 330ml
NV Echizen Fukui 'Dios' Golden Ale 330ml
NV Echizen Fukui 'Dios' Koshihikari Rice Ale 330ml

Kunizakari

Aichi, JP

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Kunizakari was established in 1844 in Handa City, Aichi. Handa City is situated on the Chita peninsula, about 380km south-west of Tokyo. Handa experiences consistent warm weather (average temperature is 15.5 degree per year) and has lots of natural water under the city. During winter, this warmth assists develop the completion of the Moromi very well. In the Edo period, Edo (Tokyo) was the biggest sake market and sake from Nada (Kobe) was very popular. As Handa City is situated close to Edo market, Handa sake was popular as well in Edo. 30% of sake consumed in Edo was from Chita peninsula at that time.

Kuni means ‘country’ and sakari means ‘prosperity’, so Kunizakari roughly translates as ‘prosper along with the country’. Kunizakari keeps its tradition, whilst welcoming modern techniques to make quality sake. Since the late 1980s, Kunizakari had extended their range of products to include more casual sake based drinks as well as medal winning premium sake.

Kunizakari acknowledges that people’s taste changes and so the brewery adapt to meet what the market wants. Such products include Nigori, Umeshu, Yuzushu, Nigori sparkling with low alcohol such as Toraji no Uta, and other fruit infused sweet sake as well. This is their challenge to keep themselves modern.

Today Kunizakari is a part of the largest Japanese vinegar and food company called Mizkan who are also based in Handa City. Both sake making and vinegar making need a good quality water. When Kunizakari moved into their modern facility, they still kept their history by establishing Kunizakari Sake Museum on their original site. They kept all of their traditional equipment and are open to the public, so people can see and learn how sake industry was in the past.

Déjà vu Sake Co selected Kunizakari’s as a supplier to show the modern side of the Sake world, by choosing sweet/dessert style sake’s for the Australian market.

Umeshu/Yuzushu

VOL


NV Tanrei Yuzushu (7% alc/vol) 1000ml
NV Toraji no Uta (6% alc/vol)* 300ml
NV Nigori Umeshu (10% alc/vol) 500ml
NV Muroka Umeshu (14% acl/vol) 720ml

*Nigori Sparkling Sake

Mars Whisky

Nagano, JP

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The Hombo family, owners of Mars Whisky, first took out a license to distill whisky in 1949, although it was not until 1960 that they started making whisky – and not in Kagoshima, but at a purpose built plant in Yamanashi. This was run by Kiichiro Iwai, who had been Masataka Taketsuru’s immediate superior at the turn of the century and who was responsible for sending Taketsuru to Scotland in 1919 to learn how whisky was produced. Both men had worked for a firm, Settsu Shozu, which had intended to build Japan’s first whisky distillery. Sadly, when Taketsuru returned from Scotland, the firm was in administration.

He went to join Yamazaki, founded Nikka, and the rest is history. Iwai was a whisky man too, and when the plant in Yamanashi started, Iwai used Taketsuru’s original report to make his whisky. It was unsurprisingly, heavy and smoky. Iwai was also responsible for the design of their pot stills and is considered a pioneer in the history and development of pot still whisky in Japan. He is one of only four Japanese, listed in the Top 100 most influential people in the history of whisky in the world. Yamanashi ran for nine years and when production there switched over to wine, distilling moved to Kagoshima, located in the south of Kyushu, where two tiny pot stills also made heavy smoky whisky.

In 1984, production was switched to the current Mars site in Nagano high in the Japanese Alps, which had been chosen because of its altitude (to encourage slow maturation) and the availability of soft granite filtered water.

A style change was also brought in. This whisky was to be light. The few casks from this period show it to be Japan’s sweetest whisky, filled with soft honeyed fruits. Unfortunately timing was bad, and this was the start of Japans great whisky crash, and Mars closed in 1992. With the market opening up again, Mars opened again in 2011.

Mars Whisky

VOL


NV Iwai Whisky (40% alc/vol) 750ml
NV Iwai 'Tradition' Whisky (40% alc/vol) 750ml
NV Iwai 'Tradition' Wine Cask Finish (39% alc/vol) 750ml
NV Maltage 'Cosmo' Blended Malt (43% alc/vol) 700ml
NV Komagatake 'Kohiganzakura' Single Malt (52% alc/vol) 700ml
NV Komagatake 'Shinanotanpopo' Single Malt (52% alc/vol) 700ml
NV Komagatake 'Tsuniki Ageing' Single Cask (59% alc/vol) 700ml
NV Komagatake 30YO ‘American White Oak’ Single Malt (61% alc/vol) 700ml
NV Wa Bi Gin 700ml

All Products Gift-Boxed (except Iwai Wine Cask)

Tengumai

Ishikawa, JP

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Tengumai was founded in 1823 in the late Edo period. The present head is 7th generation. At that time the Kura (brewery) was surrounded by dense forest where Tengu (long-nosed goblin), an imaginary being which had been Japanese tradition with mysterious power seemed to exist.

The name Tengumai is derived from the meaning that even Tengu would dance after tasting this Sake because the Sake tastes so good. Since its foundation, the Shata family has been brewing Sake in this beautiful pastoral area surrounded by mountains which provide the pure local water. The brewery is located in Ishikawa which is in central Japan and faces the Sea of Japan. Ishikawa prefecture is known for its complex Sake style. Within 30 minutes drive from the brewery is the city of Kanazawa, which is renowned for its high level of art, food, culture and their magnificent Japanese gardens. It is considered a smaller version of Kyoto in many ways.

Tengumai, amongst a selection of premium Sakes, produce Yamahai Sake which is very well known and respected, and matches many different foods, and has distinct flavour, texture and taste.

Tengumai

VOL


NV Umajun Junmai* 720ml
NV Umajun Junmai 1800ml
NV Yamahai Jikomi Junmai 300ml
NV Yamahai Jikomi Junmai 720ml
NV Yamahai Jikomi Junmai 1800ml
NV Junmai Daiginjo 50* 720ml
NV Yamahai Junmai Daiginjo* 720ml

*Gift-Boxed

Yoshinogawa

Niigata, JP

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Established in 1548, Yoshinogawa is located in the Niigata Prefecture in the small city of Nagaoka City and is today run by 19th generation owner Kawakami san. Yoshinogawa are the largest Sake producer in the Niigata region which is a well-known major premium rice producing area. Yoshinogawa is also the oldest sake producer in Niigata. The region is known for its crisp, clean sake with a dry finish.

Yoshinogawa are the largest sake producer in our portfolio, and produce a wide range of sake in Japan, of which we have chosen our favourites to bring into Australia. They use a combination of techniques, both ancient and modern to craft both classic and modern interpretations. All of the rice used comes from the Niigata prefecture, and they have strict quality controls over the rice that is used. The water used for rice growing and sake making comes from the subterranean river of the longest river in Japan, the Shinano River.

Yoshinogawa

VOL


NV Gensen Karakuchi 300ml
NV Gensen Karakuchi 720ml
NV Gensen Karakuchi 1800ml
NV Ginjo Gokujo 300ml
NV Echigo Ginjo 720ml
NV Ginjo Gokujo 720ml
NV Tokubetsu Junmai Gokujo 720ml
NV Daiginjo* 720ml
NV Gensen Umeshu 720ml
NV Yuzushu 500ml

*Gift-Boxed