“ZUIHOU Brewery”(All season sake brewing factory) Japanese Sake is an alcoholic beverage brewed primarily from rice and cultivated rice known as rice Koji, and is one of the three major alcoholic beverages produced by the process of fermentation along with beer and wine.Japanese Sake is further characterized by the very unique brewing process called “multiple parallel fermentation”in which the starch in the rice is converted into sugar by the Koji, and the sugar is converted into alcohol by the yeast.Japanese Sake contains a high volume of amino acids produced as a result of the natural workings of the microorganisms, Koji mold and yeast, and has recently gained attention as a product that promotes good health and beauty.
Sawanotsuru uses the finest quality brewing rice called, a pure water source in Miya Natural Spring Water and the traditional brewing methods of the master brewer to provide people all over the world with the ultimate Japanese Sake.
A pure water source is the secret to producing the ultimate Sake
Natural water of Mt.Rokko Each Sake brewing region in Japan has its own source of pure water used in the brewing process.Among these are several sources included in the list of top 100 pure water sources designated by the Japanese government. One of the more well-known water sources on this list is Nada-Miya Spring Water, sourced from the coastal fringes to the east of Hyogo Prefecture.
The majority of Sake brewed by Sawanotsuru is made using this pristine water. Discovered in 1840, Miya Spring Water is the product of rain that falls on the Rokko Mountains. This water is filtered through a granite belt where it runs underground towards the coastline. This water containing carbonic acid that bubbles from the rock formations in the Rokko ranges acts to dissolve layers of fossilized shells further hardening the water while also adding to it unique properties that make it ideal for Sake brewing.The distinct flavor of Nada Sake, brewed during the cold winter, pressed and stored in autumn and kept over summer to produce a full-bodied and mellow flavor called Akibare（秋晴れ）, is dependent on the pure Miya Spring Water.
The flavor of Japanese Sake is dependent on the rice
Rice paddy of Yamadanishiki The primary ingredients of Japanese Sake are rice and water (there is also pure Sake made only from rice and water) and in the past, brewing regions throughout Japan have nearly almost always been located near famous rice producing areas. Of the varied rice strains used in the Sake brewing process, brewer’s rice is the most ideal owing to its larger grain size, weight and larger white core.
There is one strain of rice in particular, Yamada Nishiki that has garnered the name of “The King” of all brewing rice strains. Sake brewed from Yamada Nishiki rice is characterized by a crisp flavor and a subtle mellowness.It is the preferred rice of Sake brewers all over Japan reputed to give Sake a full-bodied taste and unique sweet quality.Sake brewed at Sawanotsuru is made from Yamada Nishiki and other suitable rice for brewing adhering strictly to traditional brewing methods.
The role of the master brewer"Toji"
Sawanotsuru Head Brewer Kikuji Deguchi The purest water and finest quality rice amounts to nothing without the skill of the master brewer to draw out its full potential. Sawanotsuru embraces traditional brewing methods passed down over a long history and these methods still form the cornerstone of brewing today. Among these is a three-stage process and the age-old Kimoto brewing method.The three stage process involves carefully polishing high-grade rice like one would polish a precious stone, steaming it and adding it together with water and Koji to the starter mash in three different stages to allow the yeast to keep up with the increased volume and aid the fermentation process. The Kimoto brewing method is a traditionally orthodox method for preparing the starter mash. It is very labor intensive and involves grinding steamed rice, Miya Spring Water and Koji into a paste and using natural yeast and the natural process of lactic acid fermentation to draw out the full flavor of the rice.
Both of these methods require measured skill and experience. And, it is the Toji, or brew master who oversees these processes. The Toji must be a person of integrity who in addition to having extensive experience, is also required to have strong leadership and management qualities and sound judgment.Sawanotsuru is committed to maintaining and passing on these traditional methods to future generations.