Keeping it Fresh
Updated: Nov 12, 2018
Most sake available have been pasteurized twice; this is done to temper brash flavors/aromas and help prolong shelf-life. You won't find them that often (stateside), but there are a few sake out there that are either pasteurized only once or not at all. This week, we're focusing on two delicious brews whose nama (unpasteurized) nature highlight the sake's liveliness. Just remember to keep them refrigerated and fresh until you're ready to drink!
Kikusui Funaguchi Gold Honjozo Nama Genshu
From an area known for and clean and dry styles comes a sweet little surprise in the shape of a golden can. Kikusui Funaguchi is a very rich and full bodied sake that is unpasteurized, and undiluted (a walloping 19% ABV), tasting of honey and banana nut bread. While the can helps protect this delicious liquid from harmful UV light, its size makes it easy to carry out and about. Pair with rich or spicy dishes like fried Tteokbokki, BBQ eel, or fat juicy cheeseburgers.
Dassai “Otter Fest” Sparkling Nigori Junmai Daiginjo
Dassai has enjoyed tremendous popularity in the US for all the right reasons. It is unusual for a brewery to produce a sake line entirely of Junmai Daiginjo, but Asahi Shuzo’s dedication to making refined premium sake has really set them apart. Recent flooding in Japan earlier this summer had calamitous results for the brewery. Production came to a full halt and the damages were estimated to be over $10 million USD: 900,000 bottles were lost in the mud, 10 tons of Yamadanishiki rice ruined, and a goodly amount of in-production sake spoiled or deemed unfit to release under the Dassai name. In other -happier- news, word on the street is that Dassai makers are getting back on track and even looking to open another brewery here in the US!
This a fresh and lively sparkling libation is semi-sweet and naturally carbonated (using the champagne method). Festive and vivacious, lightly fruity, floral, with a faint salinity and elegant bubbles that will surely lift your spirits. We prefer to pair this bubbly with creamy foods like fresh soft goat cheese, agedashi tofu, or roasted delicata squash with sage and orange.
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