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Katsuragi Hyakurakumon Bodaimoto Junmai

Hyakurakumon Bodaimoto Junmai is produced with the centuries-old bodaimoto method creating a characteristic, rich sake with lots of umami.
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Sake specs

Nara (奈良)
Rice type
Hinohikari (ひのひかり)
Polishing rate (semaibuai)
Alcohol content
Katsuragi Hyakurakumon Bodaimoto Junmai (葛城酒造 菩提もと仕込み 百楽門)

Katsuragi Hyakurakumon Bodaimoto Junmai (葛城酒造 菩提もと仕込み 百楽門) is made of locally grown Hinohikari rice milled down to 70%. Bodaimoto (see below) is a brewing method created in the Muromachi period at Shōryakuji Temple on Mt Bodai in Nara and characterised by the usage of raw rice and direct lactic acid fermentation. Bodaimoto is the origin of the modern namamoto and yamahaimoto methods. Hyakurakumon Bodaimoto Junmai is a characteristic, rich sake with lots of umami. The high acidity makes it feel like lukewarm sake, even when chilled. It can be paired with savoury dishes.

Katsuragi Hyakurakumon Bodaimoto Junmai (葛城酒造 菩提もと仕込み 百楽門) Katsuragi Hyakurakumon Bodaimoto Junmai (葛城酒造 菩提もと仕込み 百楽門) Katsuragi Hyakurakumon Bodaimoto Junmai (葛城酒造 菩提もと仕込み 百楽門) Katsuragi Hyakurakumon Bodaimoto Junmai (葛城酒造 菩提もと仕込み 百楽門)


About the brewery

Katsuragi Shuzō
Name in Japanese
347-2 Nagara, Gose, Nara 639-2321
Katsuragi Brewery is located in Nagara, Gose, Nara Prefecture and is known for its Hyakurakumon (百楽門) brand. Katsuragi is particularly famous for their nigorizake brewed with the traditional bodaimoto (菩提もと) method that originated at Shōryakuji Temple (正暦寺) in the Muromachi Period. Initially, a branch of the Kubo (久保) family brewing sake in Matsuyamachō (later Uda), Nara, bought an oilery in Gose in 1887 and established a sake brewery. In February 1962, the company was incorporated as Kubo Brewery and changed its name to Katsuragi Brewery in 1973.

The water used for sake brewing is underground water from the Katsuragi mountain range pumped up from 100 metres underground.

Bodaimoto (菩提もと)

Shōryakuji Temple in Bodaisenchō, Nara, is often called the birthplace of sake. It is famous for its beautiful autumn foliage. While it is just a small temple with a hondō (本堂, main hall) and a kōdō (講堂, lecture hall) remaining, it was a large temple with many pagodas, buildings and monks in its heyday.

It is said that modern sake was perfected about 500 years ago in the Muromachi period (1336-1573), derived from the sake brewed by Buddhist monks. Long before places such as Itami, Fushimi, and Nada started to produce sake in the Edo period, Nara was already well advanced in brewing technology. Shōgun Ashikaga Yoshimasa praised Nara's sake, especially that of Shōryakuji, as the best sake in the world. At Shōryakuji, the bodaimoto, the "prototype" of today's sake, was developed, and from here, this brewing method spread across Japan.

Shōryakuji became the first temple in Japan to obtain a sake brewing licence from the National Tax Administration, reviving the old tradition of sake brewing in January 1999 after a hiatus of 500 years. The fourteen breweries in the prefecture participating in the 'Prefectural Bodaimoto Sake Production Study Group' (県菩提もとによる清酒製造研究会 Ken Bodaimoto ni yoru Seishu Seizō Kenkyūkai) created fourteen new brands, all of them unique junmai sake with high acidity and amino acid content.

In the bodaimoto method, Hinohikari rice grown in Nara and rock water from the precincts of Shōryakuji are used. Production starts in January when 176 kilos of raw rice are washed and placed in a tank with 194 litres of water and rice kept at 30°C. Eventually, lactic acid bacteria propagate to form soyashimizu (そやし水). After two days, the raw rice is taken out, steamed, and mixed with more soyashimizu and kōji at 15 to 17 °C. Each of the fourteen breweries uses the bodaimoto method to produce unique sake.

Latest reviews

Colour / hue
Hyakurakumon Bodaimoto Junmai is dry! How dry seems to depend on the year. Previous years saw it at +13 SMV. Ours had +10, which still translated into one of the "driest" sake we ever had the pleasure to taste. It has a nose of dried fruits and nuts, with solid notes of koji and rice. It is very herbal and pungent at room temperature with a spicy, almost pepper-like finish. When consumed lukewarm, as recommended, it is still tangy but with a creamier texture and notes of honey.
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4.00 star(s) 1 ratings
〒639-2321 奈良県御所市名柄347-2

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