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For sake's sake


Unswerving cyclist
14 Mar 2002
Any sake lovers on board? 🙂:

On a saturday afternoon in Tokyo, Satoshi Kimijima is lecturing at a wine salon run by famed sommelier Shinya Tasaki. A dozen students swirl their wine glasses and take little sips. "The bouquet is reminiscent of pears," one student comments. "The taste has a definitive rice flavour." Rice? Well, yes. This may look and sound like a wine tasting, but today the glasses are filled not with wine, but sake. It's just the latest idea of Satoshi Kimijima, president of Japanese sake retailer Kimijimaya, who believes we just aren't doing enough to discover the full potential of Japan's national drink. "There are many kinds of sake that should be appreciated as much as the best wines in the world," Kimijima says. "What I'm trying to do is to make both Japanese and foreigners aware of this." His latest idea? Wine glasses. Sake is normally drunk in a small traditional cup called a choko. But, says Kimijima, a wine glass brings out the flavours of a high-quality sake in a way a choko just can't (and emphasizes the worst of a bad sake). To prove his point, he fills the bottom of a glass with Gikyo Yorokobi, one of the more expensive sakes--a 1.8 litre bottle costs 12,000 yen ($103). Sure enough, the sake's fruity flavour tastes much milder and the finish lasts much longer. [...]

For a salad, Kimijima suggests Gikyo Junmai 1er Grand Cru Classe A Yamadanishiki. "It's perfect for starters as it tastes soft, yet dry, has sufficient acidity and natural fragrance," he says. The 720-millilitre bottle sells for 1,500 yen. [...] Moving on to the cheese plate, he recommends serving a 1982 Shinkame Junmai with a hard, aromatic cheese like comtテゥ. Meanwhile, a namazake like Matsumoto Junmai Shiboritate draws out the flavour in something like chevre, a goat cheese. Namazake even goes with pastries. "Matured namazake has a strawberry flavour, so it goes well with strawberry tart or thick chocolate cake," he says. The best choice would be a 1982 bottle of the premier Iwanoi sake (¥6,000 for 720 millilitres). It's thick and sweet, just like a good port wine.

=> feer.com/articles/2003/0303_20/p048current.html (free registration required)
Hmm... interesting concept with using the wine glasses to enhance the flavor although i've never much been a fan of sake per se (an acquired taste I guess). Although i'm not much of a drinker in general, for social occasions I much rather prefer a good Japanese beer over sake especially when eating say sushi for example (Asahi Superdry comes to mind). Then again, if I could afford to try some of the nicer sake flavors more often I might be more partial to it 8-p

:) Sake is wonderful stuff; especially when warm, because it glides down the throat like a warm breeze. (Okay, so I'm mixing metaphors, but that's what it feels like)
I like sake, though I always seemed to put it in its own classification in my head, not a wine, but not booze either, just sake.
I can only speak for myself, but I tend to be a "take a sip, chew something, swallow, repeat" type of guy when it comes to my meals. For me, sake just isn't appealing to my pallete in this case. Unlike me though, i've noticed that a lot of people tend to prefer their drinks or beverages until after they have completed their course, wholly abstaining while they eat. I suppose if I were drinking sake for sake's sake then this would not be so bad perhaps. I do like the suggestion about tasting with cheese as these two might go well together, although i'm a bit skeptical about the pastry/cake idea, heh.
i drunken sake with a meal once, wasnt too fond of that experience. probally because its was 15 months after the best before date stamped on the bottle, but hey i didnt notice that til it was empty. stupid restraunt. i do like drinking it by itself, and often bring a bottle to parties. which led me to the knowledge that some kinds are pretty good mixed up with orange juice.
I've turned into quite a drinker lately, but i've never been able to stomach wine, whether it's made from grapes or rice.
Peter, in case you come to Vienna, there's no way you could avoid wine, lol. And I like to drink my sake cold.
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