Temperatures are supposed to heat up in Seattle this weekend, but rest assured that we'll be keeping things as cool as possible at your Seattle saké oasis.
This week's menu is pretty terrific, featuring some seasonal rarities, as well as some established Saké Nomi favorites. Some standouts include:
Kuro Kabuto Junmai Daiginjo (Fukuoka)
The Darth Vader of saké strikes back! Dark straw coloring (from lack of charcoal filtering), with raspberry, melon and sweet floral aromas. Earthy, grounded, slightly tart sweetness, rich in umami. Soft, yet pleasantly acidic. This saké is made with “black” kuro koji (usually reserved for shochu production), which resembles a traditional samurai helmet (kabuto) when seen under a microscope.
Kagatobi Muroka Nama Junmai (Ishikawa)
Limited return engagement of this special seasonal release (The distributor's purchaser made a mistake, but we all benefit!). Shiny gold in the glass, and the nose has notes of candied fruit and a hint of earthiness. It tastes intriguingly dry AND rich, even a bit spicy. It packs a genshu-esque (undiluted) punch at 18% ABV, but with a very soft, gentle mouthfeel.
Denshin Haru "Spring" Junmai Ginjo (Fukui)
This nama (unpasteurized) genshu (undiluted) has a brilliant golden hue with a gorgeous floral and candied bouquet. Richly flavored, with intense ripe peach fruitiness on the palate. Viscous, almost syrupy texture is nicely contrasted with perfect acidity. Easily one of the most popular and best-selling namazake ever served at Saké Nomi, but if you want to enjoy it this year, please don't hesitate: we're down to the last dozen bottles in Washington!
Kikusakari Taru "Cedar Barrel" Junmai (Ibaraki)
This saké shows well-balanced touches of sweetness, astringency, and spice. Before the age of bottling (circa 1909), all saké was stored in cedar casks called taru. Taruzake (“cedar barrel saké”) often takes on a strong flavor due to the wood, and is a throwback to the traditions of the past.
And, newly ensconced in the beer cooler:
Hitachino Nest Red Rice Ale (Ibaraki)
This unique, slightly strong (7% alcohol) ale is brewed using a strain of “heirloom” rice and a combination of ale and saké yeasts. Gorgeous in the glass, the saké and malt flavors are contrasted by notes of strawberry in the nose and on the palate, and a touch of bitterness in the finish (from the brewer's of the above mentioned Kikusakari Taru).
Saké Nomi Cinema: Kampai! For the Love of Sake
August 24 (Wed.) @ 8 pm
August 27 (Sat.) @ 8 pm
Kampai! For the Love of Sake takes a glimpse inside the world of sake by introducing the stories of three passionate industry insiders: Nanbu Bijin brewery owner and master brewer Kosuke Kuji, British-born master brewer Philip Harper of Kinoshita Brewery (Tamagawa label), and "Sake Evangelist" (our "Sake Daddy") and sake journalist/educator John Gauntner.
For a taste of what's to come, please check out the trailer.
To celebrate this film's U.S. release, we will be featuring sake from Tamagawa and Nanbu Bijin on next week's menu and we will be offering special flights and discounted glass pours during both Wednesday's and Saturday's screenings.
We encourage both sake fans and restaurant/industry professionals to attend and participate in what should be a spirited post-screening discussion.
Thanks so much for reading and for your continued enthusiasm and support for what we do at Saké Nomi and our love of sake.
Johnnie & Taiko
Major League Baseball holds its annual All-Star Game every July, and somewhere along the line it's become known as the "Mid-Summer Classic."
This week, we've got our own luscious lineup of all-star unpasteurized namazake that make for a pretty classic mid-summer tasting menu. Our featured sake selections include:
Denshin Natsu "Summer" Daiginjo (Fukui)
New-to-Washington and exclusive to Saké Nomi! Sunflower yellow tint with notes of honeysuckle, chamomile, and roasted marshmallow in the nose. Soft, creamy mouthfeel, with significant weight. Rich, mellow, and clean, but with a hint of smokiness.
Seikyo "Omachi" Namazake Tokubetsu Junmai (Hiroshima)
Soft & citrusy, with a luxurious, almost viscous mouthfeel. Notes of grapefruit and lemon throughout, creating a wonderful, beguiling contrast between the sharpness of the acidic citrus elements and the silky texture. Traces of minerality and astringency on the edges make it an ideal pairing for oysters on the half-shell.
Denshin Haru "Spring" Junmai Ginjo (Fukui)
This nama (unpasteurized) genshu (undiluted) has a brilliant golden hue with a gorgeous floral and candied bouquet. Richly flavored, with intense ripe peach fruitiness on the palate. Viscous, almost syrupy texture is nicely contrasted with perfect acidity.
Oyama "Nama" Tokubetsu Junmai (Yamagata)
Slight golden hue. Soft, round mouthfeel, with flavors of cinnamon and apples. Clean, soft, and mellow, with a touch of minerality. Oyama means "big mountain," so enjoy the ascent!
Hakkaisan Shiboritate Genshu Honjozo (Niigata)
Clean, mild sea breeze aroma. Soft and clean flavors on the palate, with a hint of creaminess. Very faint sweetness is present, but tending toward dry in the finish, making this unpasteurized and undiluted beauty fresh and full, without the fruit.
Kubota Ginjo Genshu (Niigata)
Very faint golden tint with notes of Asian pear and cream in the nose. Soft, moderately full mouthfeel, with sweetness and roundness in the beginning palate, giving way to a drier, lingering genshu tingle in the finish.
We'll be offering these wonderful, mostly seasonal, treats by the glass, flight, and bottle throughout the weekend, while supplies last. We understand that our distributors' stock is running very low, so please don't hesitate if you're interested in coming by for a taste and snagging a bottle or two.
As always, thank you for reading, and for all your kind referrals. We hope to see you at Saké Nomi again soon.
Johnnie & Taiko