Hey There, Nomidachi!
The "spring" season of limited release namazake is slowly winding down, though we will continue offering them until the distributors run out, and we're excited to say that a couple last-minute new arrivals are here just in time for Memorial Day weekend. Saké of particular note are mentioned below.
Also, though it is, indeed, a holiday weekend, we will be open our normal business hours:
Thurs.- Sat.: 2- 10 pm
Sun.: 2-6 pm
Monday: CLOSED in observance of Memorial Day
Limited Release Spring Namazake
Tamanohikari "Shukon" Shiboritate Genshu (Kyoto)
The good news: After experiencing this fantastic sake at a local izakaya, we tracked down the distributor and made a fuss until they secured us a case.
The bad news: We managed to get our hands on the last case of the season, and half of it has already been sold, so there are only a half-dozen bottles up for grabs, and we'll be pouring and selling it starting tomorrow, 5/25.
Our notes: Candied fruit, cream, and pink grapefruit in the nose. Clean, soft, and full, with a bracing genshu bite in the finish. Elegant, yet hearty. Very limited production, from a brewery founded in 1673 (NOT a typo).
Price: $40/720 ml
Otokoyama Junmai Shiboritate Nama Genshu (Hokkaido)
Aromas of fresh linen, bamboo leaf, and whole grain banana bread. Clean and direct, with a hint of cream. On the drier side, with some delayed spiciness in the finish. And, there's an adorable polar bear on the label, which is nice.
Price: $45/720 ml
Kokuryu Ryu "Gold Dragon" (Fukui)
Ryu is a terrifically elegant daiginjo (the first produced by this brewery), introduced to the Japanese market back in 1975. Apple notes in the nose with hints of cinnamon and brown sugar on the palate. Pleasingly complex, and, again, elegant. The bottle has a funky neck shape to enhance the acoustics of the sake being poured, and the cloth embroidered label and gift box presentation are kind of icing on this fantastic cake.
Price: $100/720 ml
Suigei ("Drunken Whale") Koiku 54 Junmai Ginjo (Kochi)
We heard about this brew from a friend in Japan who heartily recommended it, and we managed to track down the importer and arrange for our distributor to get us some bottles. The only challenge is that it is considered a “special order” item, so we have to commit to buying case quantities. The first 2 cases will arrive toward the end of next week, and they are going very quickly.
With a SMV of +6, Koiku 54 carries on in the Suigei tradition of being on the drier, cleaner side of things, made to drink in mass quantities (like we feel all the good ones are!). In the words of the importer, "Its inherent taste, which speaks volumes about the quality of its raw ingredients, is dry yet carries a discernible solidity. Savor this mixture of umami-filled, refreshing acidic brew chilled, with a meal."
Price: $45/720 ml bottle (10% “case” discount on 6 or more bottles)
ETA: Friday, June 1 (due to the Memorial Day holiday, I anticipate this might possibly get pushed back a week to 6/8)
Order by: Wed., May 30
Johnnie & Taiko
Just a quick blast to let you know we're featuring a special menu of all seasonal namazake this week, and we will be open our regular business hours.
As always, these rare and especially fresh unpasteurized products are very limited, and we hope you have a chance to enjoy some of them before they're gone until next year.
Our featured selections include:
Shichida Junmai Ginjo Muroka Nama Genshu (Saga) Pronounced amber tint and fragrances of white peaches and melon in the nose. Lively, acidic, and incredibly fresh – nearly effervescent. The texture is soft, but the flavor is sharp. In short, “The collected tears of joyously weeping angels.” $80/720 ml bottle
Arigatou, and Kanpai!
Johnnie & Taiko