Brewing traditions in Japan’s Leading Sake Region
The essence of life, and of sake. Many regions of Hyogo are blessed with quality water, which makes them famous as well for the quality of their local sake.Nada in particular is known for its miyamizu spring water, which is of a semi-hard type rare in the Kansai region. It contains the perfect balance of minerals for producing sake, and has been the key to sake brewing in the Nadagogo area since the late Edo Period.
The head brewers, responsible for overseeing the brewery, its staff, and its products, are known as tōji. Even as mechanisation continues to advance and brewing methods are modernized, tōji play the single most important role in maintaining the quality of the sake. Some of Japan’s most skilled and respected tōji are based in Hyogo’s Tanba and Tajima regions. The skills and techniques passed down over generations, practiced and preserved by the tōji continue to produce the region’s finest sake.
The sake rice used in sake brewing is a special type, distinct from the table rice Japanese eat daily. The prime-quality sake made with the matchless Hyogo Yamada Nishiki rice is notable for its rich aroma. The prefecture also produces such notable brands of sake rice as Gohyakumangoku, Hyogo Kita Nishiki, Hyogo Fuku Nishiki, and Fukuno Hana. Each lends its own characteristic flavor to the varieties of sake produced across breweries.
Hyogo boasts nine separate brewing associations across all parts of the prefecture, each producing sake with their own distinctive tastes and palates. Within Hyogo you’ll find a full range of sake ranging from sweet to dry and light to heavy. Visit the traditional home of Japanese sake, and trace the history and culture of Japan’s national drink.
SAKE BREWERIES GUIDE酒蔵ガイド
Akashi Brewers Association