Shizuoka Vintage Sake (1): Masu-Ichi


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Please check Shizuoka Gourmet Blog for all the gastronomy in Shizuoka Prefecture!

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I have the particular luck to know a liquor shop, Matsunaga Saketen (Japanese), whose owner, Mr. Matsunaga, has collected and safely stored sake from the Showa Era, that is, since 1988 and before! He even has introduced his stock on the internet, a document that any Japanese-reading sake-lover ought to consult!
But I certainly will not limit myself to reading!
Melinda, Etsuko and even Tim are going to scream unfair! selfish! &%$#”#$ or whatever else, when they find out I have decided to explore the whole Shizuoka stock. Mr matsunaga also has other brews from different regions as demonstrated by the two Niigata sake dating back to 1977 I was gracefully offered to taste when I paid him a visit last Thursday to get my first two vintage bottles! Absolute nectars!

Masu Ichi Brewery (Shizuoka City): Junmai Nama Tsume, August 7th, 1987

Note: labels then did not follow the present classification system and do read a bit quaint:
This brew is declared as 二級/Second Grade. It also bears the mentions 米だけの酒/sake made from rice only, and 高級清酒/high grade sake!

Alcohol: 15~16 degrees
Contents: 300ml


Unusual shape for a 300ml bottle, too!

Clarity: Very clear
Colour: Almost transparent
Aroma: Oaky but discreet, hints of nuts and almonds
Body: Velvety to fluid
Taste: Short tail. Dry at first, then mellowing inside mouth. Junmai tingle.
Bitter chocolate, nuts, almonds.
Turns dry with food.

Overall: Very well preserved and easy to drink considering its old age. Just a faint hint of “oldishness”. Very different impression from present day sake, but very pleasurable. Reminded me of sake I used to drink a long time ago: more earthy and macho (Tim, don’t ask me!).
Lots of character, complex.
Could be enhanced by warming it first (300ml was ot enough to explore that particular route, unfortunately!).
A sake devised for food.

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