Fruity, soft, round and so very smooth, this sake is one of Niigata’s finest and a fantastic example of the light style of niigata brewing. Enjoy this sake with lighter fare such as white fish, raw or seared, and it is hard to beat as an aperitif as well. Keep chilled and best served around 10°C.
Recommended Pairing: White fish sashimi, steamed chicken or seafood, fresh vegetables or carpaccio.
Grade: Daiginjo – Daiginjo sake is made up of only rice, rice koji, water, yeast, and a small amount of pure distilled alcohol. The rice used to brew this sake must be polished at least to 50% of its original size. Daiginjo sake is almost always more expensive because brewers use double or more the amount of rice to create the same amount of sake.
Sake Meter Value (SMV): +5
Region: Niigata Prefecture in the Chūbu region
History of Hakuryu Brewery
The Shirai family founded the Hakuryu brewery in 1839 during the Shogun’s era. Niigata City was then a bustling port for the Kitamaebune trading ships. The predecessors of this brewery once served as shipping agents who traveled to and from Hokkaido, and one member of the family began brewing sake due to the increase in demand as sake became a popular specialty of Niigata.
As descendants of the family business related to ships, they named their brewery Hakuryu -White Dragon – an imaginary animal, considered a guardian for marine vessels in prayer for prosperity in this area. Hakuryu Sake made by by their chief brewers (toji) Yuzuru Yamakawa and Shinji Sharai. Yamakawa is one of the foremost toji in Niigata with over half a century of sake making.
Hakruryu sake has been recognized not only in Japan but also internationally, and has won the “Gold Award” at Monde Selection for 27 consecutive years since 1994. Among them the “Daiginjo Hakuryu” won the gold medal in 1997, “Junmai Daiginjo Hakuryu” in 2002, and “Tokusen Daiginjo Sasaya Shigezaemon” in 1999 .