Archive for November, 2008

Shizuoka Sake Tasting 8/9: Sogatsuru-Hagi No Kura Brewery

November 19, 2008


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

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soga-tenko

Sogatsuru-Hagi No Kura Brewery, located in Kakegawa City, which rose again like the legendary Phoenix is steadily growing in stature and fame as their new brews amply prove!

Sogatsuru-Hagi No Kura Brewery: Tenkoo Junmai Genshu

Rice milled down to 60%
Dryness: +3
Acidity: 1.3
Yeast: Shizuoka yeast
Alcohol: 16~17 degrees
Bottled in October 2008

Clarity: Very clear
Colour: Light Golden Tinge
Body: Velvety
Aroma: Discreet. Fruity: pear, coconuts.
Taste: Short tail. Sweetish attack with dry finish. Nice alcohol. Fruity: Coconuts milk, banana, coffee beans, bitter chocolate, vanilla. Very complex.
Turns drier with food.

Comments: A very solid sake revealing multiple facets backed by a dry acid finish.
Probably best enjoyed with solid izakaya food.
Unusual sake for Shizuoka!

Sushi restaurant: Ekimae Matsuno Sushi (revisited)

November 18, 2008


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

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As the grotty weather last Sunday prevented any cricket to be played, I just went to do some “work” at my classroom. When lunch came, I decided it was about time I paid a visit to an old favourite sushi restaurant of mine, namely Ekimae Matsuno Sushi in fornt of Shizuoka City JR Station.
They do make a point to serve local fish whenever practical and last Sunday was no exception!
And they serve Shizuoka Sake only!

matsuno-2008-11-10b
The “snack” served with the sake (See below article) from Yoshiya Brewery in Shizuoka was “Seguro Iwashi”/”black back sardine”, a succulent fatty fish in season.

matsuno-2008-11-10c
The “sashimi no moriawase”/sashimi plate were all fish (as well as all other fish cited in this article) brought from Yaizu Harbour in Central Shizuoka Prefecture:
From left to right:
-“Akami”/tuna lean part
-“Yari Ika”/cuttle-fish (calamari)
-“Kawahagi to Kimo”/filefish cut in thin strips and mixed with its own liver. Sweet dipped in a mixture of three different miso paste rice vinegar!
-“Bora”/mullet. So fresh there was no need for soy sauce. Just a little “yuzu”/lime juice was perfect!

matsuno-2008-11-10d

The chef recommended a couple of seasonal morsels:
the first one, above, was “Tachiuo Aburi”/scabbard fish lightly grilled on one side. Just a little salt, wasabi and lime juice. The meat melts away between your teeth!

matsuno-2008-11-10e
The second one was “Houbo”/blue fin robin. Tender and sweet!

matsuno-2008-11-10d_0001

As for dessert I asked for “Tamagoyaki”/Japanese omelette (not shown) and “Kanpyou Maki”/dry gourd shavings maki!

Here are my tastig notes for the sake:

Yoshiya Brewery (Shizuoka City): Chuumasa Junmai Ginjo
Alcohol: 15~16 degrees
Contents: 300ml
Bottled: April 2008

Clarity: Very clear
Colour: Transparent
Aroma: Dry, light and fruity: Pineapple, ricey
Body: Velvety
Taste: Short tail. Junmai tingle. Complex. Fruity: Pineapple, almonds, nuts, coffee beans.
Nice acid finish with bitter chocolate, coffee beans and banan.
Turns drier with food with a strong comeback by coffee beans and almonds, although it did surprise me with a sweetish finish at times.

Overall: A “Shizuoka Type” Sake.
Very elegant, pleasant and easy to drink.
Great with sushi and sashimi.
Strong character and many facets revealed all way through.

Ekimae Matsuno Sushi
Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Oyuki Cho, 9-3 (just across from Shizuoka JR Station North Exit after Matsuzakaya Dept)
Tel.: 054-2510123
Business hours: 11:00~21:00
Closed on Wednesdays
Credit Cards OK
HOMEPAGE (Japanese)

Shizuoka Sake Tasting 11/10: Hatsukame Brewery

November 12, 2008


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hatsu-gohyaku

I’ve always entertained a special love for Hatsukame Brewery’s creations and quaint retro labels.
They have the healthy habit of regularly coming up with new experiments, proving their courage in these gloomy economic times!
Incidentally, the Brewery will have to change its address soon as Okabe Cho will become part of Fujieda City soon!

Hatsukame Brewery: Junmai Ginjo Kamemaru

Rice: Hyakumagoku 100%
Rice milled down to 50%
Dryness:0
Acidity: 1.5
Alcohol: 15~16 degrees
Bottled in October 2008

Clarity: Very clear
Colour: Light golden tinge
Aroma: Fruity, liquorice, gum jelly
Body: Velvety
Taste: Short tail. Smooth attack. Fruity. Complex. Sweetish. Liquorice, coffee beans, bitter chocolate.
Turns drier later with almonds, bananas and coffee beans making an appearance.

Overall: Complex sake fit for both drinking on its own and enjoying it with food.
A lot of character. Typical of this brewery.
Dry in spite of the indicated 0 dryness.
Very enjoyable. Great sake to explore!
Lovely retro label!

Umeshu: Garyubai by Sanwa Brewery

November 11, 2008


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

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umeshu-sanwa

Umeshu comes under different guises in Japan, but if you buy one instead of making it yourself make sure you buy one brewed by a reputable Brewery!
In Shizuoka Prefecture, umeshu is an extravagant affair when made by the local breweries.
Sanwa Brewery in Shimizu Ku, Shizuoka City is no exception!

Sanwa Brewery Garyubai Umeshu

Alcohol: 12 degrees (fairly low for Shizuoka but still high when compared with cheap stuff!)
Ingredients: Japanese Plum (“Ume”), Sake. Sugar.

Clarity: Very clear at rest. Smoky if stirred beforehand
Colour: Orange/sepia
Aroma: Ver fragrant and sweet plums.
Body: Velvety~fluid
Taste: Dry attack, turns sweet later. Shortish tail. Very pleasant impression. Elegant.

Overall: Very enjoyable and easy to drink.
Fine at room temperature.
Makes for a great aperitif when chilled.
Great with cheese at room temperature.
Elegant beverage. Should please both ladies and gentlemen!

Shizuoka Sake Tasting 18/10: Hamamatsu-Tenjingura Brewery

November 10, 2008


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

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ten-teki-yamahai1

That particular posting should interest the Good Beer and Country Boys who have recenly visited this Brewery!
This is the second brew of the very limited Ten=Teki Series, an extravagant Junmai Yamahai!
Note that this is the first Yamahai concocted by this Brewery!

Hamamatsu-Tejingura Brewery: Ten=Teki Junmai Yamahai
Rice: Yamada Nishiki 100%
Rice milled down to 50% (absolutely extravagant!)
Dryness: -13
Acidity: 3.1 (very high for Shizuoka!)
Yeast: No9 & Shizuoka NEW-5
Production 1,000 bottles
Bottled in October 2008

Clarity: Very clear
Colour: Transparent
Aroma: Fruity and dry, green apples, coffee beans, vanilla, oranges.
Body: Velvety
Taste: Shortish tail. Fruity and velvety attack. Complex. Green apples. Turns dry in mouth with a nice acid finish. Persimmons, oranges, bananas and apricots made an appearance with second sip.
Turns dry with food.

Overall: A very solid sake showing multiple facets backed by a dry acid finish in spite of very sweet figures.
Probably best enjoyed with heavy food.
Unusual sake for Shizuoka!

Shizuoka Sake Tasting 18/9: Hamamatsu-Tenjingura Brewery

November 4, 2008


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

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ten-teki-koshu

Hamamatsu-Tenjingura Brewery in Hamamatsu City has come up with a great end-of-the-year present: Koshu/Old sake!

Hamamatsu-Tenjingura Brewery: Ten-Teki Koshu (futsushu)

Originally brewed in 1997 and bottled in September 2008 (11 years old!)
Rice: Yamada Nishiki, 40%, Gohyakumangoku, 60%
Rice milled down to 60%(even so it is declared as a futsushu!)
Dryness: -36
Acidity: 1.8
Alcohol: 15~16 degrees
Yeast: No 9
Production limited to 500 (500 ml)

Clarity: Very clear
Colour: Rich golden hue
Aroma: Rich, strong, port wine, fruity, persimmons, almonds
Body: Velvety
Taste: Rich and sweet at first. Slightly syrupy. Very fruity: almonds, apricots, persimmons and mandarines.
Finishes with a faint acid note.
Rich balance between sweetness and acidity appearing with food.

Overall: A very original sake!
Rare sweetness for Shizuoka.
Chilled, it drinks as a great aperitif.
At room temperature, eases down a rich port.
A discovery!

9 sake in Shizuoka receive the accolade in Nagoya!

November 4, 2008


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

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nagoya-sake
(Shizuoka Shinbun)

9 Sake from Shizuoka have received the top accolade at the Annual Sake Tasting recently held at the Nagoya National Tax Office featured sake from Shizuoka, Aichi, Mie and Gifu Prefectures.

-Honjozo Section (67 entrants): Aoitenka (Kakegawa City) and Oomuraya (Shimada City) Breweries.

-Junmai Section: Yoshiya (Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku), Sanwa (Shizuoka City, Shimizu Ku), Oomuraya (Shimada City) and Fujinishiki (Shibakawa Cho)

-Ginjo Section: Doi (Kakegawa City), Oomuraya (Shomada City) and Sanwa (Shizuoka City, Shimizu Ku) Breweries.

Congratulations!

Shizuoka Izakaya: Kaze To Matsu

November 4, 2008


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

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Kaze To Matsu is a great example of a successful Izakaya which shows that a chef’s origins do not matter when recognizing and serving an intelligent combination of produce from Shizuoka and other Prefectures.

Mr. Matsumiya, for all his relative youth, shows a remarkable eclectism when choosing Shizuoka Sake to accompany brews from Gunma Prefecture, his home: Hakauin Masamune (Takashima Brewery, Numazu City), Isojiman (Yaizu City), Shidaizumi (Fujieda City) and Hana no Mai (Hamamatsu City). Naturally, all kinds of drinks, including wine, are available.
The place, seating 11 at the counter and 14 at very comfortable tables, is very popular, and I would definitely recommend anyone to reserve especially on week-ends.
My good friend Patrick and I made a point to come before opening hours to reserve two seats at the counter and we certainly well when the establishment was packed by 18:00!
We are both fans of sushi and ordered the “Special Sashimi Plate”.

From left to right:
“Kanpachi”/Japanese Amberjack, “Tennen Maguro”/Wild Tuna, “Nama Yuba”/Tofu Sheets, “Suwagani”/Suwa Crab, “Kanpachi” again, “Tachiuo”/Scabbard Fish (under the shiso flowers) and “Koushin Daikon”/A red inside daikon variety.

We spotted some fresh seashells on display. I had noticed them before, but I couldn’t remember their name. “Shirogai” is the usual name in Japan, meaning White Seashell.

As they were still alive and appetizing, we opted for a plate of sashimi!
Almost sweet they were, a discovery!

The menu is very extensive and we had to limit ourselves to favourites for our first visit!
The tenpura (above pic) are served one at a time as they should be! Succulent!

Vegetarians and vegans will rejoice to learn that Kaze To Matsu serve “Yuki Yasai Sarada”/Organic Vegetables Salad! Very well-chosen seasonal vegetables only.

A gentle piece of advice:
Whatever you have savoured, do end with their “Tamagoyaki”/Japanese Omelette!
I can assure ou you won’t need any dessert!

Kaze To Matsu
Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Hitoyado-Cho, 1-4, 1F
Tel.: 054-251-2004
Business hours: 17:30~24:00
Closed on Mondays
HOMEPAGE (Japanese)


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