Kamoizumi

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Country of Origin: Japan
Location: Hiroshima Prefecture, Chugoku
People: Hisao Maegaki

Items

Kamoizumi (720 ml) 'Red Maple' 2-Year Aged Junmai Ginjo Namazume Genshu, Hiroshima Prefecture New! Login On Order

From December through March, the Saijo area west of Hiroshima has an average temperature of 38 degrees Fahrenheit with low humidity. The water is mildly alkaline. The rice is good. It is one of the most favored brewing locales in the entire Japanese archipelago.

The Maegaki family, who run Kamoizumi, started out as rice farmers who became landlords and then moved into "value added" areas such as rice milling and eventually sake brewing at the onset of the modern era in 1910. In 1965, Kamoizumi became one of ten pioneering breweries committed to junmai sake production at a time when breweries all over Japan were heavy-handedly adding brewers alcohol to their vats to make as much money as possible. In 1971, Kamoizumi introduced its first junmai label.

During the 70s, it was common practice to filter pressed sake through charcoal to remove impurities and attain the pure, colorless state that was the aesthetic ideal. In contrast, Kamoizumi brewers felt that the impurities were essential characteristics of the sake and that to remove them entirely was to compromise the essential nature of its identity. Today, perhaps no other brewery in Japan has taken a stronger stand for individuality than Kamoizumi. Their sake has attitude: robust, tawny, full-flavored, yet with the smooth finish and easy drinkability that are the hallmarks of technical mastery. Aging and blending are paramount, and when finally released, the Kamoizumi labels pair well with meat dishes and Chinese cuisine, a rarity in the sake world. For the connoisseur, their supple balance of sweetness, acidity, astringency and the elusive flavor component of "umami" is without peer.