Welcome to the world of sake. If you are reading this pamphlet, you have likely already tasted sake or are keen to try it at least once. Japan boasts a proud 2,000-year history of sake brewing. Sake has long been the drink of choice among Japanese, and now, as Japanese food enjoys extraordinary popularity abroad, sake is increasingly exported. Sake is made primarily from rice towhich komekoji (moulded rice) and yeast is added to produce a brewed beverage with an alcohol content of 13-20%. Only the purest water sought throughout Japan is used in the production of sake. The numerous varietals of sake can be served either warm or cold. Japanese diners also enjoy sake as a complement to meals.
Rice that has koji-kin mould (Aspergillus oryzae) growing on it will act like maltand convert further rice (starch) to sugar.
To help people around the world familiarise themselves with the world of sake, we present Sake A to Z. This information is provided not only to guide readers in the pleasures of sake, but also as an invitation to Japan, the birthplace of this wonderful elixir.
This pamphlet is a compilation of WSET Sake Seminar and Tasting that has held every yearsince 2003, with the cooperation of Wine & Spirit Education Trust. JAL has led and developed the WSET R Sake Seminar and Tasting with sake breweries who participated. JAL as well as the sake breweries wish sincerely to express gratitude to WSET R .
03 - 05
Sake in Context
Defining Sake Sake on the Japanese Market
06 - 08
Assessing QualitySake -Tasting Tasting Process
Key Points in Sake-Tasting Constituents and Related Indices
09 - 11
12 - 15
Serving and Enjoying the Pleasures of Sake
Characteristics of Sake How to Enjoy Sake Pairing Taste Characteristics and Cuisine Storing Sake
16 - 17
18 - 21
Rice Water Komekoji Moulded rice Brewing Alcohol
22 - 28
Fermentation Brewing Main Production Methods
History Reference Materials Other Resources
Editor : Kimiko MASUDA Published by : Japan Airlines International Co.,Ltd. Copyright : Thanks to National Research Institute of Brewing Japan Sake Brewers Association SAKE WORLD, INC. John GAUNTNER Sake Service Institute KOKKI SHUZO Co.,Ltd. MASUDA SAKE COMPANY LTD. MIYASAKA BREWINGCOMPANY, LTD. Okunomatsu Sake Brewery Co.,Ltd. SHATA SHUZO Co.,Ltd. JAL Academy Co.,Ltd. Special thanks to David WRIGLEY MW AIWS of Wine & Spirit Education Trust
2007 Japan Airlines International Co.,Ltd. All rights reserved
Sake in Context
The Liquor Tax Law in Japan defines and regulates sake as follows. Sake varieties are defined as alcoholic beverages with an alcoholcontent of less than 22% made according to the following processes. a. Fermented and filtered alcoholic beverages made from rice, komekoji (moulded rice), and water.
Rice that has koji-kin mould (Aspergillus oryzae) growing on it will act like malt and convert further rice (starch) to sugar.
b. Fermented and filtered alcoholic beverages made from rice, komekoji (moulded rice), water, and sakelees or other substance authorized by Ministerial ordinance. (This ordinance stipulates that the total amount of other substance for use as primary ingredient be limited to no more than half the amount of rice [including komekoji] used in the product). c. Alcoholic beverages made by adding sake lees to sake and then filtering. Japan’s Liquor Tax Law strictly regulates the ingredients that may beused to produce sake, which must include rice, and stipulates that the final product must be filtered.
Sake on the Japanese Market
In a global comparison, the Japanese do not rank particularly high as alcohol consumers. In a 2003 comparison of per capita consumption of alcoholic beverages (100% alcohol content conversion), Japan came in 29th at 6.5 litres consumed, a figure roughly half that...