Thursday, December 9, 2010

Sake brewed in the United Sates Part 3, 続続アメリカで醸造されているお酒

Another decent sake, Gekkeikan "Black and Gold"!

After tasting "G Sake", we hit another good one. This is from Gekkeikan USA and is Junmai Ginjou. Although this one is not as complex as "G sake" and will not compete with high-end premium sake, this is surprisingly good and pleasant.

The nose has faint cooked rice note but pleasant. From this nose, I was expecting the usual overly yeasty taste but the palate is clean with a fruity note (melon?) and a hint of sweetness. It gives a nice pleasant mouth feel. Finish is rather short. This is not an overly complex or sophisticated sake (I do not think this was meant to be that) but very drinkable and pleasant. This will not make it to our top choices but this is a good everyday sake and, for sure, better than "Haiku". With some good "Otsumami" drinking snacks, this sake is an excellent down-to-earth sake to enjoy, just perfect for Izakaya (even the traditional "tokkuri" 徳利 sake container-shaped bottle).

After tasting "G sake" and "Black and Gold", I am seeing some parallel to "the battle of French vs. American wines" here. In a few years, some of the American brewed sake may win in a blind tasting against Japanese sake, which, thereafter, may be known as  "the judgement of Tokyo".  Mark my words. Watch out "Fudo" 不動 and "Juyondai" 十四代! Hope I can say in the near future, "Remember I said that way back when". (Probably NOT!)


Jon said...

My mother will be happy to see this series since she has asked several times for recommended sake in the US. We went to the store together, but I was lost with even their limited selection. All of the different bottle shapes and labels are very confusing to a Japan-based sake drinker!

You might mention 不老線 has the same sort of flavor as the two Japanese brands in question. I think of it as umami, but no one has explained it well to me yet.

Martiemol said...

Thanks from Jon's Mom
We will go to the local store tomorrow and see if we can find the one you recommended. We were quite spoiled when Jon came to NJ and brought some really great Japanese sake! Thank you!!

Uncle N said...

Jon, "G" sake definitely has "umami" similar to the sakes you mentioned. I would also call it "complex" flavor. Our experience with good Japanese sake is limited since I did not particularly like sake when I lived in Japan and the "jizake" boom happened after I left.
Martiemol, it may be difficult to find these two sakes particularly "G sake" in a store. I mail ordered them. But the mail order place was in NJ so you may have better luck. Please let me know if you like these sakes.