1) Two weeks ago, I mentioned that a new Sake brewery, the Ontario Spring Water Sake Company, would be starting in the Spring in Toronto. Well the EyeWeekly has another article about this new brewery, with even more information. The article is an interview with Kazuto Hayashi, the General Manager, and it appears the brewery is scheduled to open in April. I hope so, as I will be in the region in May and would love to visit. They plan to produce a Junmai sake, so I am eager to see what develops. Check out the article for more details.
2) There is good news in the Sake industry, as the Japanese Herald reports that Sake exports were at an all-time high in November 2010. Statistics show that from January to November 2010, Japan exported about 12,223 kiloliters of sake, higher than the previous one-year record of 12,151 in 2008. Although exports still constitute only a small percentage of all sake sales, it is still good news for Japan, which is making efforts to expand their export marketing.
3) Q Restaurant is a new hot pot and sushi place in Chinatown. I attended a special opening there, and really enjoyed the hot pot, especially one of the spicy broths. Plus, I was pleased to see they carried the Bunraku Nihonjin No Wasuremeno Yamahai Junmai, a delicious and interesting sake, which has some earthiness to it. I paired very well with the spicy hot pot. Q carries several others sakes, including two sparkling sakes and a nigori.
They also now are serving four sake cocktails, none of which I have tried yet, including:
Q-tini ($12): A fusion of Wasabi Sake Vodka, Quintessential Gin and Domaine de Canton. Ice cold and straight up with pickled ginger.
Tiger Lotus ($12): 3 Olives Mango and Rangtang Vodkas combined with sake, and orange and mango juices, on top of a thin layer of Chambord.
Dragon Lotus ($12): Pomegranate and Passion fruit vodkas merge with sake and guava juice on top of a thin layer of Midori.
Feng Shui Martini ($15): Magellan Gin, Kai Lychee Vodka, Hypnotiq and sake mixed with lychee juice.