Friday, August 21, 2009

Bunraku "Nihonjin No Wasuremono" Yamahai Junmai

Yes, it was the intriguing square, blue bottle that first caught my eye at a wine store in Portland. I picked up the bottle and then read the label, finding it was a Saké which I had not tasted before. Plus, I saw that it was a Yamahai, making it a rarer type of Saké. Thus I bought a couple bottles to check it out.

The Bunraku "Nihonjin No Wasuremono" ("Forgotten Japanese Spirit") Yamahai Junmai ($15.99/300ml) is made in the Saitama Prefecture. This Saké has an alcohol content of 15%-15% and a Saké Meter Value of +5, making it a dry Saké. It is a Yamahai, which means that the brewer uses native yeasts, those just floating in the air of the brewery. It is a very risky process so very few brewers make this style any more. Yet when they succeed, a Yamahai can be rich and acidic, much more like a red wine. They often too have a very earthy taste.

This Saké certainly had earthiness, both in its smell and taste. Its flavor also had some smokiness, steamed rice flavor and a bit of melon. All of the flavors blended together well, creating a unique taste which I found appealing. It had a fairly lengthy finish and I think this would be a great Saké to pair with a heartier dish, maybe a stew or game meat. This may not appeal to a newcomer to Saké because of its earthier taste but a Saké lover will likely enjoy this very much.


Deborah Parker Wong said...

Thanks for this helpful review. Your comparsion to wine made the flavor profile more apparent.


Unknown said...

Loved this review & thanks! Gonna try it tonight! Salud!