Sake & Surf
What does sake have to do with surfing? Well, they both give a great 'high'. Especially when that sake is Koshigoi sake located in Chiba which is one of the best surf areas in Japan.
Conveniently located around 1 1/2 hours from Tokyo it's Mecca is Katsuura located on the coast. Not far from Katsuura is the sake shuzo (brewery) of Koshigoi. You can't miss it with it's tall chimney which in the old days was used for steaming rice to be used in the initial stage of making sake.
Ring ahead and you may get a tour from Sammy san or his wife Nao. What he has which not many other sake shuzo's have is his own rice milling machine. This enables him to control the 'semaibuai' or rice poilishing percentage of the rice. It also lets them control the speed which is crucial so that the rice doesn't crack instead of be polished down. Nao san told us that a 40% polish rate to get the rice to ginjo grade can take 18 hours and to get to daiginjo stage is much longer.
50% ploushing seems to be the limit and lathough rice can be polished more that that most toji agree that the law of diminishing returns kick in and most highly polished rice sakes are perhaps more to do with marketing than with good sake.
There's nothing quite like enjoying a cool junmai ginjo from Koshigoi after a good day's surfing. Try the Fusanomai Junmai Ginjo. It uses a special rice native to the region of Chiba called surprisingly 'fusanomai' and has a lovely light fruity taste.
If you are into premium sake then the Koshigoi Daiginjo is a multi award winning sake that has a small amount of maker's alcohol added just before the moromi is pressed, This imparts a lighter flavour with a more perfumed noe and is prized highly in elite circles (served in business class on ANA flights).
We hope you have enjoyed our article and please remember that if you want to buy sake in Sydney Melbourne Perth or anywhere in Australia please look at our web site with a great selection of sake at affordable prices.
From JW Web magazine.
"The east coast of the Boso Peninsula, Chiba Prefecture has several great surf spots such as Ichinomiya, Onjuku and Kujukuri. The beaches in Kamogawa City (Tojo Beach, Maehara Beach, etc) are specially recommended for surfers who are in intermediate to advanced level. The waves are pretty big and can be enjoyed for long term. Many professional surfers come here to practice."