Try: Taste the Difference: Koshigoi-Umeshu/Yuzushu


Chiba is relatively close to Tokyo, being on the coast south east. Koshigoi is located in the hills near Katsuura. Established around 1830, Koshigoi mainly produce for local supply only. Yoshino san, the kuramoto, employs a master Toji from Iwate to brew his sake in a traditional hand made method. Fusanomai and Yamadanishiki rice are used. Yoshino san is very particular about the quality of the milling of the rice.

Seimaibuai or, polishing rate is one of the biggest factors in quality of sake. Most shuzos buy in rice already polished but Yoshino san has invested at considerable expense in his own polishing machine which gives him ultimate control (even if he only uses it a few months each year). The junmai is milled in 8 hours but the president’s wife Nao told us that ginjo takes 18 hours and the daiginjo even more. But they maintain this slow milling and indeed are pleased to be in control of the process as it produces a high quality product. There is no cracking of the rice from heat as might happen if it was polished too quickly.

Slowly and properly is the method they prefer. Koshigoi also produces two uncommon nihonshu, a koshu and a ‘straight’ (non junmai) nationally awarded daiginjo. The daiginjo has a tiny amount of jozo maker’s alcohol to enhance the aroma. The koshu is very rare in that it has been aged since 1987, having a caramel aroma, with hints of honey, dried fruits, molasses and soy, and a slight bitter taste unique to koshu sakes.

The Toji is the one who decides how to deal with all kinds of conditions and changes in sake brewing and how to maintain the same quality and taste. At Yoshino Sake Brewery, since 2008, Hideo Segawa, who has inherited the techniques of Nanbu Toji, who is counted as one of Japan's top three Toji, has taken on this role. Segawa Toji's high level of technical ability is supported by the awards and awards he has received at the Sake Appraisal. Speak softly and never be arrogant. Segawa Toji strictly protects the tradition and taste of hand-made sake. His conviction and passion are poured into his deep insight and inquisitive mind, humility and sincere attitude toward "ideal sake brewing."

Koshigoi has been making sake since 1830 in 2009 they took on a new challenge and made their first umeshu liqueur using local agricultural products. What got them started was the fact that due to the aging of local farmers, the number of unmanaged and neglected plum trees is increasing. It was then that they decided they were going to make plum wine.

The Katsuura Chamber of Commerce and Industry introduced them to producers and farmers, and they recommended a national resource utilisation project. Until then, they had not been involved in the national support system, but they saw it as an opportunity to expand their offering and diversify. In order to make the best use of the natural taste and aroma of the ingredients, they experimented with a variety of sake bases. When we commercialised a small amount and sold it as a test, it was very well received by their customers and as the reputation spread through word of mouth, and plum wine fans began to take root, there were more requests for umeshu with less sweetness.

It was equally well received. As they possessed their own sake rice milling machine producing superior ginjo grade sake (40% polish) to use as their base material which gives the resultant umeshu a smoother finish.

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Koshigoi Ginjo Jikomi Plum Wine 720ml

Koshigoi Yuzushu (Yuzu Party) 720ml


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