Q: Tell us about Shirataki Brewery.
Shirataki Brewery has been making Sake continuously for 160 years in Echigo Yuzawa of Niigata Prefecture, a place well-known for its heavy snowfall, approximately one hour away from Tokyo by Shinkansen. Using the clearest water from melted snow in the brewing process, its finished product is crystal clear Sake that is refreshing and easy to drink. The brewery’s Sake, Jozen Mizuno Gotoshi, has introduced customers to the Japanese Sake culture both in Japan and overseas.
Q: What type of Sake do you recommend for an Australian audience?
As Australia is one of the biggest wine manufacturers in the world, they may find Sake high in acidity with a crisp taste similar to white wine, whilst Sake that is mellow will bear similarity to red wine.
In terms of our products, we recommend Junmai Ginjo Jukusei no Jozen Mizuno Gotoshi (aged pure rice wine Jozen Mizuno Gotoshi) for the white wine lovers; and Junmai Noujun Uonuma (Pure rice wine Noujun Uonuma) for the red wine lovers.
Q: What sort of food in Australia do you recommend with Sake?
Together with wine, Australia is also famous for the manufacturing of dairy products. Australians in general consume a lot of dairy products, beef and lamb. As meat is rich in flavour, it will pair well with Sake high in acidity. We recommend Junmai Ginjo Jukusei no Jozen Mizuno Gotoshi (aged pure rice wine Jozen Mizuno Gotoshi) or Junmai Noujun Uonuma (Pure rice wine Noujun Uonuma).
On top of that, Fresh Mozzarella cheese will pair well with Junmai Ginjo Shu’s fruity fragrance. We also recommend our Junmai Ginjo Jozen Mizuno Gotoshi (pure rice wine Jozen Mizuno Gotoshi).
Q: As Japanese Sake is starting to get more popular in Australia, tell us about your marketing plan for the Australian market.
French, Italian and other cuisines have become common in Japan for a few decades now, however wines have only penetrated the average Japanese household market recently. Similarly, Japanese cuisine may have become one of the popular choices when Australians are dining out. However, Japanese Sake is yet to penetrate into the Australian average household market. In fact, there are still a large proportion of Australians who have never tasted Japanese Sake before.
Because of this, our goal is to increase the awareness of Japanese Sake outside Japanese restaurants and in general household, ultimately increasing our client base.
Q: What makes you want to sponsor the Japanese Festival?
When the company JAMS.TV approached us for sponsorship, we believed it would be a great opportunity for the Australian public to taste and try our Sake. This ties in well with our above mentioned marketing goal.
Q: What kind of initiatives have you planned for the Japanese Festival?
We are planning to provide more than simply Sake tasting. Our initial proposal is to provide a unique Japanese Sake experience. Our plan includes serving Sake that is scooped out with a bamboo Sake ladle from a Sake barrel, and poured into a traditional wooden Sake cup.
Q: What do you hope to see as s sponsor for the Japanese Festival?
We would like to see as many people as possible gathering around and enjoying the occasion along with us.
Q: What is a Matsuri – festival to you?
Although I am not sure if you are referring to Matsuri in general or in terms of this particular event, but from a Japanese point of view, I feel it is the weaving of daily gratitude through generations. It is our way of saying “a lot has happened this year and we are grateful to be once again here safely today”; it is our appreciation to our neighbours and our land; it is the expression of gratitude in form of an event – Matsuri.
Translator: Wendy Loo