Brewed by Takasago Shuzo Sake Co.
Style: Saké - Daiginjo
Asahikawa-shi, Hokkaido Prefecture, Japan
Serve in Guinomi, Masu, Ochoko


on tap


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RATINGS: 81   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.81/5   EST. CALORIES: 468   ABV: 15.6%
Rice: Yamada Nishiki
Nihonshu-do: +3
Seimaibuai: 50%
Notable Facts: Each year, after the temperature drops below 14 fahrenheit, they build an Ice Dome outside near the main kura building. It is basically an igloo inside of which the temperature stays about 28 F, with 90% humidity and no wind The low temperature means "nasty bacteria" cannot survive, and it allows them to make clean, pure, ultra-premium saké. Additionally, they separate the clear saké from the fermenting rice lees not by pressing, but rather by putting it into canvas bags and allowing the saké to drip out slowly overnight, with no pressure at all applied to the mash. The Cadillac of Daiginjo sake is Shizuku-style sake, the equivalent of wine made from free-run juice.

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Ungstrup (37601) - Citizen of the universe, DENMARK - APR 19, 2012
Bottled. A light yellow sake. The aroma has notes of rice and cedar wood. The flavor is sweet with notes of alcohol, rice, fruits, and some cedar wood, leading to a alcoholic finish.

Papsoe (25063) - Frederiksberg, DENMARK - APR 19, 2012
Bottle 30 cl. Courtesy of Doodler. Pours a clear golden with a vague yellowish tint. Sweet rice aroma, with a slightly spicy touch. Rich body, sweet with a spicy touch, fennel or licorice. Warming alcohol finish. Delicious if not overly complex. 190412

Ernest (7695) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - MAR 20, 2012
Bottle (apparent bottling date is "07.11"). No head (still). Body is almost colorless (very faint yellow). Aroma is light notes of rice paste, alcohol, melon rind. Flavor is moderately to heavily sweet, lightly to moderately acidic. Finish is lightly to moderately sweet, lightly to moderately acidic, lightly bitter. Medium body, watery/silky texture, no carbonation, moderately to heavily alcoholic, lightly astringent. Wow. Just...well...not much of anything. I think the ratings for the Ginjo from this brewer (Ice Dome) might be telling...if this were some sort of holy grail of brewers, that one should surely get scores mostly in the mid 3’s (at least), no? This seems to be a hype monster that people almost fear to rate normally, due to the price and rating trend. I wanted to love it too, and man, I sure was excited! I made sure I waited until I’d tried a lot of Daiginjo, Ginjo, and Junmai so I had a frame of reference. But...uh...either I got the most dull bottle on the planet or it really is just as ordinary as Ice Dome. I would honestly say that the vast bulk of plain Ginjo I have tried has been more interesting and enjoyable. This is better than most Junmai I’ve had, but that’s not saying much for being $35 for a 30cL bottle (and I’ve only paid $87.50 or more for a 75cL bottle of wine a couple of times, so trying this was quite the test of faith, almost entirely because of RateBeer). The truth is that the aroma doesn’t offer much of anything...this is kinda like vodka (at lower strength), where there’s only wisps of aromatics, and those wisps are not the sorts of things that make me giggle with delight...rice/grain, alcohol, and melon rind...that’s pretty much it, anything else is subconscious. Is it clean? Yeah, sure, I don’t get any fusels or other off notes out of it, but fuck me if there’s anything to truly *entice* either. Moon on the Water, Wandering Poet, Bride of the Fox, Southern Beauty, you can just about throw a rock and hit a Ginjo with more aromatic vibrancy and depth than this. In the mouth it’s sweeter than most Ginjo, but certainly not approaching cloying or fatiguing. Pretty strong alcohol, but about the amount of burn you might expect from something that’s close to 16%. I dunno, I spent a good hour reviewing this, and all I see are emperor’s clothes. I’m certainly not going against the grain for the sake of it...this sample is honestly about as bog standard as sake gets. Pearls before swine? Maybe, I’ll make no claims to being a sake expert...maybe less is *supposed* to be more. All I can say is that I like sakes with aromatic intrigue and better sweet/acid balance (and a bit more tannins would help too). I really don’t care if it’s brewed in an igloo or somebody’s mom’s basement.

hopscotch (11101) - Vero Beach, Florida, USA - JAN 18, 2012
Bottle… Pours crystal clear and colorless with few legs, but those produced are thick and meaty. There’s a lot of floral and fruity stuff going on in the bouquet, but fennel is definitely the star of the olfactory show. Full-bodied with an oily mouthfeel and no carbonation. The flavor is mostly smooth - just a touch boozy ; grainy and lightly fruity – pear. Finishes lightly bitter and very warming. Bottle courtesy of landhoney!

dchmela (3064) - Orlando, Florida, USA - AUG 19, 2011
Thanks to Mike for the bottle. Pours clear with just a hint of a yellow tinge. Fabulously clean aroma, rose petals, pear and cucumber all coming through. absolutely no harshness at all. Flavor continues with clean clear taste, almost like rose water with hints of rice and fruit. There is absolutely no hint of alcohol and the fruits are just hinted at. just an outstanding sake.

MadIndian (2743) - Levittown, Pennsylvania, USA - JUL 8, 2011
Gift from Sj. Clear pour with yellow hue. Aromas of fruit and lemon. Taste of peaches maybe some pair, rice and bread. Hard for me to rate these sake’s.

Doodler (318) - Denver, Colorado, USA - OCT 31, 2010
While i often enjoy a good sake with my wife, the is my first attempt at rating one, so why not start with the Cadillac of Sake? Pick up a small bottle for $35,(ouch) so for the price, like others, I probably won’t be developing a premium Sake habit any time soon. Goes well with some sashimi we picked up at Whole Foods, so will limit this to Sushi restaurants and food fare for pairing. Pours clearand clean, with a touch of yellow hues. Nice floral and rice aromas. Really opens up as it warms, with some apple and pear sweetness. Peppery finish that is dry and warming. The alcohol was warming but pretty subdued for me, which is unusual for most sakes i’ve had. Overall, this was very tasty and I was glad to try it. I can see why it is the top rated Sake on the site.

thedm (6184) - Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA - SEP 22, 2009
This bottled sake from a bottle shop poured a very small sized head of frothy fine to medium sized clear colored bubbles that were quickly diminishing and left behind a transparent uncarbonated light yellow hued body. The mild aroma was sweet and polished rice. The mouth feel was weakly tingly at the start and strongly tingly at the finish with a biting vinous alcohol aftertaste. The strong flavor contained notes of sweet alcohol and polished rice. An OK brew just nothing special.

douglas88 (9187) - Portland, Oregon, USA - SEP 14, 2009
Another awesome bottle thanks to Eric. Pours a clear watery mixture. The aroma is great; smooth pears and fruit, sweet fruitiness. The flavor is very smooth despite the abv; very clean and smooth flavors of light pear, other fruits, some sweeter aspects, very easygoing and yet very flavorful. Again, I’ll repeat my Sake disclaimer; I know next to nothing about these interesting crafts, but this was a nice drink.

theisti (4126) - Kansas, USA - JUL 20, 2009
300 ml bottle from beastiefan2k. 02,08 stamped on bottle. Pour is perfectly clear pale yellow gold. Shines like jewelry. Decent legs form on the glass during the swirl. Aroma of floral soft rice, with a faint pineapple citrus. Some apple, some pear - very soft and delicate. Taste is initially soft rice fruitiness, followed quickly by a bit of an edgy alcohol heat, followed again by the floral sweetness of the nose. The flavors transitioned really smoothly from one to the next. Palate is soft and clean, syrupy - coats the mouth beautifully, yet almost feels like its gliding down your throat. Really no residual alcohol heat. I have laughably limited knowledge of Sake, but quite liked this one. Not sure I will rush out to explore more, but will happily keep an eye open. As I had more of this, I just kept liking it more. Thanks for giving me a chance to try this one, Eugene.

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