I joined a Nabedana sake brewery tour at Kozaki in Chiba prefecture last week.
Nabedana's ancestors started brewing sake near Naritasan Temple more than 330 years ago.
Then they expanded their brewery production facilities, one of which was the Kozaki brewery that acquired a brewing licence in 1897. Since then it has been brewing sake at Kozaki, taking advantage of spacious land, abundance of high quality water, and good access to rice.
All are brand sake "Fudoh".
At the facade, a couple from South Dakota, US.
Do you know what this round object is?
It's a sugidama which is a large ornamental ball made with cedar leaves.
It announces that new sake has been made.
After watching a video that told us the history of Nabedana Inc. and the process of brewing sake, we went into the brewery, where a good aroma welcomed us.
This gentleman is taking a bite the steamed rice for Daiginjo, the superior quality of sake.
Each amount of rice is small which is 30％ remaining after polishing. You may say 'what a waste!'
Don't worry! The rice bran after polishing is used to make paste for pickles, spread on the soils as fertilizer, bake bread, cookies, and so on.
He's looking into the big tank, where moromi, or the mash is on the way to mature.
They make fermentation starter by adding Koji rice, steamed rice, sake yeast and lactic acid into purified water and keep it about 14 days, and keep adding more Koji rice, steamed rice, and purified water in 3 steps to make moromi.
Sake is bottled after pressing moromi to get clear sake, pasteurizing it at 65 °C. And their new machine functions lowering the heat to 30 °C at the time of bottling.
This is a photo taken in the backyard after finishing the tour.
After learning how to make sake, it's time for sake tasting!
He was pleased to have a tasting of different sake and found one best
suited for his preference.
We drove to a roadside market "fermentation town at Kozaki", where they sell fermented food products from Chiba as well as from other prefectures.
For further information about the brewery, please access Nabedana Inc.