日本酒を語る

日本酒を語る

2017.08.21

用語系コラム

吟醸酒の条件は精米歩合だけじゃない。で、吟醸造りって?

As you can find the classification of “specially designated sake” or ”Premium Sake” at the explanatory tables. It is the rice polishing rate of lower than 60% , And Necessary to use over 15% koji rice and ginjo zukuri. They describe about that as below, “Ginjo zukuri means the process of using low seimai-buai rice and fermenting at a low temperature to create the characteristic fragrance.” Ginjo-shu is made at a rice polishing ratio below 60%, so more than 40% of the rice outer layer is removed. After the rice is carefully washed not to be damaged, it is soaked to attain a certain water content and the time is measured by using a stop watch (this process is called gentei-kyusui (limited water absorption)). For koji making, it seems that kojibuta (shallow tray-like boxes ) is often used to make koji carefully. In the shikomi process of junmai-shu and futsu-shu (non-premium sake) made from a sokujo starter culture, moromi is maintained at temperatures between 15C and17C degrees, and becomes sake in 20-25 days. As for ginjo-shu brewing, saccharification and fermentation are done very slowly at a lower temperature of about 10C degrees, which is the lowest temperature at which yeast come alive and activate. This is why ginjo-shu is brewed in the coldest season of the year from the end of January until February. Also, a less-stressful pressing is often adopted for ginjo-shu brewing, such as a bag-hanging style or so-called fune-shibori.

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最近は香りの少ないものも増えていますが、吟醸香と呼ばれるフルーティな香りも特徴の一つです。種類や強によっては好き嫌いも分かれますが、お米という穀物から作られた飲料が放つこの香りは、初めて出合う人たちにとって想像を超えたもの言われ、日本酒から感じ取る神秘さの大きな要因となっているようです。

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