日本酒を語る

Talk about sake

2020.11.05

Knowledge

Wakamizu

According to the Aichi Sake Brewing Association, sake brewing in Aichi Prefecture has already started from as early as the beginning of 8th century. The Kojiki and Nihon Shoki, the old records of Japanese history, depict the scene where oosakazuki (sake presented to Emperor) was presented to the legendary prince Yamato Takeru at Atsuta, Aichi. In such a historical prefecture, a sake rice called Wakamizu was born. With a hope to make people enjoy sake using rice made in Aichi, the Aichi Agricultural Research Center developed a new sake rice in 1983 by crossbreeding Gohyakumangoku (Niigata Prefecture) with A-kei Sake 101. When this sake rice came to be approved as a recommended variety of Aichi, it was named and registered as Wakamizu in 1985, with a beautiful and auspicious name representing water scooped on the early morning of New Year’s Day to be offered to God. Having a lower height and high resistance to lodging, it is easier to grow in plains. In 1995, the planted area of Wakamizu in Aichi expanded up to 289 hectares. At one time the production decreased, however, in recent years, local producers and breweries who are committed to local production for local consumption have been working together to raise the production. As the small and soft grain makes it difficult to be polished at a polishing ratio of 50% or less, Wakamizu is said to bring out full potential of the rice’s umami and rich flavor when used for junmaishu rather than ginjoshu. For ginjoshu, they crossbred Wakamizu and Yamadanishiki (Hyogo Prefecture) and created Yumeginga (the variety registered in 2012) which allows the production in the plains and a lower polishing ratio. Just like Wakamizu, the rich aroma and smooth and refreshing taste are receiving attention of sake breweries and those involved.(Photo by :Kamisugi Shuzou Co.,Ltd)