Chikurin Junmai Ginjo Namazake "Otoro"

Chikurin Junmai Ginjo Namazake "Otoro"

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Lovely, expressive florals on the nose of this beautiful Okayama namazake, brewed from organically-grown rice by members of Chikurin's cooperative-style brewery.

Sweet Queen Anne cherries, rose sugar, orange flower water, cherry blossom, mandarins in syrup, violet candies, and a sweet tropical note-- perhaps lychee or rambutan. The umami is super mellow and round, reminding me of macaroons: almond flour, meringue, coconut, all that good stuff. Tons of mid-palate richness and heft, but a good dose of acidity as well this year (2024) which makes it much more balanced and easier to drink (vs 2023.)

This brew is polished to junmai daiginjo levels (50%) and uses organic rice farmed by the cooperative farmers who belong to this rice-obsessed brewery. Organic rice yields are always substantially lower than conventionally farmed rice and require a real commitment to sustainable ethics.

REGION: Okayama
RICE: Home-grown Yamada Nishiki rice
SEIMAIBUAI: 50%
SMV: +0
ABV: 16%
YEAST: #1801
PRESSING: Yabuta
SHUBO: Sokujo

This sake is made by the Marumoto Brewery, a national cultural landmark. Nicknamed nousan sakagura, “The Farmers’ Brewery” because the farmers who grow the rice also brew the sake. An estate-bottled sake, Chikurin is made from 100% Yamada Nishiki, the most famous variety of sake rice. Named “Otoro” after a local river, and also a nod to its luxurious and creamy mouthfeel. Situated in the Chugoku Area, which includes Hiroshima to the west and Tottori to the north, Okayama is known as the “Land of Sunshine,” because of its sunny and dry weather. Okayama is a rich agricultural region, producing Japan’s most famous peaches, and great strawberries and grapes.