With unpredictable demand on 300mls, I am downsizing supply, and that includes this (still very fresh) 2022 bottling of Niwa no Uguisu Junmai Daiginjo. Tasting elegant, floral, and understated-- this little fella will make for a very pleasant afternoon soiree.
Fruity, juicy, and very gentle. Has a bright and lively apple-like aroma, and a casual, lingering sweetness that harmonizes perfectly with the soft and smooth flavor. This sake is dialed down for people who prefer something delicate, subtle and soft, but no less impressive.
- Region: Fukuoka
- Rice: Yamadanishiki, Yume Ikkon
- Polishing: 50%
- Yeast: House
- SMV: +2
The largest river in the Kyushu region of Japan is the Chikugogawa. The abundance of pure, clean water in the Chikugo region is said to have given birth to one of the three largest sake-brewing regions in Japan; many breweries were born there. The brewer of Niwa no Uguisu (aka. “Garden's Nightingale”) is Yamaguchi Shuzojo: located in northern Chikugo. The very first brewers of Yamaguchi Shuzojo loved to watch the Japanese nightingales in the garden playing in the water and drinking in the gardens. When the 6th generation family head Yamaguchi Risuke saw this, he made the decision to brew sake using that water.
The Nightingale is colored and positioned differently on every one of the Kura’s 17-20 annually-released sake. Tetsuo Yamaguchi (11th generation) explains “The first generation of sake brewers from my family enjoyed listening to the birds while drinking sake.” The brewery’s motto for their sake is: food comes first; sake comes second. When asked what makes Niwa No Uguisu so special, Tetsuo-san replied, “I can list three things that differentiate us from other breweries: rice, water and people.”