Tengu Doburoku

Tengu Doburoku

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Once upon a time in the deep forest of Musashi, there was Tengu demon who loved to drink.
"In the back of the forest, white and thick sake was made, and it was so beautiful that Tengu jumped up and down."
People called the sake "Tengu no Doburoku."
Doburoku is a full-bodied, truly unfiltered sake that retains the full character of the rice. Is it brewed farmer-style: in one batch, truly unfiltered, and in the case of Tengu no Doburoku is blended to achieve a uniform texture. 

The aroma initially is savory and rounded, with notes of earth, malted rice and shoyu. The flavor opens up with notes of honeysuckle, lily, sweet potato, roasted chestnut, a wisp of mochi and marshmallow sweetness. The finish is lightly tart and earthy, so the overall effect is more refreshing than heavy.

The most traditional farmers' sake snacks-- salt-roasted gingko nuts in Fall, pickled vegetables, shiokara, kinzanji miso with cucumber-- are the classic choice for doburoku. But you can also choose to play off the unctuous texture by pairing with cheeses (particularly soft, rich cheeses) and plump, rich, sweet seafood: like uni, unagi, amaebi, shirako, and other roe. The Marie Chiba special famously pairs doburoku with a gorgonzola-stuffed ham croquette. In other words, think: pure indulgence.

Stats

  • Brewery: Koyama Honke Shuzo
  • Brand:¬†Tengu no Doburoku
  • Est: 1808
  • Grade: Doburoku is not legally sake, and therefore ungraded!
  • Rice:¬†Fukutsuzo
  • Polishing: undisclosed
  • Yeast: Proprietary

Background:
A Love Letter to Doburoku 
Adapted from Sunflower Sake Club writeup, March 2022

In the mid-Edo period, Koyama Honke founder Matabee Koyamaya mastered sake brewing techniques in the famous producing regions Nada and Fushimi. Searching for his own brewery location, Koyamaya-san discovered good-quality springs in Shimogo, Sashiougi Village, Kita-adachi-gun, Musashi Province (present: Sashiougi, Nishi-ku, Saitama-shi) in 1808, and started brewing sake.

In Saitama Prefecture, the Arakawa River and the Tone River run, and there are 4 springs of famous waters included in the 100 best waters recorded in the Heisei period. Their water quality is said to be among the best in Japan.

During the winter brewing season, temperature fluctuates dramatically, which is very suited for sake brewing. Accordingly, high-quality sake has been produced in Saitama since the Edo period, and Saitama is always top-ranked in the shipment of sake.