Niigata Prefecture Unveils Rurouni Kenshin Collaboration Sake
Rurouni Kenshin is one of the most popular anime and manga series around the world, hitting the scene in Japan back in 1994. Original manga author Nobuhiro Watsuki spent most of his childhood in Nagaoka, Niigata prefecture, an area known throughout the country for its delicious rice. Harasho, a liquor store in Nagaoka, has announced a new collection of Rurouni Kenshin-themed sake to celebrate the series.
The Rurouni Kenshin manga series was originally serialized in Weekly Shonen Jump from 1994 until 1999. The sequel, Rurouni Kenshin: The Hokkaido Arc, is currently ongoing in Jump Square. The series has been a smash hit, selling over 72 million copies and inspiring both animated and live-action film adaptations and an anime series.
The sake will be produced at three distilleries in Nagaoka city, and each of the three will feature unique characteristics. Each label features imagery from the manga series and would make the perfect gift for fans (as long as they are of age!)
Rurouni Kenshin x Niigata Sake Series
Fukusen Natural Sake: ¥1,350
Koshino Hakugan Ginjo Sake: ¥1,500
Ofuku Shuzo Ginjo Sake with No Added Alcohol: ¥1,800
Special 3-bottle Set: ¥4,650
Number of Bottles Released: 2,000 of each type, special 3-bottle sets available until sold out
Preorders Now Open
Release Date: December 1, 2021
Where to Buy:
Online Store: https://echigo.sake-harasho.com/
Liquor stores part of the Echigo Meimon Collective
Major tourist facilities in Niigata Prefecture
Tiger & Bunny 2 Sparkling Sake Available Just in Time for Christmas and New Year’s
The online sake shop KURAND is now selling TIGER & BARNABY SPARKLING, a special sparkling sake made in collaboration with the TIGER & BUNNY 2 anime series.
TIGER & BARNABY SPARKLING is a sparkling sake that will surprise customers with its delicate bubbles and light flavor. The label features an outline of the city of Sternbild, the setting of TIGER & BUNNY, and each bottle will be delivered in a decorated box. This is perfect for Christmas and New Year’s celebrations!
Those who purchase TIGER & BARNABY SPARKLING will receive a TIGER & BARNABY Champagne Stopper as a gift. The bubbliness of this sake is sure to impress, so kick back and relax with friends and family this holiday season with a few glasses of this limited-edition goodness.
TIGER & BARNABY SPARKLING
Order Period: November 4 – November 17 at 16:59
*Orders will be delivered by Christmas
Second Order Period: November 17 at 17:00~
*Orders will be delivered during or after January 2023
(Bottles available for Christmas are only available in limited quantities. Those ordering bottles for a January 2023 delivery should be aware that items are only available to order while supplies last.)
Price: ¥8,600 (Tax Included)
New Sake ‘&Soda’ Made Exclusively to be Mixed with Soda Water
29.September.2022 | FOOD
Shiragiku Sake Brewery will release a special sake made exclusively to mix with soda water on October 1, 2022. The beverage will be available in Okayama Prefecture.
The company’s interest in creating a new sake culture led them to develop &Soda, a delicious sake made to be mixed with soda. This may be helpful for those who don’t know much about sake, or who may feel intimidated by the many different types. Being able to mix it with soda will make sake drinking feel more casual.
Sake Made Exclusively for Mixing with Soda Water, ‘&Soda’
“Many people may like to mix sake with soda water or drink it on the rocks. By doing this, however, a nice sake may lose its flavor, and the drinker might be wasting a nice sake for the sake of a more easy-drinking beverage. &Soda was made exclusively to be mixed. Using Asahi Rice, a specialty in Okayama Prefecture, and water from the brewery, we’ve created a sake that has the proper aroma and sweetness. These characteristics will come through even after being mixed! The alcohol content has been increased to 18 percent, and the package will make the product easy to find and understand,” a statement from the brewery reads.
For more information on how to enjoy &Soda, please see the special website below!
Sake Made Exclusively for Mixing with Soda Water, ‘&Soda’
Release Date: October 1, 2022
Official Site: http://www.andsoda.jp/
Japan’s Largest Sake Event TOKYO SAKE FESTIVAL to be Held in Shinjuku in October
Japan’s largest sake event, TOKYO SAKE FESTIVAL 2022, will run from October 4 until October 6 at the Shinjuku Sumitomo Building’s Triangle Square.
The event’s aim is to make sake more mainstream around the world, with the first festival taking place in 2020. Tokyo Sake Festival blends sake with entertainment, showing off the very best of Japanese culture to those who may be new to craft sake. For the third year, former NMB48 member Yui Takano will serve as ambassador. Takano is known for leaving her idol career to manage the sake specialty store Yui Sake Shop.
Tokyo Sake Festival 2022 is bringing together forty carefully selected sake breweries from around Japan, including Inoue Seikichi, winner of the Champion Sake award at IWC 2022. Tonoike Sake Brewery, winner of Kura Master 2022’s President’s Award, will also be in attendance. The full lineup can be found on the official website.
Popular influencers and artists from Raphael to BOYS AND MEN and Ukon Takafuji will take the stage during the event, so be sure to swing by if you’re a fan of Japanese spirits!
TOKYO SAKE FESTIVAL 2022
October 4: Part 1 13:30-16:30 / Part 2 18:00-21:00
October 5: Part 1 13:30-16:30 / Part 2 18:00-21:00
October 6: 16:00-19:00
Venue: Shinjuku Sumitomo Building Triangle Square
(2-6-1 Nishishinjuku, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo)
Buy Tickets/Details: https://tokyosakefestival.bitfan.id/
Teppanyaki and Yakiniku Restaurant Honten Yamashina Opens in Ginza
On July 18, the upscale teppanyaki and yakiniku restaurant Honten Yamashina opened a new location in Ginza! The hybrid restaurant has taken over the entire top floor of GINZA PLACE, which is directly connected to Ginza Station. Overlooking the Ginza 4-chome intersection, it’s a gorgeous place to enjoy some authentic Japanese cuisine.
Honten Yamashina mainly uses fully-matured Omi beef, the highest grade available among Shiga Prefecture’s top-tier beef, from Okazaki Farm. The cows are allowed to fatten for a considerable amount of time and live stress-free lives for over 40 months. Less than 1% of all Wagyu cattle are shipped after 24 months of age, and this delectable meat is characterized by its sharp taste and fattiness.
Luxurious Wagyu and Sea Urchin Sushi
Early Summer Plate to Enjoy with Seasonal Flowers
Selected Extra-thick Beef Tongue Steak Made with Refined Attention to Detail
Grilled Spiny Lobster Made on a Charcoal Grill
The Playful Yamashina Wagyu Slider
Melt-in-your-mouth Sweet Amala Tomato (Vegetable of the Day)
Hand-selected Omi Beef Steak
Guests can enjoy authentic Japanese teppanyaki cuisine with a modern twist. While sitting at the contour, visitors will enjoy a live performance by Taku Osada, a teppanyaki chef with over 20 years of experience.
The wide variety of meat can be enjoyed in a number of different ways, whether it be raw, grilled, stewed, or properly cooked. From tongue and rump to filet and sirloin, you won’t leave hungry. Visitors can also enjoy seafood and seasonal Japanese vegetables along with their meat, and the flowers and leaves that adorn each plate will change depending on the time of year.
In addition to rare teppanyaki dishes like skirt steak and 3cm-thick beef tongue, Honten Yamashina also offers some playful dishes such as sliders. As the temperature differs on different parts of the steel cooking plate, each item can be cooked to a temperature that maximizes its specific flavor. Honten Yamashina also has a massive cellar housin over 1,000 bottles of wine and hard-to-find spirits.
For those looking for a more private experience, guests can enjoy yakiniku in a completely separate room. Each private room has a grill that will cook meat to the perfect temperature, and only at Honten Yamashina can you enjoy fully-matured Omi beef. The signature cutlet sandwich is made with chateaubriand cooked at a low temperature and deep-fried in a thin batter, then served on crispy bread with a soft, fluffy interior.
Teppanyaki and yakiniku are typically thought of as meat-based dishes, but the restaurant can accommodate vegetarian guests if contacted in advance.
When Japan opens up to tourism, will you be visiting this incredible restaurant in the heart of Tokyo?
Address: GINZA PLACE 11F (5-8-1 Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo)
Official Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/honten_yamashina/
Long-Established Sake Brewery in Yamagata Prefecture Helps Create SAKE COLA
13.July.2022 | FOOD
Aiming to create a new kind of drinking culture, Aika in Gunma Prefecture has started preorders for SAKE COLA, a new cola liquor, on the crowdfunding site Makuake.
People love cola for its strong carbonation, sweetness, and distinctive spicy flavor. SAKE COLA has a complex, multi-layered aroma and refreshing sweetness offering a unique taste that no one has tasted before.
In creating SAKE COLA, the company attempted to keep the authentic sweetness of sake. To this end, they decided to work with Rokkasen, a long-established sake brewery in Yamagata.
Rokkasen’s authentic rice-based shochu Goujoppari is brewed in the cold like sake and distilled like a ginjo sake. It has a beautiful citrus aroma and tastes similar in sweetness despite having zero sugar.
Using Goujoppari as a base, malted rice is used to produce a mild, natural sweetness, and the spices added to the drink meld with the citrus scent to create a flavor defying imagination.
The flavor and aroma of SAKE COLA spread in the mouth, with the spices and herbs lingering on the tongue. The spices were mixed by Hayashi Oki, who studied in Alsace, France before working as a pastry chef at one of Tokyo’s top patisseries.
Mace, the key spice, is characterized by its sweet and somewhat pungent aroma. It’s used to recreate the caramelized taste that is found in most cola.
Along with that, tonka beans, containing the natural sweeteners Vanillin and Coumarin, were blended into the mix to create a soft, lingering flavor. Customers are sure to enjoy it from the first sip to the last.
SAKE COLA can be enjoyed at any time. It’s perfect for enjoying as an aperitif, and it can also be enjoyed with a meal, like beer or wine.
Like whiskey, it can also be enjoyed while relaxing after a meal. At Christmas time, it can be added to warm red wine or served as an affogato with ice cream and a splash of liqueur. How would you like to try this unique creation?
The Japanese Craft Sake Cola
Anime Series Chibi Maruko-chan Inspires New Sake from Hatsukame Brewery in Shizuoka
Last year, Hatsukame Sake Brewery, a staple in Shizuoka Prefecture, released a collaborative special edition sake featuring Papa Hiroshi from the anime series Chibi Maruko-chan. The collab makes sense, as the anime series takes place in Shizuoka Prefecture. Bottles sold out incredibly fast, so it’s no wonder that the brewery has now opened orders for the 2022 batch! The special products will be available on June 4, just in time for Father’s Day. Customers can choose from the Junmai Ginjo or Junmai Daiginjo varieties.
Junmai Ginjo Papa Hiroshi Vintage 2022
Junmai Daiginjo Papa Hiroshi Vintage 2022
The Junmai Ginjo Papa Hiroshi Vintage 2022 was made with water, rice, and yeast from Shizuoka, where the series takes place. With a refreshing aroma and a gentle sweetness derived from the Homarefuji rice, the flavor is sure to arouse your palate!
The original label featured on the bottle shows Papa Hiroshi enjoying local sake with tuna sashimi from Shizuoka with Mt. Fuji in the background. All bottles will come with a paper box featuring a similar design. The turtle on the label is the symbol of Hatsukame Brewing! It’s recommended that customers drink their sake with local tuna–it’s the perfect combination.
The Daiginjo variety is made from rare Aiyama rice, known as the ‘Diamond of Sake Rice.’ Polished and carefully prepared by hand, the aroma of the sake is reminiscent of tropical fruits. The final product has a rich sweetness.
Last year’s label showed Papa Hiroshi in a Kimono watching the first sunrise over Mt. Fuji. Be sure to grab a bottle to experience the taste of Shizuoka! Only 223 bottles will be available, so be quick!
©さくらプロダクション/日本アニメーション ©Hatsukame Sake Brewery Co., Ltd. ©Nexus Co., Ltd.
Junmai Daiginjo Papa Hiroshi Vintage 2022
Now available to order
Release Date: June 4, 2022 *After the release date, orders will be shipped within 3 weeks from the order date.
Where to Buy: Saketsunagi Online Shop https://saketsunagi.base.shop
Limited Edition Sake Released Alongside NFT Art to Share the Value of Japanese Spirits with the World
Two incredible new Junmai Daiginjo bottles, the highest-quality sake, have been released in limited quantities. Hitou ASCENDING and Touka ILLUMINATING were made by sustainable means and incorporate NFT art to share the process of sake creation with the world.
While sake companies keep traditional Japanese production methods alive, some are seeking to solve problems in the sake industry by turning to current technology, like the blockchain and NFTs. In this age of convenience and automation, this particular sake maker is aiming to show the true value and authenticity of Japanese craftsmanship to the rest of the world.
Certain types of sake can only be made and enjoyed at certain times of the year, as they are not suitable for storage at room temperature and can only be consumed for a brief period to get the best taste. Many sake fans around the world might not be aware of this, so the new NFT collaboration aims to educate!
The bottles contain unique ukiyo-e NFT art prints of a dragon and phoenix on the bottle, respectively. Those who purchase a bottle will also find the year of production and bottle number etched onto the glass with lacquer. Be sure to keep the bottle even after the delicious sake is gone!
Rice / Tobe Rice
In Tokamachi, Niigata Prefecture, farmers have been cultivating this unique brand of Koshihikari rice without the help of pesticides or fertilizers for over two decades. The rice is called the best in all of Japan, and one-third of its yield is used to make sake.
Water / Pure Groundwater
The Japan Median Tectonic Line, also known as the ‘Dragon’s Vein,’ is a massive fault line that is home to numerous sacred sites, including Suwa Grand Shrine, Toyokawa Inari Shrine, Tenkawa Benzaiten Shrine, Ise Grand Shrine, and the Koyasan Mountain. The groundwater found here is some of the purest found in Japan and flows from the Bungui Pass in Ina, Nagano Prefecture. The pass has been featured in many publications as one of the most famous power spots in Japan.
Brewing / Ono Brewery
While dealing with some of the harshest winter weather in Japan, the brewery has continued to create sake the old-fashioned way–with human hands. For the creation of these two bottles, the brewers took on the challenge of making a very small amount of sake, something they had never done before. Based on the concept of “making the most of the environment,” the rice was prepared in a special room with no air conditioning under the watchful eye of the master brewer.
Bottle Art/ Ukiyo-e Artist, Shun
The art displayed on the bottle is printed in a unique way, allowing it to be put on display separately. The Japanese-style art is perfect for the collaboration and was inspired by one specific hope: that a new path will open to those who work hard after the many difficulties and troubles caused by the pandemic.
Bottle Making / Maruyoshi Kosaka Wood & Urushi Works
The circular label symbolizes the moon (water) and the sun (fire), each representing a world where different values are not only accepted but welcomed. Hand-painted and made with pure platinum and gold leaf by the talented craftsman at Maruyoshi Kosaka Wood & Urushi Works in Shiojiri, Nagano, these advanced painting techniques are sure to impress.
Each Bottle Features the Brewing Year, Number Printed in Lacquer
Marked with a unique serial number, all proceeds from the sales of these special sakes will be used to maintain and promote sustainable agriculture, support sake brewers, and bring traditional Japanese craftsmanship to the world.
Junmai Daiginjo – ‘Hitou ASCENDING,’ ‘Touka ILLUMINATING’
Official Site: https://hitoutouka.com/
Kyary Pamyu Pamyu Collaborates with Niigata Sake Brewery Hakkaisan for LOCAL POWER JAPAN Project
Celebrating the 10th anniversary of her major label debut, Kyary Pamyu Pamyu is staying active in 2022. The artist will perform at this year’s Coachella, one of the largest music festivals in the United States, and released her first full-length album in three years ‘Candy Racer’ in October 2021. On January 16, Kyary embarked on the largest tour of her career, ‘Kyary Pamyu Pamyu 10th ANNIVERSARY JAPAN TOUR 2022 CANDY WAVE,’ which will see the singer performing 30 shows across Japan. In conjunction with the nationwide tour, the “LOCAL POWER JAPAN Project” was launched to energize Japan through the appeal of regional towns and cities, and has been attracting major attention. Kyary’s tour is scheduled to wrap in Niigata on March 27, and the details of her next collaboration have been revealed!
Hakkaisan, founded in 1922, is one of the most well-known sake breweries in Niigata Prefecture. Kyary will be collaborating with a special slightly sweet non-alcoholic Malted Rice Amazake made by the company. Amazake was extremely popular during the Edo Period as a drink to keep cool in the heat, so this is a perfect product to grab for the upcoming season.
The special collaboration logo was inspired by Kyary’s 2014 hit Yumeno Hajima Ring Ring. The song is popular for graduation ceremonies with the theme of parting ways, making it appropriate for the current time, as graduation season in Japan is in late March.
A collaborative T-shirt is also on sale featuring the new logo and the singer’s 10th-anniversary logo. The shirt is available on the LOCAL POWER JAPAN Project website for two weeks only.
Booking.com Reveals 4 Best Lodgings with Outdoor Baths for Snow Viewing
16.March.2022 | SPOT
Booking.com Japan has revealed its top four picks for the Japanese accommodations with the best outdoor baths and snow views!
Zao Kokusai Hotel (Zao Onsen, Yamagata Prefecture)
Located 900 meters above sea level and surrounded by the gorgeous natural beauty of the Zao mountains, this resort has long been renowned for its spectacular view of seasonal scenery. During winter, guests can enjoy a fully spring-fed open-air bath while gazing at the snow-capped mountains. The milky white waters of the Zao Hot Springs have high sulfur content which will improve the texture of your skin. The resort also has a bath large enough to accommodate up to seven people at a time and a private bath for families or lovers.
Midorinokaze Resort Kitayuzawa (Date, Hokkaido)
The Midorinokaze Resort Kitayuzawa is surrounded by nature and contains one of the largest open-air baths in Japan, along with 20 unique fragrant baths for guests to enjoy. In winter, the surrounding trees seem to glisten with snow, and visitors are sure to find plenty of peace and relaxation while lounging beneath the grey skies.
Akakura Kanko Hotel (Myoko, Niigata Prefecture)
This highland resort sits on a 1,000-meter peak, offering unmatched views of Niigata Prefecture. The natural hot spring flows from the inside of Mt. Myoko, with healing waters perfect for soaking in during the cold winter months. The large baths are also equipped with a sauna and deck, and those wanting to view the scenery from their room can enjoy guest accommodations with private baths as well!
Satoyama Jujo (Minamiuonuma, Niigata Prefecture)
Winning a design award for its facilities, Satoyama Jujo has a different feel when compared to most hotels and ryokan. Booking.com recommends it for travelers looking for new experiences! In the open-air bath, visitors can relax while enjoying a panoramic view of Mt. Makihata, one of Japan’s 100 most famous peaks. Guests can also enjoy the starry skies at night. This is a perfect location for couples!
Each season in Japan offers uniquely beautiful scenery. How would you like to enjoy winter in one of these luxurious baths?
Hotel Nikko Niigata Opens Limited Time Cafe to Commemorate Sanrio Exhibition
To commemorate the opening of the 60th Anniversary Sanrio Exhibition: The Beginning of Kawaii in Niigata, Hotel Nikko Niigata has also opened a collaboration cafe on the 31st-floor Panorama Lounge. The cafe will be open until April 10 and feature an adorable menu and incredible view!
The Hotel Nikko x Sanrio Exhibition Collaboration Cafe will feature dishes, desserts, and drinks based on seven different Sanrio characters, including Hello Kitty. Each menu item comes with a random original coaster.
Characters whose birthdays fall during the cafe period will be featured in special designs. From March 1 until March 11, a drink inspired by Cinnamoroll, whose birthday is on March 6, will be available.
Hotel Nikko Niigata x Sanrio Exhibition Collaboration Cafe
Open: February 10 – April 10, 2022
Hours: 11:30-18:00 (Last Order at 17:00)
Address: Hotel Nikko Niigata 31F Befco Bakauke Observation Deck Panorama Lounge
Snow Garden Opens at Ishiuchi Maruyama Ski Resort in Niigata Prefecture
14.February.2022 | SPOT
Want something to do at a ski resort but not a fan of skiing? No problem! Ishiuchi Maruyama Ski Resort in Niigata Prefecture has opened the new Snow Garden, a complex filled with cafes and activities held in transparent dome tents and terraces. Visitors can relax in an open space overlooking the gorgeous landscape without breaking a sweat. The Snow Village will be open until March 27, 2022.
Enjoy the panoramic view of the snow-covered Uonuma Plains and Niigata’s breathtaking mountains while enjoying a warm beverage and wonderful company.
Rurouni Kenshin Gets New TV Anime Project from LIDENFILMS
26.December.2021 | ANIME&GAME
Announced at Jump Festa 2022 on December 19, a new Rurouni Kenshin anime project is coming soon! The series is being led by studio LIDENFILMS, known for working on Tokyo Revengers and Blade of the Immortal.
More details will be released soon!
Rurouni Kenshin Teaser Trailer