January 17, 2014 at 9:11 AM

33 Sakes in 33 Days: #10 Evoluzione Junmai Daiginjo

Honey's Sake Symposium from Ten Thousand Waves

By Honey Harris

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We are celebrating Ten Thousand Waves' 33rd birthday by tasting 33 Sakes in 33 Days at their new restaurant, Izanami.  We are already at our 10th sake and today we are talking about Evoluzione Junmai Daiginjo.  Now this sake is exquisite in every way.  Junmai Daiginjo is at the top of the pyramid I talked about yesterday, meaning that is very refined and very smooth.  Daiginjo is the highest grade of sake and since it is a Junmai Daiginjo, no alcohol is added.  The Evoluzione Junami Daiginjo is produced by Ume No Yado and has an alcohol content of 15%.  It is an elegant sake, with a nice combo of subtle fruit and herbal notes.  It is also said to be very complex.  All I know is that this is an impressive sake which I highly recommend.  I think it's always fun to know about the brewery and this sake is brewed at the Ume No Yado brewery, which was founded in 1893 and is located at the foot of Mount Katsuragi in Nara, often said to be the birthplace of sake.  The phrase "ume no yado" means "plum house" and refers to an ancient plum tree located on the grounds of the brewery which has been there for as long as anyone can remember.  Their motto is "small volume, yet high quality" and though they tend to use many traditional brewing practices, their marketing seems more modern and innovative. Since 2002, they have been exporting their sake and seem to be trying to embrace a U.S. audience by making their sake labels more approachable as well as embracing the idea of sake cocktails.  Hmm... sake cocktails sounds delightful! 

Today at Izanami they are featuring Evoluzione Junmai Daiginjo, so you can drive up to Ten Thousand Waves and sample this delicious sake yourself. And of course, Chef Kim Muller's out-of-this-world menu will taste so spectacular with this sake, too.  Speaking of Izanami, now through the end of February they are having happy hour every evening after 9 pm, and all food is 33% off.   Don't forget that today you can log onto santafe.com keyword sake and register to win dinner for two at Izanami and a private hot tub for two. You just have to name all 5 of the sakes I've tasted this week. On Monday, we'll announce the winner. Stay tuned in the 10 a.m.. hour every weekday to hear me talking about the sake of the day from the fine folks at Ten Thousand Waves and Izanami.

Enter the contest here.