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Old Skool New Skool Sake | January 28th, 2016 @ Bar Zingaro

Old Skool New Skool Sake

Click on flyer for larger image

After decades of declining sales and a drastically shrinking market, the writing is on the wall for the nation’s sake brewers: the only way to survive is to adapt. This challenge has been readily accepted by a new generation of brewers who are combining traditional brewing techniques from the past (Old Skool) with modern innovation (New Skool) to create the sake for the 21st century and beyond.

This month at Bar Zingaro we will be looking how a young generation of brewers are using traditional kimoto, yamahai & bodaimoto brewing techniques to create delicious, dynamic sake which suits the palate of a modern consumer. Join Rebekah Wilson-Lye for her “Old Skool, New Skool Sake” presentation, followed by a guided tasting of beautifully crafted sake from seven innovative breweries.


Please contact us with the following information to
-Number of participants
-Phone number

※Please note that the reservation will not be completed until you receive the confirmation e-mail from Bar Zingaro.
Do not hesitate in contacting us by phone if you have any question: 03-5942-8382

<Entrance fee>
3,000 yen will be collected on the day of the event.


Special thanks to my sponsors for this event, Atilika Inc.

Special thanks to my sponsors for this event, Atilika Inc.





今回Bar Zingaroではその醸造家達が

ぜひレベッカによる“Old Skool, New Skool Sake”にふるってご参加下さい。





JSS & Dancyu Magazine “Enjoy Sake from Your 20s” Event | January 11th, 2016

Was honoured to be a part of The Japan Sake & Shochu Makers Association (JSS) & Dancyu Magazine’s “Enjoy Sake from Your 20s” event. It was a great opportunity to spread the joy of sake to a bright, new generation. Let’s kanpai with sake… but not until you’re 20. (^_−)−☆

JSS & Dancyu "Enjoy Sake from your 20s" Event


JSS & Dancyu Discussion Panel

JSS & Dancyu Discussion Panel


What a treat! Kawate-san brought a touch of Florilege to tonight’s event in the form of two amazing food + sake pairings. Not only is he a phenomenonal chef, he’s an inspiration for a new generation.



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Sake Night 2015, in Ebisu | December 18th, 2015

Thanks to the Japan Sake & Shochu Makers Association, FOX Channel & スチュアート オー for their support at last night’s Sake Night 2015, in Ebisu. A diverse gathering of international diplomats, media and residents enjoyed a tasting of sake from every prefecture in the country. A great night of sake love!

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Sake + Food | Savour the Flavour @ Bar Zingaro – Dec 5th

Sake + Food : Savour the Flavour

Click on flyer for larger image

Most people still think of sake as something to pair only with sushi and other Japanese cuisine. However, sake is the perfect accompaniment to any international cuisine – sometimes it’s an even better pairing than wine.
A bold statement? Come and find out why more and more chefs are discovering the flavour enhancing power of sake with non-Japanese food, and how you can find a place for sake on your dinner table.

This month at Bar Zingaro we will be looking at the flavours, aromas & styles of sake, and how you can find a pairing to match any kind of cuisine. Join Rebekah Wilson-Lye for a presentation on “Sake + Food: Savour the Flavour” followed by a guided tasting of beautifully crafted sake from six innovative breweries.


Please contact us with the following information to
-Number of participants
-Phone number

※Please note that the reservation will not be completed until you receive the confirmation e-mail from Bar Zingaro.
Do not hesitate in contacting us by phone if you have any question: 03-5942-8382

<Entrance fee>


Special thanks to my sponsors for this event, Atilika Inc.

Special thanks to my sponsors for this event, Atilika Inc.



お酒のソムリエレベッカによる今回の”SAKE +FOOD:Savour the Flavour” お酒のイベントでは




Fuglen Sake Flight | Nature’s Harvest – Autumn 2015

Fuglen Sake Flight – Nature’s Harvest


As we are living in an era when we are increasingly concerned with the quality and origin of our food, as well as the sustainable, organic cultivation of produce, a return to a regional style of sake which utilises local raw materials has great appeal.

This autumn at Fuglen we will be celebrating nature’s bounty with a selection of three sake made using local cultivated, chemical free rice, and traditional, low intervention brewing techniques.

Savour the unique, terroir-driven flavour of these beautifully crafted sake at our Nature’s Bounty Sake Flight release party on Wednesday, October 21st.

Daina Tokubetsu Junmai Hiyaoroshi

大那 特別純米 ひやおろし

At Kiku no Sato, sake production begins in the fertile fields that surround their kura.  This small family brewery is as equally committed to cultivating their own chemical free sake rice as they are to brewing flavoursome sake with that celebrates the terroir of their local area.

A gentle herbaceous aroma invites you into glass, where you are greeted by the gently matured flavour of sweet grains enlivened by a refreshing acidity. Departs with a clean dry finish and a lingering aftertaste of spicy cedar wood.  Enjoy this sake at a range of temperatures: bright & crisp when chilled, with the flavour of the rice becoming more prominent as the sake is warmed.  A sake to savour under the harvest moon.


Kiku no Sato Brewery, Nasu County, Tochigi – 菊の里酒造、栃木県須郡

Sake rice: Nasu County grown Gohykumangoku
Rice polishing rate: 57%
Sake Value Meter: +3
Acidity: 1.9
Alcohol: 16-17%

原料米: 栃木県那須産五百万石
精米歩合: 57%
日本酒度: +3
酸度 1.9
アルコール度 16-17%

Shichi Hon Yari “Muu” Munouyaku (Organic) Junmai 七本槍 無農薬純米 無有 火入れ 

This rich, deeply flavoured sake captures the spirit of Shiga area’s terroir, as well as the eco-mindedness of its modern craftspeople. Brewed from organic rice grown by the brewery & local farmers, then gently aged for 18 months to allow the flavours to settle & mature.

Ambrosial notes of sweet, mellow rice & malted grains on the nose. Full-bodied with well structured acidity and a dry finish. Enjoy chilled in a wine glass to enjoy its brisk, refreshing acidity, or serve at 45C for a mellower, comforting expression. Pair with lean grilled meat or river fish.


Tomita Brewery, Shiga – 冨田酒造、滋賀県

Sake rice: Locally grown Tamasakae (by brewery & local farmers)
Rice polishing rate: 60%
Yeast: #9
Nihonshudo: +4
Acidity: 1.8
Alcohol: 15-16%

原料米: 滋賀県産玉栄
精米歩合: 60%
酵母: 協会9号酵母
日本酒度: +4
酸度 1.8
アルコール度 15-16%

Daigo no Shizuku Bodaimoto  Junmai Muraoka Nama Genshu

奥播磨 春待ちこがれて 山廃純米 生酒

Made using the ancient bodaimoto brewering method first developed the temples of Nara,  in which the sake is fermented naturally by airborne yeasts, with organic rice which is grown by the brewery in their own fields. Unpasturised, unfiltered, undiluted and completely additive free, this is a pure, artisan sake with a flavour that is beyond compare.

Cloudy in the glass, with a soft creamy hue, its has a heady aroma of pear, yeast and sweet koji rice. Its dynamic flavour of sweet fruit and pickled ume plum, and grapefruit like acidity dance across your palate.  A perfect companion for cheese at the end of an mid-autumn meal.

Terada Honke Daigo no Shizuku

Terada Honke Daigo no Shizuku

Terada Honke , Chiba – 下村酒造、兵庫県

Sake rice: Locally grown organic Koshihihari
Rice polishing rate: 90-93%
Nihonshudo: -40~-70
Acidity: 6-12
Alcohol: 8%

原料米: 千葉県産 無農薬 コシヒカリ
精米歩合: 90-93%
日本酒度: -40~-70
酸度: 6-12
アルコール度 8%



I’m excited to announce that Ritsuko Shimada & I will be MCs at The 2nd Satozake Festa For Women 2015, on September 26th (Sat), in Ginza.

It’s a wonderful opportunity sample the jizake (regional sake) of 30 small artisan breweries, who draw on the natural resources located within 100kms of their kura. Through this terroir-driven sake you can journey the length of the country, and discover the unique flavour of each region.

The third session (6:30pm-8:30pm) will be bi-lingual and open to both men & women.

I look forward to seeing you there!

Follow the link for more details.

Satozake Festa

Sake & Shochu | The Drinks that Koji Built @ OnJapan Cafe

Koji - Aspergillus Oryzae

Koji – Aspergillus oryzae

‘Ever wanted to see how different types of koji (a mold that’s commonly used in Chinese, Korean and Japanese culture to ferment soybeans as well as to convert sake rice to sugar to make alcohol) affect nihonshu (a Japanese fermented rice wine) and shochu (a Japanese distilled spirit) differently?
Join Tokyo-based nihonshu expert, Rebekah Wilson-Lye, and shochu savant, Christopher Pellegrini, for a unique tasting event that will feature two of Japan’s national drinks side-by-side.
日本酒にも焼酎にも麹の種類がその味わいの決め手になっていること、ご存知ですか?今回、SAKEコンサルタントのレベッカ・ウィルソン=ライさん、焼酎エキスパートのクリストファー・ペレグリニさんが揃ってOnJapan CAFÉに登場!異なる麹で作られる日本酒・焼酎をテイスティングしながら、それぞれの視点から「日本のお酒」について熱く語ります。お二人の間でどんなやり取りが交わされるのか!?お酒好き必見のスペシャルイベントです!

Sake & Shochu | The Drinks that Koji Built

September, Saturday 12th 5:00pm-7:30pm

■ Lecturer:: Ms. Rebekah Wilson-Lye & Mr. Christopher Pellegrini
■ Language: English
■ Limited to 30 people (first-come, first-served basis)
■ Charge: 5,000 JPY per person including 6 different glasses of Shochu & Sake with light snack)
■ 講師: レベッカ・ウィルソン=ライさん & クリストファー・ペレグリニさん
■ 言語: 英語
■ 人数: 30名様(先着順)
■ 参加費: お一人様 5,000円(日本酒・焼酎6種の試飲とおつまみ付き)


If you are interested in participating this event, please contact us via an e-mail at

Please be sure to include the event title and date, your name, number of participants and your contact information (e-mail / phone number) in the application.


Sake: A Sense of Place | Bar Zingaro

ICHI FOR THE MICHI is pleased to announce that I will be holding a regular sake presentations at Bar Zingaro, in Nakano, from May 10th, 2014.

The evening will begin with a presentation of the theme Sake: A Sense of Place, followed by a guided tasting of sake from seven innovative breweries. We will also be serving a selection of cheeses and otsumami snacks for your enjoyment. Tickets cost ¥1,500, and includes all food & sake served during the event – bargain!

Due to limited space, reservations are essential. Bookings can be made directly with Bar Zingaro, or through their Facebook page.

Click on the image for more information.

Sake A Sense of Place


Fuglen Sake 101: Sakamai

When spring arrives, sake brewers around the country wind up production for the year, and farmers being the labour-intensive process of planting the rice for next year’s brew. But while sake can be made from table rice, only premium sake can be brewed from sakamai: rice which has been specifically developed for sake making.

There are around 100 different types of sake rice in use today, each with its own unique characteristics that will have a significant affect on the taste of the final product.

In this season’s flight we will compare sake brewed from three iconic grains: the majestic Yamada Nishiki; the pristine Gohyakumangoku; and, the granddaddy of them both, Omachi – the only pure strain of sake rice in Japan.

Aizumusume Junmai

Aizumusume Junmai – 会津娘 純米

A classic expression of Aizu grown Gohyakumangoku rice. Fresh yet restrained fragrance. Light bodied with a calm, clear flavour which spreads across the palate, then departs with a clean finish.

Takahashi Shōsaku Shuzo, Fukushima-ken – 高橋庄作酒造、福島県 

Sake rice: Locally grown Gohyakumangoku
Rice polishing rate: 60%
Nihonshudo: +2~+3
Acidity: 1.4~ 1.6
Alcohol: 15%

原料米: 会津産 五百万石
精米歩合: 60%
酸度: 1.4~1.6度
アルコール度: 15%

Jikon Junmaiginjo Yamada Nishiki

Jikon Junmaiginjō Yamada Nishiki Muroka Nama Genshu

而今 純米吟醸 山田錦 無濾過生原酒*

Yamada Nishiki’s rich, fragrant character gets amplified in this charming Junmaiginjō. Ripe melon & green apple aromas. A sweet, well-rounded flavour, enlivened by pleasant acidity, and a faint bitterness that lingers in the mouth.

Kiyasho Shuzō, Mie-ken – 木屋正酒造, 三重県

Sake rice: Yamada Nishiki locally grown in Iga, Mie-ken.
Rice polishing rate: 50%
Yeast: No. 9
Nihonshudo: +1.0
Acidity: 1.2
Alcohol: 16.5%

酵母: 9号

Kaze no Mori Omachi

Kaze no Mori Junmaiginjō Shibori Hana Muroka Nama Genshu.

風の森 純米吟醸しぼり華* 無濾過生原酒

Kaze no Mori harnesses the rich, fruity, earthiness that is unique to Omachi in this superb Junmai. Lively & fragrant, with refined acidity and a smooth, round flavour that wraps the palate.

* ‘Shibori Hana’ is Kaze no Mori’s moniker for Arabashiri; a term linked to the pressing process. When the moromi (fermenting mash) is placed cloth bags and laid into a tradition fune box press, sake will immediately begin to run out due to the weight of the bags – without any pressure being applied by the press. This run-off sake is known as “arabashiri,” which means “rough run.” Kaze no Mori believes it is the most lively and fragrant section of pressed sake, hence the more flowery epithet.

Yucho Shuzo, Nara-ken – 油長酒造、奈良県

Sake rice: Omachi grown in Bizen, Okayama-ken.
Rice polishing rate: 60%
Yeast: No. 7
Nihonshudo: -4.0
Acidity: 2.0
Alcohol: 17.5%

原料米: 備前 雄町
精米歩合: 60%
酵母: 協会7号系
日本酒度: -4.0
酸度 2.0
アルコール度 17.5%

NOTE: As always, you can supplement your flight, or replace any of the above sake, with Norway’s own premium sake: Nøgne Ø “Nadakajima” Junmai or Yamahai Junmai, brewed with Hokkaido grown Ginpu sake rice – developed especially for cold climate conditions.