Alcohol isn't something that is indispensable to human life. However, forcenturies humans have made connections by enjoying it together. I have madethat my life work, and at Imayo Tsukasa we pour our hearts into that end.
|Company name||Imayo Tsukasa Sake Brewery Co. Ltd.|
|Address||1-1 Kagamigaoka Chuo-ku Niigata City JAPAN 950-0074|
9:00AM – 5:00PM（Weekends & National Holidays closed）
9:00AM – 5:00PM（Open daily, 31 Dec – 3 Jan closed）
Office TEL：025-245-3231 / FAX：025-245-3233
Shop TEL : 025-245-0325
|Chief Executive Officer||Toru Okada|
|Established||1767（business operation began）1951（company was formed）|
Imayo Tsukasa started as an inn and sake shop. From the late Edo period to the early Meiji era, Niigata was said to have a higher population than Edo. As the heartland of Japan, Niigata was prosperous and bustling with industry. It was also one of the 3 geisha capitals of Japan, along with Kyoto and Edo. It's a tradition that is still alive today. Since the middle of the Meiji era Imayo Tsukasa has been a fully dedicated sake brewery. The Niigata soil was fertile, the Agano water was clean, and we built a facility in Nuttari, a hub for Japanese fermented goods like miso, sake and soy sauce. Nuttari products are in high demand by first-rate chefs around Japan. It was also one of the 3 geisha capitals of Japan, along with Kyoto and Edo.
The Representative of Niigata Sake
A long time ago there was a period of time when the local sake makers added a lot of water to the sake they brewed to increase production. The weak flavor gave it a bad reputation, and the nickname "goldfish sake" because it was said to be so diluted a fish could survive in it. However, Imayo Tsukasa didn't dilute its sake, so for a time, we were considered the representative Niigata sake among shop owners as a product they could be proud to sell.
Sake that connects
Connecting Past and Present
In Japanese, Imayo Tsukasa means "Master of the Time", or in other words, the leader of the current generation. Now, we interpret that to mean that we will make sake to match the tastes of the present era. In traditional industries like sake brewing, this can be seen as unconventional and a little difficult. However, to make sake more accessible, we cherish the old tradition while staying committed to new concepts, designs and enjoyment methods.
Connecting Rural and Urban
Decades have passed since the decline of the "thriving rural town" in Japan. Having said that, we think sake might be what preserves them. Sake is the embodiment of the soil, air, rice and water of the region it's from. When you drink sake, you are drinking the livelihood and the land of the people who live there. Imayo Tsukasa is the nearest brewery to Niigata station. We know that as such, we will be a representative of Niigata sakes to many visitors from around the world. We take that responsibility very seriously. We create a memorable experience for our guests that come tour our brewery because when you're enjoying Imayo Tsukasa, you're enjoying Niigata.
Like I said before, sake is not an indispensable part of our existence. It simply plays a small role in us stepping out of our lives and having an exchange with another person. If the sake tastes good, compliments the food, and is drank responsibly, it will put a smile on your face.
We recognize that when we meet you it's not a random encounter, and we have
the opportunity to create a lasting relationship. To that end, we hope to not just
make a product, but make an experience for our customers and guests.
Although that is a work in progress, we are excited about our next innovation,
and about being a company that can support you though your sake journey. As
long as there are people who want our sake, we will continue on ours.
Sake Making at Imayo Tsukasa
All Pure Rice Sake Brewery
Wanting to review our brand and reflect on our brewing method, In 2006 Imayo Tsukasa vowed to be an “only-junmai” company. It’s not easy. Because you can’t add anything to adjust taste or alcohol content, you have to take extra special care of the rice in every step of the process. We value the importance of producing nothing but high-level sake, working hard to make only premium sake. These include Junmai Daiginjo, Junmai Ginjo and Junmaishu.
The Luxury of Using Brewing-Suitable Rice
There’s a saying in the sake making world. If the rice grain is large, the protein value is small. And when there’s more water absorption in the rice, the saccharification (glucose production) is better. Therefore a closely-milled, long-steamed rice grain is thought to be best for sake production. At Imayo Tsukasa we are working had to make sake that brings out the flavor in food and that people don’t get tired of drinking. To do that, we are dedicated to using 100% high- quality Niigata rice for all of our sake (with the exception of one), and carefully monitoring the rice using the most proven techniques at every stage of production.
The Pure Water of Mt. Suganatake
In sake making, water plays a vital role. This is especially so in the final stages when water is added to the nearly completed product. Everything from the taste, smell and purity is considered when choosing a water source. While some minerals certainly assist in the fermentation process, iron and manganese break down liquor production. It’s also an important and difficult task to keep organic material at a minimum. There is no absolute requirement for the mineral or pH balance of the water used, so many breweries in Niigata use tap water. That's not necessarily a bad thing, as Niigata's tap water is considered delicious, but to take extra care, Imayo Tsukasa upgraded from using the subsoil water of the nearby Agano river, and we now exclusively brew with the Niigata mountain water of Suganatake, which has become known as a famously delicious water around Japan.