Although Scotch Whisky has cornered the aged spirit segment, a newly released sake may just change that perception.

Daimon Brewery, a Japanese craft sake brewery established in 1826 has revealed a new limited-edition series called the Toji Series. A 22-year-old blended aged sake, it stands as Osaka’s first Limited Edition Koshu blend.

Toji (杜氏) is the Japanese name for the Sake Master Brewer, and this series is a tribute to the many Tojis that have brought their knowledge and experiences to Daimon Brewery and the sake industry. According to a statement from Daimon Brewery, this new Sake Series represents the blending of different generations of artists. It also serves to honour those who have taught and perfected this ancient craft.

Daimon Brewery

The limited edition Toji Series aged sake has been produced by blending some of Daimon Brewery’s rich koshu (aged sake) with a batch of top-grade award-winning Junmai Daiginjo. Combined, they bring together the skills of the Tojis of today and yesteryear.

The Toji Series Edition 1 (Vintage 1999 BY02)

Carefully blending the 4-time Gold Medal champion Daimon 35 with a 22-year-old koshu has enabled Daimon Brewery to launch this very special and limited sake. The product comes in a stunning individually numbered white ‘swing-top’ bottle. It is presented in a wooden cedar box.

The sake is ready to be enjoyed immediately or can be aged further in the bottle. For the latter, the bottle should be kept like a fine wine for proper aging. However, due to the scarcity of the 22-year-old koshu, the production volume for Vintage 1999 BY02 is limited to 1,000 bottles for the first year’s release.  The first bottle (bottle number 0001 of 1000) will go under the hammer at Sotheby’s on 24 February 2022.

Tasting Notes

Yasutaka Daimon, a sixth generation Kuramoto and Master Brewer of the Brewery, explains that The Toji Series is a representation of the true core of Daimon Brewery — umami. “It is a powerhouse of a sake with outstanding delicious proportions. It celebrates the skills and techniques of the many Toji’s that have guided Daimon Brewery and is a homage to the long history of sake-making.”

On the nose, The Toji Series reportedly has a beautiful aroma with a faint Matsutake mushroom aroma and hints of charcuterie. In the mouth, it starts off sweet with an umami forward palate, and the complexity of flavours then evolves to bring a mature umami roundness with hints of minerality and a deliciously cured egg yolk flavour. A cascading long finish that allows you to enjoy it alone, or with the finest of Japan’s cuisine.

The Toji Series is designed to be served in a white wine glass. It can be paired with food such as grilled meats, mushrooms, deli meats, stronger flavoured cheese, or as a digestif (to be enjoyed in a whisky tumbler as an after-meal drink).

(Images: Daimon Brewery)

written by.
Richard Augustin
Former chef turned writer; Richard has tip-toed around the publishing industry for two decades. When not busy chasing deadlines, you can still find him experimenting with recipes in the kitchen.

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