August 2016 - US Sake

This month's Wine feature is US Sake Wines
US Sake Reviews
216138
Kenbishi
Mizuho Junmai
Bright straw color. Complex, umami meaty aromas and flavors of tamari, beef bouillon, marinated mushrooms, and roasted plantains with a silky, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a tingling, epic, long hint of latte and cocoa, spicy roasted chestnuts, and cocoa cream finish. A rich and savory sake that brings a suitcase of umami to the party.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
216124
Okunomatsu
Tokubetsu Junmai
Pale white gold color. Tropical aromas and flavors of ripe pineapple, nougat, and delicate sweet and peppery spices with a satiny, vibrant, fruity medium-to-full body and a tingling, complex, long cantaloupe salad, radish sprouts, young coconut, and turmeric tea finish. A rich, fruity, and satisfying junmai that is a benchmark of the category.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
216135
Mizbasho
Ginjo Sake
White gold color. Fruity aromas and flavors of tropical fruit salad, honeyed apple, tapioca, and anise with a satiny, crisp, fruity medium body and an interesting, medium-length coconut water and spicy baked banana finish. A wonderfully refreshing sake that will liven up any meal or get together and will appeal to Chardonnay drinkers.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
216136
Mizbasho
Junmai Daiginjo
Pale silvery emerald straw color. Fruity aromas and flavors of pineapple husk, Asian pear, and anise seed with a satiny, bright, fruity medium body and an even, refreshing, medium-length nectarine custard, spiced melon, radish, and ginger finish. A delightfully fruity and delicate spicy daiginjo.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
216192
Yaegaki
"Mu" Junmai Daiginjo
Pale silvery straw color. Earthy aromas and flavors of waxy honeycomb and apple, macadamia brittle, fennel, and leaves with a silky, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a tingling, interesting, medium-long coconut milk, papaya custard, and water chestnut finish. A rich, round and creamy sake with interesting savory, earthy nuances.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
216167
Ichishima
Junmai Sake
Silvery straw color. Creamy, minerally aromas and flavors of clay pot, ground nuts, toasted coconut milk, and banana leaf with a silky, bright, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a polished, engaging, medium-length sweet cream, caramelized pear, and dried pineapple finish. A lively and attractive sake that will cover a lot of bases.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
216193
Yaegaki
"Mu" Black Label Junmai Daiginjo
Brilliant silvery emerald straw color. Buttery, candied floral piney aromas and flavors of rice pudding, cinnamon roll, dried tropical fruits, and dusty balsa with a silky, vibrant, fruity medium-to-full body and a tingling, involved, medium-long coconut cream, delicate spiced nuts, and pepper finish. A fruity, engaging sake.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
215717
Watanabe Sake Brewing Co. Ltd.
"Horai Kaden Tedukuri" Junmai Ginjo Sake
Clear color. Tropical aromas and flavors of ripe pineapple and papaya, baked coconut, anise seed, and goat’s milk with a satiny, vibrant, fruity medium-to-full body and an even, compelling, medium-long sweet cream, spicy almond brittle, radish, and hint caramelized bacon finish. A vibrantly delicious tropical fruit-driven sake that is sure to please.
92 points $11 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
216122
Hatsumago
Junmai Sake
Silvery emerald straw color. Aromas and flavors of almond nougat, coconut water, melon and papaya, and kohlrabi with a silky, bright, dryish light body and a smooth, breezy hint of anise finish. A very clean and flavorful junmai with excellent balance and length.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
216120
Kurosawa
Junmai Kimoto Sake
Medium straw color. Green, creamy aromas and flavors of dried citrus and melon in cream, bamboo, Greek yogurt, and caulk with a silky, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a smooth, breezy honey baked apple, jicama, and green pineapple and coconut finish. An appetizing sake for the table.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
216139
Kenbishi
Kuromatsu Honjozo Sake
Silvery straw color. Interesting, umami aromas and flavors of marinated mushrooms, cacao nib, hint of tamari, and rice cake with a satiny, vibrant, medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium-length chocolate coconut milk, jicama, and radish finish. An intriguing cocoa-accented sake with great table appeal.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
216171
Ichishima
Junmai Daiginjo Sake
White gold color. Grainy aromas and flavors of rice flakes, baked pear in cream, almond skin, and hint of crayon with a bright, dryish light-to-medium body and a tingling, breezy peppered jicama, rice pudding with powdered sugar, and cashew brittle finish. A pleasant, relaxing sake with a nice creaminess.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
216123
Shichiken
Junmai Sake
White gold color. Interesting, exotic smoky aromas of grilled pineapple and mango, toasted herbs, pickled melon rind, and cashew fruit with a satiny, fruity medium-to-full body and a graceful, complex, medium-long spiced melon in cream and overripe yellow apple finish. A buoyant and flavorful junmai with a pleasing creamy, roundness.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
216121
Hananomai
Junmai Ginjo Sake
Emerald straw color. Toasty aromas and flavors of coconut macaroon and taffy, caramel nougat nut bar, powdered milk, and hint of latex and clay with a soft, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a tingling, refreshing, breezy horchata, melon in cream, daikon, and hint of green mint tea finish. A solid, well made junmai ginjo.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
215692
Four Fox
Junmai Daiginjo Sake
White gold color. Dusty aromas and flavors of powdered milk and almond flour with a silky, crisp, dry-yet-fruity body and an effortless, charming, breezy papaya, cream of rice cereal, and cashew fruit finish. An interesting grain-forward daiginjo.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
216172
Ichishima
Ginnoyorokobi Daiginjo
Silver color. Dusty, earthy aromas and flavors of gravel, mushroom, vanilla yogurt, and bark with a silky, bright, fruity light-to-medium body and an engaging, medium-length dried papaya, coconut milk, and mulch finish.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
216194
Yaegaki
Kurobin Black Bottle
Pale white gold color. Fruity aromas and flavors of Asian pear, buttermilk, honeyed nuts, and coconut water with a silky, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, delightful, breezy apple, starfruit, and water chestnut finish. A savory and nicely structured sake that will go great with tempura.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
216195
Yaegaki
Draft Sake
Silvery emerald straw color. Umami aromas and flavors of overripe melon and papaya, seaweed salad, honeyed potato peel, and marinated mushrooms with a round, bright, fruity medium body and a smooth, compelling, breezy melon balls, creamy rice pudding, nougat, and radish sprouts finish. A round, savory sake sipper.
85 points $5 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
216170
Ichishima
Silk Deluxe Junmai Sake
White gold color. Savory, umami aromas and flavors of marinated mushrooms, macadamia brittle, toasted meringue, and dried pear with a supple, off-dry body and a tingling, compelling, medium-length powdered sugared pineapple and peach, persimmon, and coconut rice pudding finish. A notably sweet and fruity sake that will pair nicely with spicy foods or desserts.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
216168
Ichishima
Tokubetsu Honjozo Sake
Silver color. Earthy aromas and flavors of dusty sweet potato, lemon-lavender talc, and roasted chestnuts with a bright, dry body and a smooth, swift melon ride and hint of citrus finish. A light and round sake for carefree enjoyment.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
216137
Makiri
Junmai Ginjo
Silvery straw color. Aromas and flavors of dried papaya and mango, nutskin, and leafy earth with a silky, crisp, dryish light-to-medium body and an even, engaging, cheery delicate spice, rice pudding, fruit pith, and egg shell finish. A pleasant ginjo quaffer.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
216169
Ichishima
Seishu Sake
Light silver color. Citrusy, fruity aromas and flavors of plantain, bamboo, and macadamia nut with a lightly tannic, crisp, fruity light body and a sleek, breezy melon rind, daikon, papaya, and rice paper finish. A solid sake for the table.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
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