Forty sake last night — slightly less than the 326 featured at September’s Joy of Sake — because after all, isn’t that the nature of an Aftertaste?
Parties for people who don’t want the party to end: Joy of Sake schedules about six throughout the year, starting with last night’s romp at the Japanese Cultural Center. All these sake were bottled less than two months ago and featured at November’s Joy of Sake competition in Tokyo.
Result? Fresh, clear notes versus the sweeter, deeper umami nuances of more aged sake. Ninety people converging on gold and silver star winners, buying every single one of the $25 bottles of mystery sake to benefit brewery workers who lost their homes in the March earthquake and tsunami, and eventually emptying every bottle in the ballroom.
As with every Joy of Sake, the noise level rose as faces got redder. I ended up pinned in my seat by a happy Shinto priest expounding on the nature of the Japanese heart. And because I forgot to take a picture of the sake that made my table so happy, here’s an open plea to sake importers: Please bring to Hawaii Shichida junmai ginjo from Saga in southern Japan, a gold star winner.