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Sake Aizu Chushou Junmai Daiginjo Hattannishiki

This Junmai Daiginjo has a beautiful nose full of banana, melon and star anise. The all natural brewing process gives this sake a bright fresh palate of plum, lime and minerality with a clean dry finish. A very food friendly sake, and is thought to be best after the meal with a light, smooth, rich cow's milk cheese.

POLISHING RATIO: 40%
ALCOHOL: 16-17%
SMV +/-: +1.0
ACIDITY: 1.2
RICE KOJI: HATTANISHIKI
RICE KAKE: HATTANISHIKI
YEAST STRAIN: PROPRIETARY YEAST

FOOD PAIRINGS: Poached Lobster, Seared Scallops, Tofu, Steamed Dumplings
CHEESE PAIRINGS: Brillat Savarin, Cambozola, Dulce Latte Gorgonzola, Mimolette

Sake Aizu Chushou Tokubetsu Honjozo (1.8 liter)

An inviting sake full of sweet spice, almond and smoke with a slight herbaceous character. Off dry, rich and almost chewy, the palate features melon, peach and mineral notes with a distinctively dry finish.

POLISHING RATIO: 55%
ALCOHOL: 15-16%
SMV +/-: +4.0
ACIDITY: 1.0
RICE KOJI: GOHYAKUMANGOKU
RICE KAKE: TAKENEMINO
YEAST STRAIN: PROPRIETARY YEAST

FOOD PAIRINGS: Duck, Chinese, Italian, Cured Meat, Sashimi, Carpaccio, Fresh Crab, Ceviche
CHEESE PAIRINGS: Pt. Reyes Tome, Asiago Mezzuna, Jeff Select Gouda

Sake Eikun Junmai Ginjo Big Hawk (300ml)

Rice milling: 60%
Rice varietal: Iwai (Only available in Kyoto)
Alcohol: 15%
Sake meter value: +3.0
Acidity: 1.3
Tasting Notes: --------

Eikun sake uses water from a source called "Fusui", rated as one of the top 100 sources of water in Japan. This water source is located just south of the ancient Japanese, and still cultural capital of Japan, Kyoto. 

 

 

Review:

"Clear with a platinum blue cast. Aromas of coconut milk, melon, pear and rice pudding with a with a supple, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a vanilla, apple, and pepper accented finish. A robust and lively sake that will sing with spicy Asian cuisine."
- Beverage Testing Institute (July 2nd 2014), 91 pts

 

Sake Gassan Junmai Ginjo Mountain Moon (300ml)

 

Woodsy honeycomb, nutshell, and mushroom patch aromas with a satiny fruity-yet-dry medium-to-full body and a delicate savory mushroom stock, chestnut, and golden beet driven finish. A fine choice for tempura. 91 Points -Beverage Tasting Institute

RATING: 91 points (Exceptional)
CATEGORY: Junmai Ginjo Sake, Sake
ALCOHOL BY VOLUME: 15.4%
TASTING LOCATION: In Our Chicago Tasting Room
TASTING DATE: Dec-05-2012
WINE ID: 200767

Sake Gassan Junmai Ginjo Mountain Moon (720ml)

Woodsy honeycomb, nutshell, and mushroom patch aromas with a satiny fruity-yet-dry medium-to-full body and a delicate savory mushroom stock, chestnut, and golden beet driven finish. A fine choice for tempura. 91 Points -Beverage Tasting Institute

RATING: 91 points (Exceptional)
CATEGORY: Junmai Ginjo Sake, Sake
ALCOHOL BY VOLUME: 15.4%
TASTING LOCATION: In Our Chicago Tasting Room
TASTING DATE: Dec-05-2012
WINE ID: 200767

Sake Gunma Izumi Yamahai Honjozo

TASTING NOTES:
This is a classic, delicious Honjozo with crimini mushroom, almonds and lilac aromas. The first sip of this sake is full of stone fruit and minerals complimented by notes of caramel, cocoa and almond and finishes with plenty of umami.

POLISHING RATIO: 60%
ALCOHOL: 16-17%
SMV +/-: +3.0
ACIDITY: 1.6
RICE KOJI: JAPANESE RICE 100%
RICE KAKE: JAPANESE RICE 100%
YEAST STRAIN: KYOKAI 

FOOD PAIRINGS: Chinese Food, One Pot dishes like Beef Stew.
CHEESE PAIRINGS: Foggy Morning, Prima Donna, Domaine de Village

Sake Gunma Izumi Yamahai Honjozo 300ml

TASTING NOTES:
This is a classic, delicious Honjozo with crimini mushroom, almonds and lilac aromas. The first sip of this sake is full of stone fruit and minerals complimented by notes of caramel, cocoa and almond and finishes with plenty of umami.

POLISHING RATIO: 60%
ALCOHOL: 16-17%
SMV +/-: +3.0
ACIDITY: 1.6
RICE KOJI: JAPANESE RICE 100%
RICE KAKE: JAPANESE RICE 100%
YEAST STRAIN: KYOKAI 

FOOD PAIRINGS: Chinese Food, One Pot dishes like Beef Stew.
CHEESE PAIRINGS: Foggy Morning, Prima Donna, Domaine de Village

Sake Horan Nigori Morning Frost  (300ml)

Rice milling: 65%
Rice varietal: Gohyakumangoku
Alcohol: 15.3%
Sake meter value: (-)4
Acidity: 1.4
Tasting Notes: A premium Nigori "Cloudy" Sake with a hint of tropical fruits aroma. It is off dry (slightly sweet) and rather full body.


Food pairings: Goes well with Tofu, white meat dishes and creamy foods

 


Review:

"Creamy bone white color. Mild aromas of coconut cream and apple bread with a supple and chunky, fruity medium-to-full body and a honeyed pineapple, radish, and banana custard accented finish. A nicely balanced dessert sake."

- Beverage Testing Institute (July 2nd 2014), 92 pts

Sake Horan Nigori Morning Frost (720ml)

Rice milling: 65%
Rice varietal: Gohyakumangoku
Alcohol: 15.3%
Sake meter value: (-)4
Acidity: 1.4
Tasting Notes: A premium Nigori "Cloudy" Sake with a hint of tropical fruits aroma. It is off dry (slightly sweet) and rather full body.


Food pairings: Goes well with Tofu, white meat dishes and creamy foods.


Review:

"Creamy bone white color. Mild aromas of coconut cream and apple bread with a supple and chunky, fruity medium-to-full body and a honeyed pineapple, radish, and banana custard accented finish. A nicely balanced dessert sake."

- Beverage Testing Institute (July 2nd 2014), 92 pts

Sake Jozen Mizuno Gotoshi Genshu Junmaï Ginjo

Light, fluid, fruity
An icon among Niigata sakes, one of the most famous in Japan. A sake with fluidity, lightness, with a fruity nose (white fruits flesh). In mouth, it is clear and fine flavors on that slide as a source water to finish on pure and crystalline notes.

His name Jozen Mizuno Gotoshi, alone evokes the purity of water in mountains of Niigata. It goes wonderfully oysters, salmon tartare, the steamed white fish (sake, why not!). On a sashimi or carpaccio and crunchy pickled or cooked vegetables. Recommended serving temperature between 8°C to room temperature.

Sake Jozen Mizuno Gotoshi Junmai Ginjo Namazake

This unpasteurized sake is exciting and lively with a nose full of citrus, apple blossom and shizo. The palate is equally as bold featuring fresh persimmons, marshmallow and slightly underipe stone fruit. The finish is clean showing soft minerality.

POLISHING RATIO: 60%
ALCOHOL: 15.5
SMV +/-: +5.0
ACIDITY: 1.6
RICE KOJI: GOHYAKUMANGOKU
RICE KAKE: KOSHI IBUKI
YEAST STRAIN: K1801

FOOD PAIRINGS: Sushi Nigiri with fatty fish, oysters, omelettes, Lighter Italian, Chinese or French dishes
CHEESE PAIRINGS: Mildly ripe Coulommiers or Brie, Italian Raschera

Sake Jozen Mizuno Gotoshi Junmai Ginjo Namazake (300ml)

This unpasteurized sake is exciting and lively with a nose full of citrus, apple blossom and shizo. The palate is equally as bold featuring fresh persimmons, marshmallow and slightly underipe stone fruit. The finish is clean showing soft minerality.

POLISHING RATIO: 60%
ALCOHOL: 15.5
SMV +/-: +5.0
ACIDITY: 1.6
RICE KOJI: GOHYAKUMANGOKU
RICE KAKE: KOSHI IBUKI
YEAST STRAIN: K1801

FOOD PAIRINGS: Sushi Nigiri with fatty fish, oysters, omelettes, Lighter Italian, Chinese or French dishes
CHEESE PAIRINGS: Mildly ripe Coulommiers or Brie, Italian Raschera

Sake Matsuno Kotobuki Honjozo Otoko no Yujyo

TASTING NOTES: This fresh, subtle Honjozo has a lovely nose of cantaloupe, leek, fresh clay and pear. With just a hint of sweetness, the palate is light bodied with alluring flavors of burnt caramel, chalk and marsh-mallow and a classic Honjozo clean, dry finish.
The fanciful name "Otoko no Yujyo", represents a feeling for which the sake was made, to honor brotherly love, between comrades.

PREFECTURE: TOCHIGI
POLISHING RATIO: 65%
ALCOHOL: 15.0 - 16.0%
SMV +/-: +8.0
ACIDITY: 1.4
RICE KOJI: HITOGOKOCHI
RICE KAKE: TOCHIGI 14
YEAST STRAIN: KYOKAI 901

FOOD PAIRINGS: Versatile with all foods, Grilled Fish, Paella, Smoked Fish, Fried Fish or Fried Chicken
CHEESE PAIRINGS: Foggy Morning, Prima Donna, Domaine de Village

Sake Matsuno Kotobuki Honjozo Otoko no Yujyo (300ml)

TASTING NOTES: This fresh, subtle Honjozo has a lovely nose of cantaloupe, leek, fresh clay and pear. With just a hint of sweetness, the palate is light bodied with alluring flavors of burnt caramel, chalk and marsh-mallow and a classic Honjozo clean, dry finish.
The fanciful name "Otoko no Yujyo", represents a feeling for which the sake was made, to honor brotherly love, between comrades.

PREFECTURE: TOCHIGI
POLISHING RATIO: 65%
ALCOHOL: 15.0 - 16.0%
SMV +/-: +8.0
ACIDITY: 1.4
RICE KOJI: HITOGOKOCHI
RICE KAKE: TOCHIGI 14
YEAST STRAIN: KYOKAI 901

FOOD PAIRINGS: Versatile with all foods, Grilled Fish, Paella, Smoked Fish, Fried Fish or Fried Chicken
CHEESE PAIRINGS: Foggy Morning, Prima Donna, Domaine de Village

Sake Sawahime Tokubetsu Honjozo

This inviting Honjozo is full of floral, quince, dried mango, anise and hazelnut aromatics. On the palate this sake has medium body and a smooth mouth feel.  Forward flavors of persimmon and black pepper with lively acidity gives this sake a beautiful balance.

Pair this with: Salmon teriyaki, chicken meatballs, glazed ham, spinach and bacon salad; served warm with Shabu Shabu

RICE POLISHING RATIO: 60%    

ALCOHOL: 15-16%    

SWEET/DRY: +5.0

FOOD PAIRINGS: Duck, Grilled salmon, Chicken meatballs, Glazed ham, Chinese, Italian, Cured Meats
CHEESE PAIRINGS: Comte, Mimolette, Pecorino

Sake Sawahime Yamahai Junmai (300ml)

From the Tochigi Prefecture.

This sake has aromas of gardenia, ripe kiwi, papaya, green peppercorn, aged comte cheese and notes of nutmeg, mushroom, toasted oat and yeast. This sake is bright, dry and lively with medium plus acidity, and full bodied on the palate with a long finish.

Rice Koji: Hitogokochi
Rice Kake: Hitogokochi
Yeast Strain: KT-901

FOOD PAIRINGS: Smoked or oily fish, fried Calamari and Fish Tempura, Fried Chicken 
CHEESE PAIRINGS: Foggy morning, slight ripe Brie, Raschera

Sake Uonuma Noujun Junmai

Dry and lean in the nose with hints of celery, pear puree and anise. On the palate this junmai is soft and creamy on the palate with rich, savory flavors of mocha, hazelnut, spicy vanilla, ending with crisp acidity.

POLISHING RATIO: 80%
ALCOHOL: 16-17%
SMV +/-: +2.0%
ACIDITY: 2.10%
RICE KOJI: Yamadanishiki
RICE KAKE: Yamadanishiki
YEAST STRAIN: Koshi Ibuki

FOOD PAIRINGS: Ideal with rustic Italian food, cheese and tomato centric or creamy pasta dishes

CHEESE PAIRINGS: Italian Raschera, Pecoria Reggiano

Sake Uonuma Noujun Junmai (300ml)

Dry and lean in the nose with hints of celery, pear puree and anise. On the palate this junmai is soft and creamy on the palate with rich, savory flavors of mocha, hazelnut, spicy vanilla, ending with crisp acidity.

POLISHING RATIO: 80%
ALCOHOL: 16-17%
SMV +/-: +2.0%
ACIDITY: 2.10%
RICE KOJI: Yamadanishiki
RICE KAKE: Yamadanishiki
YEAST STRAIN: Koshi Ibuki

FOOD PAIRINGS: Ideal with rustic Italian food, cheese and tomato centric or creamy pasta dishes

CHEESE PAIRINGS: Italian Raschera, Pecoria Reggiano

SonVida Malbec 2014

 

 

SonVida Malbec 2014 is made from 95% Malbec and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon

The most challenging of years yielded a great harvest, and a magnificent wine.  Frost in September, just as our Malbec was in budbreak.  Then a fierce Zonda wind in early November, just as the vineyard was flowering.  The result?  Yields low, BUT quality high.

SonVida Malbec 2013 celebrates intense fruit, plum, blackberry, even dark chocolate notes, with the optimal acidity and smooth tannins that are so typical of the award-winning Altamira district in the Uco Valley of Mendoza.  Above all, this latest Malbec from the Alegira vineyard boasts rare balance - a hint of the Old World in the best of the New World.


Review:

Decanter World Wine Awards 2017, 90 pts

 90 Points
Waterstone Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley 2015

Aromas of cedary oak, currants, black cherries and ripe plums are rich and concentrated on the palate. The firm tannins underlying the wine's core provide balance, leading to a long, lingering finish. The 2011 vintage is reflected in this wine, favoring balance to overt ripeness.


 "Subtle aromas of blueberry, blackberry and bramble berry follow through to full body, fine tannins and a fresh finish. Chewy and lively on the finish. Shows the tension of the great 2013 vintage in Napa Valley. Why wait? - James Suckling"

- James Suckling (January 2016), 92 pts


 
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Lyrarakis Za Za Zu Sparkling NV

Lyrarakis Za Za Zu Sparkling is made from Vilana, Vidiano and Muscat of Spina

A gentle sweet kiss of peach and juicy stone fruit that excites the senses and tickles the tongue with bubbly delight followed by aromas of a spring breeze bringing scents of apple and cherry blossom with hints of baby’s breath, lily and a garden of white flowers. There is a delicate sweetness to this wine that lends itself to enjoying with friends or peaceful contemplation.

Region: Alagni area, central Crete
Soil: Clay loam
pruning technique: Cordon trained, spur pruned
Altitude: 520m above sea level
Irrigation: Not irrigated
Yield: 8.5 tn/ha

Winemaking: Hand harvested in the last week of August. Grapes are vinificated separately. 
Blending was performed using internal tasting results, choosing the ones with the best characteristics of texture and freshness. Secondary fermentation adds subtle creamy complexity and gives the wine its attractive fine gas bead and mousse.

Alcohol: 10% ABV
Acidity: 5.7 g/L
pH: 3.15
RS: 4.29 g/100ML

Food pairing: Fruit paste desserts, vegetable risotto and a large variety of antipasti.