Spotlight on Sake: Tosatsuru, Nabeshima & Urakasumi

Sake tasting at Hedonism continues. After four from the Tosa Shuzo distillery [blog], here are four more, this time from Tosatsuru, Nabeshima & Urakasumi breweries.


Tosatsuru Azure [2017/18] Ob. [Ginjo] 15% [70.2cl]

Sake Tosatsuru Azure.jpg

Azure is made in SW Japan using deep sea water and Yamada Nishiki rice [“the absolute best”], with a 55% polishing ratio. Sourced just off-shore, it is said the local Muroto Cape sea water is exceptionally free from impurities and possesses a particularly advantageous mineral content.

  • N: Soft yet crisp & fresh. More Sauvignon-like than the previous Cava-like noses.
  • T: Champagne/Cava to taste however.
  • F: Decent length [white] wine finish, and a little salty – from that sea water perhaps?
  • C: All the efforts gone into making this unique sake result in a thoroughly subtle style.


Tosatsuru Tenpyo [2017/18] Ob. [Daiginjo-genshu] 17.5% [50cl]

Sake Tosatsuru Tenpyo.jpg

With a 40% polish, this uses the same Yamada Nishiki rice as the Azure. Considered a special occasion sake, apparently this is drunk by Japanese families to celebrate New Year’s day. Perhaps this explains the slightly higher abv?

  • N: A softer, lighter style than the others.
  • T: ,.. but with a similar wine-y pong to the sparkling John as well as cereal & fungal notes like the Keiretsu.
  • F: Lingers somewhat.
  • C: Like the Azure, a far more subtle style in comparison to the previous set of four.


Nabeshima 100% limited edition [2017] Ob. [Daiginjo] 17.6% [70.2cl]

Sake Nabeshima 100%.JPG

Nabeshima means ‘The road to…’

  • N: Very much like the Sparkling John in aroma, albeit more floral.
  • T: Ok, that’s very different to what’s gone before. It’s meaty/hammy and all sorts more.
  • F: Edgy-clean.
  • C: I like this a lot, but the Keigetsu ’45’ still has the edge.



Urakasumi’s Umeshu plum liqueur [2017/18] Ob. [junmai] 12-12.9% says ‘Mild Junmai-shu (pure rice sake) with extract of local ume produced in Miyagi’.

Sake Urakasumi's Umehsu Plum wine.jpg

  • N: Plums, prunes, marzipan [Miage-flam], cherries,…
  • T: A plum tipple indeed with a subtle savoury-sweetness laid over a bitter note bed.
  • F: We see a little lactose acidity at the end.
  • C: Given it’s not overly sweet, it’s possibly even more an aperitif than a digestif. Certainly very likeable juice.







Sake sake sake

2 thoughts on “Spotlight on Sake: Tosatsuru, Nabeshima & Urakasumi

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s