Funaki Junmai Ginjo | Saké Review

Warmed sake is hospitality. Funaki from Fukui is a umami-rich, broth-like sake when warmed.

Funaki Junmai Ginjo | Saké Review

Characteristic Flavors Gradually Transition in Harmony

The barmaster Mutō-san brought out the good part of this sake with the art of warming. Not many bars and izakayas serve good kan-zake (warmed sake), but they merely support the drinking culture with their hospitality and technique.

Sakanakōjō Yashiro is a standing bar specializing in Japanese sake in downtown Nagoya, central Japan. At the entrance, there is a Shinto-shrine-style washbasin to wash our hands to purify ourselves. Of course, the bar had it from before the pandemic. Rational regarding public hygiene, but more importantly, we set our mind to tasting sake, the sacred drink.

At room temperature, the texture is soft and silky. Modest sweetness is reminiscent of light honey: round and matured. Acidity and bitterness are intense and subtle astringency follows. The finish is crisp, and pleasant aftertastes of umami and sudachi green citrus with fine, sharp acidity remainsudachi.

Warmed to around 55 degrees Celcius, the texture became rather fluffy but with frame. Then, the acidity spreads in the mouth, and another acidity and bitterness mix with perfect harmony, followed by gradually laying down the bitterness. Finishes nicely with a pleasant bitterness. Umami is reminiscent of a clam broth, and the ricey aroma of cooked rice lingers. Recommended served warmed, definitely!

Food Pairings

This brew marries well with umami-concentrated yet light-flavored food. Kurakake-mame, a local bean of the adjacent Nagano Prefecture, cooked with dashi broth, was a good companion.

Tasted at Sakanakōjō Yashiro (Nagoya, Aichi) in November 2017.

On the Label

Brewer: Funaki Sake Brewery at Fukui, Fukui
Type: junmai ginjo
Rice: Shinriki (60% polishing ratio)

Sake Concierge Umio translated this article from the Japanese text "しっかりした味わいの燗上がりする酒「富成喜(ふなき)純米吟醸 限定二百貫」."