Kizakura Tsu no Honjozo
Your smooth and complex on-the-go honjozo in a cute bottle shaped like an ancient Japanese sake clay pot.
Kizakura Tsu no Honjozo is not your ordinary honjozo. It’s not a particularly aromatic sake but definitely more aromatic than a usual honjozo. And there is a reason for that. Kizakura Tsu is a blend of honjozo and aged ginjo sake, which gives it a bit stronger and deeper aroma and more complex taste you normally expect from honjozo. It’s a very smooth and balanced sake that can be paired with many Japanese, Asian, Western and other dishes. And I think ‘tsu’ in this case means ‘commute’. So it’s honjozo for commuters!
Kizakura Tsu no Honjozo has a very subtle and delicate aroma with green apple and honey notes, a bit of rice and alcohol. The sake has some complexity in the taste as well, but I would not call it complex. It’s clean and smooth with higher acidity, very balanced sweetness and silky texture.
It’s a very food-friendly sake. I can imagine having it with a wide variety of Japanese, Asian, Western and other dishes. But in my case, I had it with chicken meatballs (tsukune) and it was very tasty. The rich taste and full of umami taste of tsukune was perfectly complemented by smooth and relatively complex sake, which, however, didn’t take focus from the food. I had it slightly chilled to room temperature and it was delicious. However, the brewery recommends it slightly warmed up or even hot. As I didn’t have enough of it (it’s only 180ml), I could not test it this time.
Another thing I really liked about Kizakura Tsu no Honjozo is the bottle. It’s shaped like an ancient Japanese clay sake vessel you can see sometimes on old paintings or drawings from Edo period and even earlier. It looks stylish and cool. Kizakura brewery is located in Fushimi area of Kyoto, famous for its sake and amazing soft water. It’s a young brewery established only in 1925 (less than 100 years, can you imagine!) which combines the devotion to traditional sake brewing with innovative modern brewing technics. The brewery is also famous for its Kyoto Beer brand.