Horse Bazaar’s first day of the Craft Sake Week showcase started last Tuesday, with both “Retsu” and “Kokuu” certainly being a hit!
As mentioned in our previous article, Craft Sake Week started on Tuesday, the 2nd of May and runs every Tuesday until the people of Melbourne get a taste of 11 different craft sake breweries’ products. Every second Tuesday, the products up for tasting will be swapped out, so make sure you don’t miss out on trying each one!
This fortnight’s sake is crafted by Hokkaido-based brewery, Takasago Shuzo. (Available on the 2nd and 9th of May).
Tokubetsu Junmaishu “Retsu” ($12)
Junmaishu “Kokuu” ($11)
The sake is very reasonably priced as you get quite a bit of it, and if you’re a fan of Japanese food, they even have an Otsumami Set that is even greater value! You get to try their otsumami set, which has been specifically made to match with the sake!
On its own, the Special Otsumami is $12, but you can also purchase it as a set with both types of sake for $20!
Of course, when trying the sake, we opted for the Otsumami Set to really make the most of our sake tasting experience!
With a slightly lower alcohol content than some Junmai-shu, “Kokuu” is not an overly strong sake, so it’s perfect for first-timers! It is made with “Ginpu” a rice that has been grown lovingly in Hokkaido as well. “Kokuu” has sweeter notes and a refreshing edge.
“Retsu”, on the other hand, is dry in character, but rich in flavour. Being a “Special” Junmai-shu it has a pure rice taste. It’s smooth, easy to drink and goes down beautifully with the otsumami set!
The Otsumami Set on this day comprised of chicken skewers marinated in miso and koji yeast! Koji yeast is said to be very good for keeping your skin soft and supple, and this is a delicious way to get soft skin! It was also served with grilled eggplant, pickled daikon and veggie inari.
Inari is a type of sushi and it was absolutely divine! I could have eaten a whole plate of them! I would like to say that one particular item in the set stood out, but it’s difficult since everything stood out in this dish.
Horse Bazaar is perfect for this showcase as it has a vibrant atmosphere, great music and is a good spot for a bite to eat and some sake! The house menu itself has an amazing range of options and they have an extensive drink list. If you’re a fan of Japanese cuisine and drinks, I highly recommend it! (p.s. their veggie curry is absolutely delicious!)
Organiser of the event, Akito Kurokawa sported a Hokkaido happi coat on the night, with “I love Hokkaido” and written on the front and “Drink lots of Hokkaido sake” on the back in support of his home prefecture and the sake of the week!
The next brewery being showcased is Bunraku from Saitama Prefecture! Their craft sake will be available on the 16th and 23rd of May at Horse Bazaar. We will keep you updated on this event over the coming weeks as much as we can! Definitely check it out if you have the chance!