Established in 1141 AD, Sudo Honke is presently the
oldest kura still actively brewing in all of Japan (based on the oldest written records of brewing). The current president is the 55th generation president of Sudo Honke. The brewing philosophy of Sudo Honke is
simple, clean, and natural. Sake, he says, is made from rice. Good rice comes from good soil. Good soil comes from fresh and high-quality water. Such water comes from protecting our trees. Protecting the natural
environment makes excellent sake.
Everything brewed here is Junmai Ginjo or Junmai Daiginjo, and almost all of it is unpasteurized. Most of our sake has a wonderful fragrance,
and a truly memorable "fukumi-ka," or a secondary fragrance that arises from within your mouth as you sip. All of our sake is of the absolute
highest quality, ultra-premium sake brewed with extreme care and effort, from only the finest rice and water.
Mr. Sudo believes that sake brewing is closely tied in
with the environment, as well as with culture and tradition. "We need to continuously guard against further damage to our natural surroundings, for they provide us with all that we need, both physically and
spiritually. Sake brewing is but one of those gifts of nature. Because we are a small company, comprising only 23 local people, we feel a close connection to the community. We work hard at giving back as much as
we can to that community."
Size and Special Characteristics
Sudo Honke is very small, brewing only 800 "koku" a year. As one koku (the traditional measure of sake in Japan) is 180 liters, only
144 kiloliters is brewed here each year, in the traditional brewing season which runs from late October to early April. This controlled volume allows Sudo Honke to put hand-made care into
all its special junmai nama sakes.
Notable Quotes from Master Sudo
"Beyond the wonderful, rich slightly soft water we are endowed with for
brewing, we have revived a strain of rice that grew about 2000 years ago discovered in ancient ruins near our brewery. Now, we use that to brew a sake called Sansensomoku. Try it and taste the life in Japan 2000 years
Toji (Master Brewer) and Kurabito
Mitsuo Fujiwara and Hideo Segawa together perform the duties of the toji at
Sudo Honke. Both are from the Nanbu Toji school, and hail from Iwate Prefecture in northern Japan. They travel down each winter with their hand-chosen team of assistant "kurabito"
sake brewers. Together, this team of six men work hard using their skill, experience and intuition to brew the fine, fragrant and light sake we are so proud of.
2125 Obara Tomobe
Nishi-Ibaraki Gun, Ibaraki
309-1701 Tel 81-296-77-0152 Fax 81-296-77-4628
-- 81 is Japan country code; within Japan, dial 0296-77-0152 --
Web: www.sudohonke.co.jp (J & E)