NAMA NAMA – IZUMI of the North. Ontario Spring Water Sake Company

sakeWell who knew Ontario could make Sake! IZUMI of the North is the Ontario Spring Water Sake Company and the 1st Ontario Sake Brewery (the only one from my understanding). I happen to discover them this past week while enjoying a stroll through the  Toronto Distillery District. Nestled in the cobble streets of this historic area of Toronto, is where IZUMI makes their traditionally Japanese rice nectar. I have always been curious about Sake – probably due to my fascination with Japanese culture … and alcohol – and supporting local business is important to me so it was only right to purchase myself a bottle.

Appearance : The reasonably priced 300 ml bottle with beautiful cultural design is clearly eye catching. The Sake is pure as water. Clear, clean, with maybe a slight yellowing but that may be a trick of the light or eye. The best descriptor for it appearance would be to say, clear and water white.

Aroma: With a medium intensity and an obvious reminiscent smell of boiled then cooled rice grain, its effect of smelling like a brewery and winery at once was my first impression. Distinctively present also are the aromatics of fruit and flower. More specifically spring floral, tropical fruits, and melon- fresh youthful banana, cantaloupe, even clove.

Taste: A sure warming presence of alcohol but not overbearing with a very slight rice grain sweetness. Much lighter in body and intensity than I expected with a reemergence of those aromas on taste but not as strong as in smell.

Mouthfeel: A residual slickness left behind much like after a glass of milk, but drying on the tongue – yet very light.

Finish: As the alcohol warmth subsides the flavors linger longer than expected, yet leaving you thirsty for more.

Overall: I was thoroughly impressed and very much enjoyed this! this product specifically needs to be kept refrigerated because it’s unpasteurized, which maintains a lot of that fruity character. I can see myself enjoying this as a lighter alternative to harder spirits or maybe substituted in cocktails to add a different dimension to the drink. Either way I would definitely recommend this others as a good introduction to the world of Sake. KANPAI!

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