The Champion Sake Award for 2019, sponsored by Japan Airlines, is Katsuyama Junmai Ginjo Ken, 2018. Rich perfumed aromas of red apple and flowers. Juicy impact but elegant style, bright and firm but fresh. Sophisticated finish, nice representation of style.
The Champion Sake for 2018 is Okunomatsu Adatara Ginjo(奥の松あだたら吟醸) Okunomatsu Sake Brewery(奥の松サケ・ブリューワリー) Pretty floral notes of honeysuckle, jasmine, peach, distinctive ripe pear and melony fruits. Clean and balanced. Fresh and gentle dry palate. Ripe stone fruits. Medium layered, creamy smooth structure, with a silky mouthfeel.
Kosuke Kuji from NANBU BIJIN CO. The ‘Southern Beauty’ is a special Junmai, its rich, but refreshing, medium intensity of aromas. Quality rice notes with some floral characters and marshmallow. Velvety texture, very subtle. Savoury umami on the mid palate. Dry, medium+ weight, with a long lasting taste
Masumi Nakano collecting IWC Champion Sake for the second time Dewazakura have won Champion Sake, the last time in 2008. The judges said that this Junmai from Yamagata is a youthful, dry style Sake with umami notes on the nose. Fresh green apple and spice, with a rich, soft mouth feel and good balance.
An emotional Hiroyuki Karahashi with his Aizu Homare Banshu Yamada Junmai Daiginjo. The judges said that this Junmai Daiginjo from Fukushima has an youthful Intense aromatic style,. Refreshing mango, jack fruit, tropical, cassis. A soft round integrated sake, Well balanced sweetness. A deserving winner of the IWC Champion Sake 2015.
IWC2014 Champion Sake Award sponsored by Japan Airlines - Jukusei Koshu Hidanohana Suiou 1995, Hirata Shuzojou Co Ltd A former Sake Trophy winner at the IWC has now taken the big prize, the Champion Sake for 2014! This aged Koshu tastes of cooked sugar, toasted pine nuts. Creme Brulée and caramel. Rich, round and velvety. Complex, fine balance between sweetness and bitterness.
IWC Champion Sake for 2013 is Daiginjo Gokujo Kitaya, Kitaya Co Ltd To make great sake it takes a huge amount of experience and a healthy dollop of confidence. The Kitaya brewery, situated in the Fukuoka prefecture on Japan's southern-most island of Kyushu, has an abundance of both. Made from the king of rice varieties - Yamadanishiki - the sake shows the immense purity, elegance and refinement that can be conjured when brewing mastery meets ideal climate.
Daiginjo Fukukomachi, from National Trading Inc Kimura Brewery from Tohoku in the prefecture of Akita, was praised for its soft and round character, exotic grapefruit and umami and a balanced texture and lovely length.