I was invited to sample a wonderfully unique brand of Taiheizan sake at Teppan Kenta by Kimura Enterprises – a large Japanese distributor. Established in 1879, Kodama Brewery is located in the heart of Akita and sources natural spring water from the area’s tallest mountain for the production of their fresh sake. TEppan Kenta has created special dishes to enhance the natural flavours found in this old style way of brewing sake.
Unfiltered (normally not a favorite) Honjozo Nigori is light, fruity finish, lightly creamy. Paired with a crispy grilled chicken marinated in rosemary that combines so nicely together I wouldn’t have one without the other. It’s my favorite pairing – surprisingly.
Kimoto Junmai is still processed naturally, like it was done it long ago before any technology. Clean on the nose, it takes half a year to ferment. Subtle at first, then explodes into a bouquet of flowers. Lightly seasoned Angus strip loin seared to perfection is served with wasabi, soy and Ponzu. The charcoal exterior and raw texture of the protein gives the sake a smoother flavor. Love it!
And finally my favorite Tenko, Junmai DaiGinjo. At first notes are flora,l deep and strong, when paired together with salmon belly and fresh avocado the sake exudes cream and melon. Out of all my travels I have never experienced something so complex and ancient in its flavour, evoking strong feelings and ties to another time and culture. It is a magical experience, one every sake lover MUST try!
Okay, now finally. I also ordered a tangy cod roe and cheese Dashimaki bonito flakes move almost as though they’re animated adding balance and smoke to the dish. Okonomiyaki DX (Hiroshima style) Japanese pancake with pork, squid and shrimp – great with Tenko! I wish this place was open for breakfast…