Blended Sake from MIYAGI PREFECTURE
Best served COLD
AROMATIC • COMPLEX • RICH
Wine maker & port master blender Dirk Niepoort collaborates with François Chartier on exclusive new Japanese Sake at TANAKA 1789 X CHARTIER
In February 2022, amidst continued Covid restrictions in Japan, the blending components, crafted by Chartier, were sent from the sake brewery in Japan to Niepoort’s cellar in Vila Nova de Gaia in Portugal where Dirk and François sat together, with Daniel Niepoort and Chartier’s collaborator Nicolas Roché, for a blending session. “I’ve been very passionate about sake for many years, it’s one of my favourite drinks,” explains Dirk, who had not made sake before. “I had a very clear idea in my mind of what I was looking for. After tasting each sake component, I stubbornly made the blend I had in my head — trying to create the sort of sake that drives me crazy… A sake with umami, green tea expressions, some reduction and same saltiness.”
“When I started making the TANAKA 1789 X CHARTIER sake, I had the aim of crafting a sake for wine lovers with more natural acidity and umami than normal,” explains Chartier, who has written award-winning books on the aromatic science of “Molecular harmonies” and is considered one of the world’s best sommeliers and taste experts. “This collaboration with Niepoort is a confirmation that this was the right direction to take — I think it will have a huge impact when people taste it. We want to open the door for sommeliers and see sake on their wine lists — not just on sake lists in Japanese restaurants,” Chartier said.
“Blending is about being patient and waiting for the right moment.”, adds Niepoort.
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