Significant Encounters at Expat Expo Tokyo 2022 Part 1: Asahi-Shuzo (朝日酒造), Makers of Kubota

Expat Expo was held on November 25-26, 2022, at Hamamatsucho-kan, Minato Ward, Tokyo. It, along with the concomitant International Job Fair, attracted 2,917 people and featured 182 exhibitors. We attended last year’s Expo and based on our experience in 2021 decided to return this year. Needless to say, which of course is needless to say, we were very much pleased at having done so. First, for those not familiar with this new annual happening, let us answer the question posed in the Expat Expo literature; i.e., “What’s Expat Expo Tokyo?” This rhetorical question is answered in seven parts, but we will confine ourselves to those that interest us.

  1. “Find expat-friendly services for your daily life.” In next week’s blog entry we will explore this issue in greater depth.
  2. “High-quality Japanese products are on display….” You will find reviews of two of these products below.

4. “Taste…food, sake and etc….” Well, we’ve never tasted an “etc.,” but even casual readers of this blog will know where we stand with respect to food and sake!

5. “Explore your destinations at EXPAT TRAVEL FAIR.”: We believe that traveling is fun, educational, and can be the key to the economic revival of small cities and towns throughout Japan. We have specifically addressed this issue on our blog, emphasizing the importance of gastronomic tourism in particular. Readers are encouraged to check out our series on unagi (eel), especially the last entry “Eel: The Editorial.”

#drinkingjapan #drinkjapan #Japanesesake #kubota #asahishuzo #niigata,

Among the high-quality Japanese products on display was some of the output of Asahi Shuzo, Niigata, the makers of Kubota. To give our readers some idea of the excellent reputation this brand enjoys we will cite John Gauntner: “Kubota is not so easy to find in retail stores, as it generally disappears from the shelves…quickly….”1

We were pleased with everything we tasted but were especially impressed with Kubota Junmai Daiginjo. Their promotional literature describes it as “Fruity and with a rich body…floral and expressive…with a light finish that will perfectly complement your favorite meal.” We concur and would like to add that we picked up on a very pleasant licorice nose. The ABV is 15%. But we felt that this fine product was eclipsed by Kubota Senjyu Akiagari/Ginjo. This is a genshu (undiluted) sake, coming in at 19% ABV. Senjyu Akiagari is a seasonal sake; fortunately for us, it was the right season! This is a nihon-shu with gravitas, in both the literal and figurative senses of the word.

1The Sake Handbook by John Gauntner (North Clarendon, VT: Charles E. Tuttle Company, Inc., 1997).

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