Ippongi Kubohonten Co.,Ltd

History of the brewery and its sake

In the days when samurai still roamed the streets, feudal lord of Katsuyama, Lord Ogasawara, gave the symbolic name ‘Ippongi’ to the sake brewed exclusively for him. The name ‘Ippongi’ comes from the Zen term 'Daiichigitai', which means ultimate truth.
When Ippongi Sake Brewery was founded in 1902, the company inherited this historical sake name.
Since the beginning, Ippongi has been brewing high-quality dry sake, and within 10 years of its founding, it became the top brand in Fukui prefecture. Ippongi continues to hold the top position to this day, nearly for 100 years.
Around the 1950's, having already made a name for itself with its excellent dry sake, Ippongi began to seek a way to create an even more elegant and refined taste. The taste Ippongi was aiming for was something pure with a beautifully articulated aroma and flavor.
To accomplish this, Ippongi turned to the Nambu brewing method (developed among brew masters from southern Iwate prefecture, which was famous for producing sake with a clean, clear taste). The company began employing a toji (brew master) well-versed in the Nambu methods, and since then Ippongi has consistently worked to produce quality sake which embodies these ideals of purity in both taste and aroma.  In the 89th Nanbu-Toji Sake Contest (2007), Ippongi won the grand prize out of 586 contestants, thus attaining the highest possible honor among all sake brewed with the Nambu method.

~About the Nambu-toji~
The Nambu-toji is one of the three most excellent brew master groups in Japan, along with Echigo-toji and Tamba-toji. Of this esteemed triumvirate, Nambu-toji is widely considered to be the premier group. It has a history of over 350 years, and the skills and craftsmanship of the Nambu brewing method have been praised throughout the history of sake brewing.

Special limited product
IPPONGI Le Premier Rouge

Sake brewing techniques of “Nambu” method is represented by its clean tastes without undesirable flavors. “Ippongi, Le Premier Rouge” is created, pursuing the essence of it. Please fully enjoy the incredible smoothness and silky finish, and graceful aroma and flavor brought by only a few percent of drips from the top-quality sake brewing “Daiginjo.”

  • Category: Daiginjo
  • Alcohol: It changes every year.
  • Rice: Yamadanishiki
  • Rice Polishing Ratio: 30%

Aged Daiginjo
IPPONGI Ippou

The top-quality Daiginjo has been aged at freezing temperature in a freezer (approximately –5℃/23°F). Please enjoy the flavor of graceful fruits that only the top-quality Daiginjo sake can provide as well as the round and mellow taste brought by being aged at freezing temperature.

【Award-Winning】

International Sake Challenge (Gold 3 / Silver 2 / Bronze 1)
International Wine Challenge (Silver 3)
U.S. National Sake Appraisal (Silver 3)
The Fine Sake Awards Japan (Gold 2)

  • Category: Daiginjo
  • Alcohol:17%
  • Rice:Yamadanishiki
  • Rice Polishing Ratio: 30%

Ippongi Fukurotsuri Junmai Daiginjo

This junmai daiginjo is brewed solely using “Koshinoshizuku,” which is a very rare, locally grown sake rice. The production is only about 2000 bales a year, and it has been produced and distributed only within Fukui Prefecture.
It has elegant and vibrant aroma of fruits, and soft and silky mouth feels that only comes from a special pressing technique called “FUKURO-TSURI.” The method is to collect sake liquid drips from the hung bags without applying any pressure. It is a labor intense and low-yield process.

【Award-Winning】

U.S. National Sake Appraisal (Gold 1)
The Fine Sake Awards Japan (Grand Gold 1)
International Sake Challenge (Bronze 2)

  • Category:Fukuro-tsuri Junmai Daiginjo
  • Alcohol:17%
  • Rice:Koshinosizuku
  • Rice Polishing Ratio: 45%

Pressing method “FUKURO-TSURI”
There are several ways to do “shibori,” pressing process – separating sake leeks and actual sake liquid. For example, squeezing moromi (sake mash) by machine (see photo 3 “Automatic moromi compressor”), or laying sake moromi bags in a big tub called Fune and softly press. (see photo 2 “FUNASHIBORI”).
For Ippongi Fukurotsuri Daiginjo, we use “FUKURO-TSURI” method (see photo 1 “FUKURO-TSURI”). This method is to hang the bags (each contains 10L of moromi) inside of a tank, and let sake liquid drip by its own gravity. The dripping sake liquid is collected and bottled. Sake using this method can be the most luxurious, because there wouldn’t be any outside pressure applied to. In fact, this method is often used for the sake to be entered for competitions. It is labor intense and high cost, and only small amount can be produced, so that the product usually becomes very expensive.

photo 1 “FUKURO-TSURI”
photo 2 “FUNASHIBORI”
photo 3 “Automatic moromi compressor”

Ippongi Funashibori Junmai Daiginjo

This sake is brewed solely using Yamadanishiki, the king of Sake Rice. It is fermented for a longer period of time at lower temperature, and a traditional pressing method called “Funashibori” is applied. These techniques bring out the great floral aroma and give the taste full of Umami and a gentle and long finish.

A traditional pressing method “Funashibori”
Moromi (sake mash) is usually processed with using an automatic pressing machine.
Instead, Moromi is poured into several cotton cloth bags (each bag contains about 10L of Moromi). These bags are laid down in a big tub called “Fune (ship),” and stuck on each other. The liquid, which is sake, come out by the weight of bags themselves and very soft pressure with the board from the top. The sake flow from the bottom of tub is collected into a container.
This method takes much longer time and allows us to collect less amount of sake, but the result of the taste can be more aromatic, elegant and soft.

【Award-Winning】

International Wine Challenge (Bronze 1)
The Fine Sake Awards Japan (Gold 1)

  • Category:Funashibori Junmai Daiginjo
  • Alcohol:17%
  • Rice:Yamadanishiki
  • Rice Polishing Ratio: 50%

Ippongi Amauruoshi-K Junmai Ginjo
~Sweet & Juicy Style~

It has the soft and sweet aroma of ripe peaches, and refreshing and juicy taste with long and elegant finish.
This sake is brewed solely using “Yamadanishiki,” which is known as the king of sake rice.

【Award-Winning】

The Fine Sake Awards Japan (Gold 1)

  • Category:Junmai Ginjo
  • Alcohol:16%
  • Rice:Yamadanishiki
  • Rice Polishing Ratio: 58%

Ippongi Karasawa-K Junmai Ginjo
~Dry & Crisp Style~

It has very refreshing aroma of fresh green, and very clear and crisp taste with rich in mineral, dry and sharp finish.
This sake is brewed solely using “Koshinoshizuku,” which is a very rare, locally grown sake rice. The production is only about 2000 bales a year, and it has been produced and distributed only within Fukui Prefecture.

【Award-Winning】

Slow Food Japan Kan Sake Award (Gold 1)
International Wine Challenge (Bronze 1)

  • Category:Junmai Ginjo
  • Alcohol:16%
  • Rice:Koshinoshizuku
  • Rice Polishing Ratio: 58%

Ippongi Junmai-shu

The sake has aroma like green apples and cool but moist and gentle umami that spreads on the palette, followed by refreshing acidity, which sharpens its aftertaste. It is brewed solely using “Gohyakumangoku,” the signature sake rice of this area, Okuechizen, underground water from Mt. Hakusan and the original yeast developed in Fukui Prefecture. This is the Junmai sake, 100% made out of Fukui Prefecture.

【Award-Winning】

Slow Food Japan Kan Sake Award (Gold 1)
The Fine Sake Awards Japan (Gold 2)
KURA MASTER (Gold 1)
International Wine Challenge (Bronze 1)

  • Category:Junmai
  • Alcohol:16%
  • Rice:Gohyakumangoku
  • Rice Polishing Ratio: 65%

Ippongi Karakuchi Junmai-shu

Among all products of Ippongi, which is known for their dry style, this sake could be the driest. It has light refreshing palette, and crisp finish going down on your throat with subtle pleasant bitterness. Please enjoy this driest choice from Ippongi, which tastes good for both chilled and warmed.

  • Category:Junmai
  • Alcohol:16%
  • Rice:Koshinosizuku & Rice made in Fukui
  • Rice Polishing Ratio: 70%

Red Ippongi Jousen Honjozo

This is one of the signature items of Ippongi brand, which hold the top market share in Fukui prefecture. It is known by a nickname, “Red Ippongi” in Fukui. It is a dry sake, and popular for its refreshing taste and crisp finish. Red Ippongi is standard sake served at most of restaurants in Fukui. This sake has been awarded a gold prize in Kan Sake Award at Slow Food Japan.

【Award-Winning】

Slow Food Japan Kan Sake Award (Gold 2)

  • Category:Honjozo
  • Alcohol:15~16%
  • Rice:Gohyakumangoku & Rice made in Fukui
  • Rice Polishing Ratio: 68%

Green Ippongi Kinjirushi

This is one of the signature items of Ippongi brand, which hold the top market share in Fukui prefecture. It is known by a nickname, “Green Ippongi” in Fukui. It is a dry sake, and popular for its round and soft taste, feeling like disappearing in the back of throat. This is standard sake often enjoyed at homes in Fukui.

【Award-Winning】

Slow Food Japan Kan Sake Award (Gold 1)

  • Category:Futsushu
  • Alcohol:15~16%
  • Rice:Koshinosizuku & Gohyakumangoku & Rice made in Fukui
  • Rice Polishing Ratio: 70%

GINKOUBAI

This product is recommended especially for the ones, who haven’t been interested in Umeshu (Plum liqueur) because of its heavy style.
Unlike an ordinary plum liqueur, which often has a heavy taste, Ginkoubai is made with sake and it offers a light and elegant style and the great harmony of sweet and sour flavor.
Plum liqueurs are usually made by soaking plums and sugar into distilled alcohol, and the taste becomes thick and sweet like honey.
We use a different method for making Ginkoubai. We first wait for the plums (from Fukui) to be fully ripe, and then press them slowly to extract pure plum juice with the pressing machine called “SAKAFUNE,” which is normally used for sake making. After that, we carefully blend that juice with sugar and our Junmai sake. This technique makes Ginkoubai to attain its lighter flavor and elegant sake undertones.

  • Category:Plum Sake
  • Alcohol:12.5%
  • Ingredients:Junmai Sake・Plum・Sugar

Ginkoubai Hannya Tou

Take a sip, and following the initial full-bodied sweetness enjoy the bold spicy flavor that spreads through your mouth. Guaranteed that you've never experienced a flavor quite like this until now. Just one drink and you'll be hooked, and wanting to recommend it to all of your friends.
It pairs very well with meat dishes or any dishes with sweetness or heaviness. It also can be recommended as after dinner drink with or without sweets.

※Please enjoy this product chilled, room temperature and straight. (without water dilution) In case you want to have it on the rocks, please be aware that the melted water can soften the sweetness but not the spiciness, so that the spiciness will stand out gradually.

  • Category:Plum Sake
  • Alcohol:12.5%
  • Ingredients:Sake・Plum・Sugar・Shochu・Red pepper

DENSHIN Rin ~Air of the brewery~

Junmai Daiginjo sake with a rich aroma that carries undertones of peaches and lychee, and an elegant taste full of depth and freshness.
This sake is brewed solely using ‘Koshinoshizuku,’ which is a very rare, locally grown sake rice. The production is only about 2000 bales a year, and it has been produced and distributed only within Fukui Prefecture.
As it’s brewed amongst the frigid winter air with our artisan’s careful handworks, this is the finest offer among the series of Denshin year-around products.

【Award-Winning】

International Sake Challenge (Silver 1 / Bronze 1)
U.S. National Sake Appraisal (Gold 1)
Slow Food Japan Kan Sake Award (Gold 1)
KURA MASTER (Gold 2)

  • Category:Junmai Daiginjo
  • Alcohol:16~17%
  • Rice:Koshinoshizuku
  • Rice Polishing Ratio: 45%

DENSHIN Yuki ~Snow~

Junmai Ginjo sake features calm aroma and pure crisp taste that remind you an image of a quiet, snow-covered sake factory. Denshin Yuki's soft aroma and clear taste have been praised by consumers who enjoy pure-tasting sake as well as by chefs who seek delicacy in sake to accompany with their delicate dishes.
This sake is listed on the menu of ANA (All Nippon Airlines) international flights First and Business Class in 2018.

【Award-Winning】

ANA (All Nippon Airlines) international flights First & Business Class sake 2018
Slow Food Japan Kan Sake Award (Gold 1)

  • Category:Junmai Ginjo
  • Alcohol:15~16%
  • Rice:Yamadanishiki & Gohyakumangoku
  • Rice Polishing Ratio: 55%

DENSHIN Ine ~Rice field~

Junmai sake features a smooth entering, a soft and round body, and its dry taste. It reminds you an image of fully ripe rice plants swaying gently in the breeze.
This sake is brewed solely using ‘Koshinoshizuku,’ which is a very rare, locally grown sake rice. The production is only about 2000 bales a year, and it has been produced and distributed only within Fukui Prefecture.

【Award-Winning】

Slow Food Japan Kan Sake Award (Gold 2)
The Fine Sake Awards Japan (Grand Gold 1 / Gold 2)

  • Category:Junmai
  • Alcohol:15~16%
  • Rice: Koshinoshizuku
  • Rice Polishing Ratio: 65%

DENSHIN Tsuchi ~Earth~

Oku-Echizen, where Ippongi brewery is located is known for being one of the most productive regions in Japan for growing the sake rice called “Gohyakumangoku”. We use this signature sake rice to create the well-rounded soft taste sake with a clean finish. It brings you a sense of the rich earth of the Oku-Echizen fields.

【Award-Winning】

International Wine Challenge (Silver 1)
Slow Food Japan Kan Sake Award (Grand Gold 1 / Gold 3)

  • Category:Honjozo
  • Alcohol:15~16%
  • Rice:Gohyakumangoku
  • Rice Polishing Ratio: 65%

Denshin Tsuchi is made with a distinctive brewing method!

"Denshin Tsuchi ~earth~" and its nouveau and unpasteurized version, "Denshin Fuyu ~winter~" are the only two fortified sakes out of all other Denshin items.
As we can find in the old book of sake brewing techniques called “DOUMOU SHUZOUKI”, written in the early Edo period (1687), Japanese knew that adding shochu (Japanese traditional single distillation alcoholic beverage) to moromi (sake mash) could influence in stabilizing the quality of sake, lightening and harmonizing the flavor and so on. It shows that Japanese has a long history of making fortified type sake.
Currently, about 75% of sake produced in Japan is fortified type. In general, the alcohol used to add to sake is the pure alcohol made from molasses, which is mostly imported from Brazil and distilled it to 95% of alcohol/vol. with using a continuous column still.
With that being said, our concept of Denshin items is to be the sake made from all ingredients from Fukui prefecture. Therefore, for the distilled alcohol we add for Denshin Tsuchi and Denshin Fuyu has to be made by ourselves. We produce rice shochu (from rice made in Fukui, using single pot still) to add to those 2 items. The technique using shochu as adding alcohol is called “Hashira-shochu preparation”, which was used in the Edo period.
We will be grateful if you can discover the attractive of fortified sake through its light and smooth texture that comes from fortified technique, which is a different direction from junmai type.

Limited seasonal product
DENSHIN Haru ~spring~ Muroka Namazake

Junmai Ginjo sake with soft and sweet aroma and juicy feeling like a ripe peach, followed by refreshing acidity, which sharpens the aftertaste.
Denshin Haru ~spring~ is a limited seasonal sake, without the pasteurization (Namazake) or carbon filtering (Muroka). a fresh nouveau version of Denshin Yuki (which is a white bottle year-around Denshin sake),

【Award-Winning】

International Wine Challenge (Bronze 1)

  • Category:Junmai Ginjo Muroka Namazake
  • Alcohol:16~17%
  • Rice:Yamadanishiki & Gohyakumangoku
  • Rice Polishing Ratio: 55%

Limited seasonal product
DENSHIN Natsu ~summer~
Fukuro-tsuri Junmai Daiginjo Namazake

This sake has distinctive pleasant fruity aroma, and elegant taste especially when it goes down.
Denshin Natsu ~summer~ is an unpasteurized junmai daiginjo which is brewed solely using “Yamadanishiki” (one of the high quality sake rice to be called the king of sake rice).
In the process of separating sake liquid from leeks, we applied special method called “FUKURO-TSURI,” which is to collect only drips of sake from the hung bags without applying any pressure. It is a labor intense and low-yield method.

  • Category:Fukuro-tsuri Junmai Daiginjo Namazake
  • Alcohol:16~17%
  • Rice:Yamadanishiki
  • Rice Polishing Ratio: 50%

Pressing process “FUKURO-TSURI”
There are several ways to do “shibori,” pressing process – separating sake leeks and actual sake liquid. For example, squeezing moromi (sake mash) by machine (see photo 3 “Automatic moromi compressor”), or laying sake moromi bags in a big tub called Fune and softly press (see photo 2 “FUNASHIBORI”).
For Denshin Natsu, we use “FUKURO-TSURI” method (see photo 1 “FUKURO-TSURI”). This method is to hang the bags (each contains 10L of moromi) inside of a tank, and let sake liquid drip by its own gravity. The dripping sake liquid is collected and bottled. Sake using this method can be the most luxurious, because there wouldn’t be any outside pressure applied to. In fact, this method is often used for the sake to be entered for competitions. It is labor intense and high cost, and only small amount can be produced, so that the product usually becomes very expensive.

photo 1 “FUKURO-TSURI”
photo 2 “FUNASHIBORI”
photo 3 “Automatic moromi compressor”

Limited seasonal product
DENSHIN Aki ~autumn~
Junmai Namazume Genshu

This Junmai sake has pleasant fruity aroma like melons. Soft sweetness and powerful UMAMI spread through the palette, followed by refreshing acidity, which sharpen the aftertaste.
Sake is brewed in winter and matured in the tanks during spring and summer, and as autumn comes, it is ready to be bottled. In this season, we have some sake set aside as the special seasonal sake, which is bottled without pasteurization and water dilution, as it just came out of the tanks. This special sake available only in autumn is called “Hiyaoroshi.”

“Hiya” means “cold” or “no heat treatment (pasteurization),” and “Oroshi” means “ship out.” The term “Hiyaoroshi” came from the meaning of “ship out without heat treatment.”
Back in the old days when there were no refrigeration systems, this special seasonal sake is only available to sake connoisseurs, who lived close enough to sake breweries. They enjoyed this roundness and strength of seasonal sake “Hiyaoroshi” as a pleasure of autumn.
Denshin Aki ~autumn~ is unpasteurized and undiluted, “Hiyaoroshi” version of Denshin Ine (which is a green bottle year-around Denshin sake).

  • Category:Junmai Namazume Genshu
  • Alcohol:18~19%
  • Rice:Koshinosizuku
  • Rice Polishing Ratio: 65%

Limited seasonal product
DENSHIN Fuyu ~winter~
Shiboritate Honjozo Namazake

This sake has very refreshing aroma and juicy feeling.
In early October, right after rice harvest, we start brewing sake for the year. The first tank we brew is Denshin Tsuchi (which is a brown bottle year-around Denshin sake).
At the end of October, the first fermentation tank will be ready to be pressed. Denshin Fuyu ~winter~ is the unpasteurized nouveau sake set aside from this very first tank. It is the seasonal sake, bottled right after being pressed (“Shiboritate”) and without the pasteurization, which bring out its refreshing aroma and juicy feeling.

Denshin Fuyu is made with distinctive brewing method!
Please see the explanatory text on “Denshin Tsuchi ~Earth~”.

  • Category: Shiboritate Honjozo Namazake
  • Alcohol:17~18%
  • Rice:Gohyakumangoku
  • Rice Polishing Ratio: 65%

Special limited product
DENSHIN First Class

This is the special limited junmai daiginjo sake with a deep aroma that carries undertone of fruits like peach, mango, pear, and banana. An elegant and mellow taste continues on to its long finish.
This sake is brewed solely using “Yamadanishiki,” which is known as the king of sake rice, and polished the rice down to 30%.

【Award-Winning】

ANA (All Nippon Airlines) international flights First Class sake 2009
International Sake Challenge (Trophy 1 / Gold 2 / Silver 3 / Bronze 3)
Nambu-Toji Sake Contest Junmai category (Gold 6)
U.S. National Sake Appraisal (Gold 5)
Kura Master (Platinum 1)
International Wine Challenge (Silver 3 / Bronze 4)
The Fine Sake Awards Japan (Gold 4)

  • Category:Junmai Daiginjo
  • Alcohol:16~17%
  • Rice:Yamadanishiki
  • Rice Polishing Ratio: 30%

Q.Visiting our sake brewery
A.Guided tour of the brewery is available by appointment only. Please contact us by e-mail(in Japanese)to ask about the availability.
- Monday - Friday (except National Holidays), between 9:00 and 16:00, from April to August.
- The tour takes about 30 minutes.
- The tour is only in Japanese language. The group must include someone who understands Japanese.
Q.Visiting our sake shop
A.Our sake shop called “Katsuyama-Shuho” is located across the street from our brewery, and open throughout a year.
- Open :  Monday - Friday   9:30 -18:30 : Saturday  10:00 - 17:30
  Closed:   Sunday & National Holidays
Q.Online shopping,
A.Most of “Ippongi Series” products can be purchased on our website, but the language available is only in Japanese, and we can only send products to addresses in Japan. “Denshin Series” products can’t be purchased from our website.
Q.Supply to the foreign countries, and our distributors
A.Our products “Ippongi” and “Denshin” series have been distributed to countries outside of Japan.
For more details, please directly contact the following distributors.

U.S.A.

JFC International Inc.

https://jfc.com/index.html#/

Canada

JFC International (Canada) Inc.

http://www.jfc.ca/

Mexico

JFC de MÉXICO, S.A. de C.V.

http://www.jfc.mx/#/

Brazil

JFC Brasil Imp.E Com.Ltda.

http://www.jfcbrasil.com.br/

Europe(United Kingdom, Germany, France, Austria, Sweden, Norway, Italy, The Netherlands, United Arab Emirates)

JFC International (Europe) GmbH

https://www.jfc.eu/

Russia

JFC Eurasia LLC

http://www.jfc-eurasia.com/

Australia & New Zealand

JFC Australia Co Pty Ltd. & New Zealand Ltd.

http://www.jfcaustralia.com.au/

Singapore & Malaysia

JFC Singapore Pte. Ltd. & JFC Malaysia Sdn Bhd.

http://jfc.com.sg/

Thailand

JFC (Thailand) Co., Ltd.

address : 1780 Tiew Hong Bangna Bldg., Debarantna Rd.,
Bangna Tai, Bangna, Bangkok 10260 Thailand

phone : (66)02-399-0226-7

Hong Kong

JFC Hong Kong Ltd.

http://www.jfc.com.hk/
https://ja-jp.facebook.com/jfchkg/ (Face book)

China

JFC-Sheng Yuan Hong (Beijing) Trading Co., Ltd.

http://www.jfc-syh.com.cn/

Taiwan

JFC Taipei Co., Ltd.

https://www.jfctaipei.com/en/login?ReturnUrl=/

Korea

CR TRADING

http://www.crtrading.co.kr/