Kyoto Shimbun 2014.8.6 News

Curry and Sweets: New Sake-based Products
Brewing Companies in Fushimi Ward, Kyoto

As the consumption of refined sake is shrinking, brewing companies in Fushimi Ward, Kyoto have been producing curry and sweets using refined sake commercially one after the other. Since these products have gained higher popularity than expected due to their secret ingredient of sake lees lending a subtle flavor, the companies expect that these products will become triggers for people to appreciate drinking sake.

The sales volume of domestic refined sake has decreased more than 30 percent over the past ten years because young people have become less fond of it. Under the influence of the municipal ordinance "Seishu de Kanpai Jorei," or toast with a cup of Japanese sake act, the companies are making efforts to develop new products in order to enhance the attractiveness of refined sake.

Saito Shuzo Co., Ltd. reports that retort-pouch curry, which includes sake lees from the brewer's rice "Iwai" that is produced only in Kyoto, is popular. In addition to gelato and "ponzu," or Japanese citrus sauce, with sake lees, which are already on the market, they will sell western-style sweets made from refined sake within this year. They enthusiastically said, "As young people are turning away refined sake, we want to convey the attractiveness of brand-name sake through food."

At Yamamoto Honke Co., Ltd., pudding, which is made of not only eggs and milk, but also refined sake, is selling well. Although this product is sold only at direct stores, its rich taste has become popular and the company has sold approximately 2,000 in total since it went on sale last April. In addition, they sell a cake which has refined sake spread on the surface and is matured for one month. Its rich taste has gained popularity in the female demographic.

Shoutoku Brewery Co., Ltd. sells three types of refined sake-based liqueur, such as "Kyo no Tomato Sake," at department stores and liquor shops in Kyoto City. Its spokesperson said, "Tomatoes go surprisingly well with refined sake, which appeals to women. We want people to know the refreshing, sweet taste of refined sake."

(translated by Galileo, Inc.)

Photo= Sake lees curry and seasoning sold by Saito Shuzo Co., Ltd. (Fushimi Ward, Kyoto)