Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Kampai Media Launch 2014 [EVENT]

I was once again invited to the Kampai Toronto Sake Festival (@KampaiToronto)Media Launch once again this year (see last year post here & event post here).

The Sake Institute of Ontario (SIO) proudly announces the 3rd Annual Kampai Toronto, the largest sake festival of it's kind in Canada taking place on May 29th at the Distillery Historic District once again (get your tickets here for $70).

In conjunction with Kampai Toronto, SIO organized the first sake tasting competitions held in Canada; Toronto International Sake Challenge (#TISC). Over the course of 7 hours, a panel of 6 judges, blind tasting of 129 sakes from Ontario, US and Japan breweries competing in 6 categories (Honjozo, Junmai, ginjo, Daiginjo, Sparkling, Nigori).

The Panel of judges : Richard Beauroy. Richard Feldkamp, Michael Pataran, Zoltan Szabo, 
Micheal Tremblay and Hiro Yoshida

Here are the Category Winners of TISC 2014 :

Nigori Category : Rihaku 'Dreamy Clouds' Tokubetsu Junmai Nigori
Brewery : Rihaku Shuzo, Shimane Prefecture
Seimaibuai : 58% (Rice Polish rate of 42%)
Rice: Gohyakumangoku
Tasting Note: Unlike most Nigori, this was bright and lean in the mouth with a very soft sweet rice flavors with nuttiness and slight fruit flavors

Honjozo Category : Takatenjin 'Sword of the Sun' Tokubetsu Honjozo
Brewery : Doi Shuzo, Shizuoka Prefecture
Seimaibuai : 60% (Rice Polish rate of 40%)
Rice:Yamada Nishiki & Haenuki
Tasting Note: Bright flavors with melon, pear and banana aromas with a subdued acidity in the butter-tinged flavor. Clean, dry & rich, an easy drinking sake that offers depth and versatility.

 Daiginjo Category : Okunomatsu Sakura Dai-Ginjo
Agent : Kado Enterprise
Brewery : Okunomatsu Sake Brewery Co Ltd, Fukushima Prefecture
Seimaibuai : 50% (Rice Polish rate of 50%)
Tasting Note: Clear, Aromas of vanilla nut brittle, coconut water, and papaya custard with a silky, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a pineapple sorbet, meringue, and salted radish accented finish. A soft, alluring sake with a nice balance of fruit (not sure if I tasted all those aromas but this was definetly my favorite sake of the day)

 Sparkling Category : Okunomatsu Junmai Dai-Ginjo Sparkling
Agent : Kado Enterprise
Brewery : Okunomatsu Sake Brewery Co Ltd, Fukushima Prefecture
Seimaibuai : 50% (Rice Polish rate of 50%)
Tasting Note: Refreshing fine bubbles with hints of sweetness. Light nose of melon, honey and cotton candy, round rice flavor.

Junmai Category : Ryozeki Tokubetsu Junmai Yamahai
Brewery : Ryozeki Shuzo, Akita Prefecture
Seimaibuai : 60% (Rice Polish rate of 40%)
Rice: Miyama-Nishiki
Tasting Note: This clear tart Yamahai is a gamier and wilder with typical Yamahai's high acidity, but still elegant and smooth. Rich and well balanced with hint of herbs. Best served slight chilled or at room temperature

Ginjo Category : Taiheizan Chogetsu 'Clear Moon' Junmai Ginjo
Brewery: Kodama Brewery, Akita Prefecture
Seimaibuai : 45% (Rice Polish rate of 55%)
Rice: Akita Sake Komachi
Tasting Note: Consist of pineapple, tropical fruits and flowers aromas, it is light yet flavourful quality to it that produces a refreshingly elegant and rich taste

 Mio Sparkling Sake (Ozawa)
~ Sparkling Category Finalist

Kozaemon Shinano Miyamanishiki (That's Life Gourmet)
~ Junmai Category Gold Medal

~ Junmai Category Finalist

 Masumi Tokusen Honjozo (Churchill Cellars)
~ Honjozo Category Finalist

 JaBistro (@JaBistro222) provided food for the event

The always gorgeous Vivian Hatherell of Metropolitan Wines & Sakes (@MetroWineSake), partner of Ontario Spring Water Sake Company and also head of SIO

Get your tickets here before it's sold out 
For $70pp, you get to taste over 120 types of sake along with appetizers from some of Toronto top restaurants like JaBistro, Nome Izakaya, Hapa Izakaya, Bent and Zakkushi.
Oh and you would get to try all those winning sake at the event... Kampai!!!

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