Aizu is a basin sandwiched between the Echigo Mountains and the Ou Mountains, with deep snow in winter and severe heat in summer. This climate with different temperatures, the large rivers that flow into the Sea of Japan, and the fertile land grow good quality and delicious rice. Hanaharu uses 100% Aizu rice for sake brewing. We believe that Aizu's local sake can only be made from Aizu rice. Rice grown in the nature of Aizu, which is hot and humid in summer and cold in winter, may resemble Aizu people. Hanaharu's main product, which develops pure rice sake, is Maihime, a variety that is resistant to the cold and has a large body. For Junmai Daiginjo Sake and Daiginjo Sake, we use "Yume no Kaori", a rice suitable for sake brewing in Fukushima Prefecture.
Winter snowfall is nostalgicly stored in magnificent mountains and basins and polished to good quality groundwater. Only delicious water can produce the delicate taste and aroma of sake. Aizu is a basin surrounded by mountains on all sides. It is a land with a lot of snow and abundant water. Where there is delicious water, there is delicious rice and there is delicious sake.
About 80% of the ingredients of sake are water, about 15% alcohol, and a few percent extract, and "water" accounts for a large proportion. Water has some ingredients that are effective and some that are not. Water containing an appropriate amount of inorganic components necessary for yeast growth is suitable for sake brewing. Water that you can make and drink deliciously is also suitable for sake brewing. The water quality of Aizuwakamatsu is groundwater with a moderate altitude, and it is easy to give "sweetness" and "thickness" to sake. It seems that it is easy to put out "sa".
In order to bring out the clean taste of Wakamatsu's water quality, it is necessary to polish the rice whiter and ferment it at low temperature for a long period of time, or reduce the hardness of the water. Hanaharu Sake Brewery has introduced an ultrapure water production system that does not energize electricity so that the hardness of water can be changed according to the type of sake. Various measures have been taken so that even if the same water is used, the taste will be different. I think it's fun to think about water when comparing sake from various breweries and regions.
By storing freshly-born sake, you can bring out the umami, mellowness, and deep taste. The snow and cold weather in Aizu is the best climate and climate for this storage. By adding techniques devised from our commitment to goodness to these elements, we can create even better sake.
Hanaharu is proud of 100% self-polished rice. The machine prevents the rice grains from cracking during rice milling, and the rice is slowly and carefully milled at a low temperature so that the rice does not deteriorate. In addition, it is a luxury unique to self-polished rice that the rice can be sifted again to align the grains. Hanaharu's sake, which is particular about rice polishing, has the flavor of rice.
The round mark on the rice bag is the mark of the grade of rice, first-class rice. We use 49% polished rice "Yume no Kaori" suitable for sake brewing in Fukushima prefecture. Since 51% of the rice is scraped, the grains become round. The central part of sake rice, Shinpaku, is left behind.
If the rice is still milled, it will have rice bran, etc., so we will perform the "rice washing" work. In the cold, the brewers wash it carefully by hand using cold water. It is shared and done quickly and with good rhythm. It seems that it is not good if you wash it too much or soak it in water too much.
Steam the rice washed with a large razor. While spreading it evenly using a machine, cool it so that the aspergillus can easily grow and sprinkle the seed koji. Measure the temperature firmly. We aim to make sake more delicious by balancing what is done by the brewer's hands and what is done by the machine.
Jiuqu brewing is said to be the most important in sake brewing. The room called Muro / Jiuqu room is located at the end of a heavy door with strict temperature and humidity control. Steamed and seeded rice is lined up in the machine, and aspergillus is propagated.
"Cut back" is performed so that the temperature during breeding does not rise too much. An "automatic koji making machine" is used, but in the end, the brewer's hands check the feeling and loosen it. After that, the Jiuqu that has been worked in the Jiuqu room is spread and dried. This is called "de-jiuqu". And the pure white Jiuqu is completed.
Mix steamed rice, sake mother, and koji to make moromi. When fermented, it has the taste and aroma of sake. At Hanaharu, we use "Himehan-zukuri," which is made from porridge-shaped rice. This makes it easier to manage proper temperature control and agitation with a computer program.
In addition, large-scale fermentation is also carried out at low temperatures to maintain good sake quality, and even ordinary sake has a ginjo aroma. And squeezing is also done at low temperature. It is no exaggeration to say that the polite treatment of any sake is in the Daiginjo class.
It is a method of hanging a liquor bag containing mash and collecting naturally dripping drops (raw sake), which is also called "tobintori". Since no pressure is applied, the sake has a delicate taste with no unpleasant taste and a gorgeous aroma. It is a luxurious method that is done manually by the brewers without using a machine, and is used for exhibited sake and Junmai Daiginjo.
It is a place to ferment the raw materials sent from the raw material processing building. The large fermentation tank is a tank for preparing 200 stones (36,000 liters). A maximum of 13 tons of white rice can be prepared per bottle. The finished raw liquor is about 37,000 liters, and it is possible to produce a little less than 30,000 bottles of commercial liquor in terms of 1.8 liters at a time.
Most of our brewing is done with Himehan brewing.
Kake rice is steamed, cooled, and then the rice jiuqu and enzyme are added and pumped to the fermentation building, where it is prepared in three stages. The moromi mash made in the next building is sent back to this building and squeezed, and separated into raw sake and sake lees. Raw sake is sent to the storage building by piping.
There are 62 60 stone tanks (about 10,000 liters).
The raw sake sent from the raw material processing building is burned (sterilized) and stored and managed according to the quality of the sake. The inside of the building is kept at a constant temperature (18 ° C) by air conditioning equipment.
Before filling the bottle, it is mixed, filtered, split water, etc. and sent to the filling building.
All use groundwater. The brewing industry needs water to do anything. Not only do we prepare sake, but we also use a large amount of water, from split water to bottles and washings. Our well is a deep well of about 100m, and pumps 300 tons of underground water from Mt. It has cleared 40 items of water quality inspection. You can drink the groundwater flowing near the shop entrance.
There is a "direct sales shop Kouzashi-gura" in the office building of Hanaharu Sake Brewery Co., Ltd. Here, you can see the products directly, taste them, and then purchase them. There is an assortment of products unique to the brewery, and some products can only be purchased here. Try to find your favorite one.