Aizu is a small city in the hinterland of Fukushima Prefecture. It's mostly known for its prestigious castle and for its samurai tradition that goes back many centuries. Besides these historical attractions this town's sake production is appreciated all over the country. The credit of this fame goes to the Suehiro Sake Brewery.
The history of this factory goes back to 1850 and this family business is now in its eighth generation. They strongly believe on the importance of keeping tradition alive and as such, continue to brew using local ingredients. Water plays an essential role in the process. Here the water is sourced from a spring that resides directly in the basement of the factory itself. The water gushing from the fountain near the entrance is exactly the same they use in their production.
The sake is produced using the Yamahai slow fermentation method and their devotion is awarded almost every year with both national and international prizes. This brewery has innovated with unusual products that range from the sparkling sake to several other derivatives made using the sake itself.
There is a free tour that starts every hour and the guide (in Japanese) will lead you all around the building to show and explain all the phases of the brewing process. Beside the machinery and warehouses there are various rooms with old documents and artifacts related to the history of the place. They even have a small concert hall where they occasionally organise shows .
At the end of the visit you will be also offered a free tasting of different kind of sake. Next to the shop is a charming yet relaxed cafe where you can try special sweets made using the traditional liquor.
The factory is located at about twenty minutes walk from the main station. The tourist bus also stops by.
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Born on a cold day in December 1984, I live in Verona, I am a computer engineer, loving martial arts, travel, Japan, food and of course photography. Photography is not only looking for beautiful pictures, it's more, much more; It means keeping memories, details, and moments that will inevitably become more and more blurred in our memory; it means waking up when everyone is sleeping; getting excited at the frost or under a thunderstorm when everyone is running away; learning to wait and knowing the surrounding environment; looking for new places and exploring forgotten ones, it means being able to see and enjoy what is surrounding us learning to observe with different eyes.