The Nikkei newspaper site has an article on the opening of the UK’s second sake brewery, Dojima in Cambridge.
The Osaka-based Dōjima Bakushu brewery held a ceremony at their new Cambridge site on 14 September 2018 ahead of the official opening on 1 October. The site is expected to produce up to 8,000 bottles a year, and also provide space for education and training.
The rice for brewing will be imported from Japan, and combined with local water. The UK Department for International Trade and other organisations assisted the brewery with finding a location and obtaining the necessary permits, allowing them to start testing their brewing process in the spring of 2018.
The site will also have a restaurant serving their own sake and accept students who want to study sake brewing, creating a kind of theme park for telling the world about sake.
The ceremony was attended by Kōji Tsuruoka, Japanese Ambassador to the UK, and local politicians. Yoshihide Hashimoto, head of the parent Japanese brewery, commented that one role sake plays is to communicate Japanese traditions and spirit, and that he hoped the new site would become somewhere breweries all over the world would come to.
The brewery will produce two labels initially, Dojima and Kakehashi, both junmai. Both will be priced at GBP £1,000 (around JPY 146,000), aimed at high-class restaurants.
I’ve been following the development of the Dojima brewery with interest, but as I didn’t get my act together in time to go to the British Sake Association’s anniversary dinner in October 2018 I don’t know when I’ll next have an opportunity to taste anything they produce if it’s at that price point.
The English Dojima site says that Kakehashi is a kijoshu called “Cambridge” aged for 3 to 5 years, so I’m not sure when it will be available. The site also says it’s suitable for further ageing and use as a commemorative gift.