Sake is a Japanese rice wine with a rich history and a wide range of flavors and styles. The "best" sake bottles to try can vary greatly depending on your personal preferences and what you're looking for in a sake. However, I can recommend some popular and highly-regarded sake brands and types to get you started:
BIJITO JUNMAI GINJO:
This sake is produced by the Kizakura brewery (founded in 1925). It benefits from an excellent source of water via a local underground stream. Fresh and light, it is a perfect introduction to nihonshu, one of Japan’s most traditional and symbolic beverages.
Profile; very well-rounded. Floral (white lilac), fruity (plums) and mineral (seaweed) notes. Rice powder, spices (coriander, pepper) and liquorice.
KAMEIZUMI JUNMAI DAI GINJO: One of the best Daiginjo of its generation. Beautiful acidity and liveliness, Kameizumi is fresh on the palate. The quenching sensation is a testimony to the purity of the water source. It's a Genshu, therefore a pure fruit of fermentation without any modification such as adding water or alcohol at the end of fermentation. It is perfect for aperitif, served chilled, or on any kind of fine food. A sake that will not disappoint!
TAKENO 2021 ASAHI KURABU: This Takeno Asahi Kurabu is an unfiltered, dry, very light and refreshing sake with a delicate aroma, similar to morning dew on fresh herbs. Fresh and fruity. Well balanced
SAYORI NAKADORI JUNMAI: Produced by the Asahara family brewery, which was founded in 1882, this saké is a nakadori junmaï. This means that no alcohol has been added (junmaï) and that only the middle part of the pressing is used (nakadori). Rather fruity and iodized, this nihonshu will suit all curious who wish to experience sake.
SANUKI CLOUDY SAKE: Creamy and aromatic, with a sweet and sour taste. This fruity sake is low in alcohol and is exhilarating at first taste. You can also enjoy this sake on the rocks!
Remember that the best sake for you depends on your personal taste preferences. Sake can range from dry to sweet, from light to full-bodied, and from simple to complex.
It's a good idea to try a variety of sake styles to discover what you enjoy the most. Additionally, sake is often enjoyed at different temperatures, so experimenting with serving temperatures can also change the flavor profile.
Enjoy your exploration of this fascinating beverage!