Since 1743, Hakutsuru have been creating fine sakes in Nada, Japan, accounting for more than one quarter of Japan’s total sake production. The Hakutsuru brewery, is the top sake producer in the area with 100 hard working brewers crafting sake loved not only in Japan but all throughout the world.
The symbol of Hakutsuru, the white crane (graceful and refined bird), has been their inspiration and name as well as being an auspicious symbol for Japan.
Each of their wide variety of sake has individual character and represents the diversity of sake today and provide enjoyment at different moments.
Hakutsuru founder, Mr Jihei Kano began making sake in Nada since 1743.
The location is exceptionally well suited for making Japan’s finest sake because of the confluence of four geographic elements: locally grown sake rice, a first-rate natural spring water, cold winds from the Rokkō mountains and a Toji brewing culture more than a thousand years strong.
Great Rice - A source of exceptional rice is crucial for fine sake. The “Yamada Nishiki” strain – known as the ‘king of sake rice’ has been grown in the Hyōgo prefecture since the early 20th century. It has a large strong grain which withstands polishing during sake production. During this century Hakutsuru set about creating their own, exceptional rice, by cross breeding Yamada with Tankan-Wataribune. It took eight years to create “Hakutsuru Nishiki” rice, which gained official registration from Japan’s Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries in 2007.
Special Water - Their best sake contains Nada spring water, considered to be the finest water for making sake. This heavenly natural wonder comes from rains that percolate from the Rokkō mountains. A share of this spring water is piped directly into the Hakutsuru brew house.
Toji Culture - Great sake depends on the toji - the master brewer who leads a team of skilled craftspeople. Toji were traditionally women, and the word once meant ‘an independent woman’. Generations of toji men and women have lived, worked and trained in the district, which has become known as the Nadagogo, the collective name for the five sake-brewing towns of Nada – Nishi, Mikage, Uozaki, Nishinomiya and Imazu.
Today’s brewing methods preserve the best of time-honoured practices alongside modern ones in pursuit of a supremely refined sake.
Key Moments in the Production of Hakutsuru Sake:
Tobaya is a Japanese vinegar producer that has been in business for over 300 years. They use traditional methods to produce their vinegars, using only the highest quality ingredients and carefully controlling the fermentation process to ensure the best flavour and quality.