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Dassai is one of the best sake in the world. The name Dassai actually means ‘otter festival’. As the name suggests, it is made in Japan and the word Dassai was actually used long ago in the Yamaguchi Prefecture as there were many otters frolicking in the nearby rivers. Asahi Shuzo Company’s Dassai is unimaginably smooth and graceful, complex yet inviting and not to mention extremely refreshing. Meant to be savoured, the Dassai sake is a treasured bottle indeed.
Popular worldwide, Dassai's most popular selections include the Dassai 23, Dassai 39 and Dassai 45 and Dassai 50. A trendsetter in the industry, Dassai’s brews are all extremely unique. If you are wondering what the numbers following the brand name are, it actually represents the seimaibuai, or rice polishing ratio. The seimaibuai is the remaining percentage of each grain of rice after it has been polished. It also indicated the aroma, flavour and refinement of the sake.
The sake drink has risen in popularity, especially in recent years. Dassai is responsible for helping change the perception of sake as previously, it had a reputation of being a cheap beverage, served hot to mask its mediocrity. However, in recent years, Dassai sake reviews have shown an increase in the love for this liquid jewel.
The process of making this particular Japanese sake is a time consuming and stringent process. The rice, which is the main ingredient for sake, is all washed by hand after the water content in it has been restored to its original value. The rice washing technique is normally only used for daiginjo to strictly control the water content of the rice to an accuracy of less than 0.3%!
The rice is then steamed using the traditional wagama. Labour intensive, it is worth it in order to get the best possible steamed rice. Rice is steamed in order for the rice to keep its enzymatic power during the long fermentation period of 45 days. Rice then has to go through the koji making process - the most important process of it all. Koji making keeps the yeast suitably supplied with glucose so that sake fermentation speed is controlled at optimal levels. The rice for Dassai’s koji is made by hand!
The rice is then fermented at a low temperature for a long period of time. At Dassai’s brewery, everything is done by the hard work of humans, including temperature control. Only the pressing and filtering of the mash is done by a centrifuge machine. Seeing how much work is put into creating a single bottle, it is no wonder why some claim Dassai sake is the best sake in the world.
The sake at Dassai is Junmai Daiginjo, which means it is sake that is made from ‘pure rice’ and no additives are added.