Episode-38: Hot Sake (Kanzake) 101

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This week we’re tackling arguably one of the most misunderstood segments of the sake world:

Kanzake, often simply referred to as, Hot Sake.

For a complex web of reasons, the quality and general nature of hot (or warm) sake is still shrouded in generations of preconception and misconception. However along with an aggressive reexamination of “Why?” in relation to lost practices in food and beverage, kanzake is in the midst of a mini-resurgence, particularly in Japan. Over the past decade, not only the number, but the level of quality and creativity entrenched in dining and drinking establishments throughout Japan has grown dramatically. Even outside of traditional Japanese cuisine or izakaya dining, some of Japan (and the world’s) most lauded genre-bending restaurants have made elements of kanzake service not only a part of their beverage program, but a cornerstone to it. 

This week we have Justin Potts, Marie Nagata, Big Chris (Hughes) and Little Chris (Pellegrini) on the mics as we delve into kanzake history, experiences, terminology, service, and heating things up at home.

For the already-converted, hopefully you’ll find some hot tips (!) to add to your arsenal. For those still on the fence or for anyone that’s previously been burned (!) by less-than-positive experiences, hopefully you’ll find reason to set out on another expedition of the kanzake landscape.

Oh, and there’s a small supplement to this week’s episode over on our YouTube channel, as well!

Help more sake-lovers find the show by reviewing and rating us on Apple Podcasts. Let us know what you thought about this or any of our shows to questions@sakeonair.staba.jp, or say “Hi” to the team at @sakeonair on  Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.

If you happen to undertake any kanzake experiments at home, please do share the results and photos with us!

Take care out there everyone.

And don’t forget to Kampai!

Sake On Air is made possible with the generous support of the Japan Sake & Shochu Makers Association and is broadcast from the Japan Sake & Shochu Information Center in Tokyo. The show is a co-production between Export Japan and Potts.K Productions, with audio production by Frank Walter.

Our theme, “Younger Today Than Tomorrow” is composed by forSomethingNew for Sake On Air.