Toji (Head Brewer) Tomohiro Uchiyama, tasting and evaluating saké to ensure a consistently high level of quality sakés is produced every year.
The brewery has won a high number of accolades and awards for its Zaku and Suzukagawa brands both locally and abroad over the years.
The beautiful Ise Katagami labels of the Suzukagawa range of sakés, reflecting the brand which is steeped in tradition.
Zaku range of sakés, representing a modern and youthful tasting range of sakés.
Shimizu Seizaburo Shoten is located in Suzuka City, Mie Prefecture. It is the only saké brewery that is still in operation in the Suzuka area. The brewery which produces both the Suzukagawa and Zaku brands has won numerous awards both within Japan and abroad. It was recently ranked 1st Place at the World Sakagura (Saké Breweries) Ranking 2019 and 3rd Place for the year 2020 where saké breweries are awarded a point system according to the awards and prices they have won both locally and internationally. A reflection of the quality of sakés produced by the brewery year after year.
This brewery uses the pristine subterranean water and locally grown rice from the fertile fields of the Ise Plain in Mie Prefecture. Dedicated to producing high quality craft sakés, the brewery focuses on small-scale batch brewing. There are two brands produced by Shimizu Seizaburo Shoten. The first named Zaku, which means 'the work' to express their feeling that saké brewing does not end at the bottling stage, the 'work' is continued by the retail store that sells it to the restaurant that serves it and ultimately the connoiseur who drinks it. They want to create a saké that harmonizes smoothly with a diverse range of food with a modern approach to its taste and aromatics.
To understand the brand Suzukagawa we have to go back to a mythologocial time in Japan when Emperor Suinin requested his daughter Princess Yamatohime-N0-Mikoto find a suitable location in which to hold ceremonies for the Sun Goddess. After many years she arrived at Ise and decided to enact a Shrine there (the current famous Ise Shinto Shrine of Mie Prefecture). It is believed that in the chronicles of Yamato-hime-no, it was mentioned that the saké in this region was delicious described as umasaké. It is the intention of Shimizu Seizaburo Shoten to maintain this legacy of Umasaké under their Suzukagawa brand. In fact you can clearly see the word UmaSaké on the beautiful labels of the brand. Every label of Suzukagawa saké (different grades) has different Ise Katagami designs. Katagami is a special Japanese paper onto which intricate patterns are cut by hand to be made into stencils and then transferred onto silk or other fabrics to create the beautiful Japanese Kimono. This technique is over a thousand years old. Consumers can collect the full range of these beautiful labels. Suzukawa is loved and enjoyed by the locals in Mie Prefecture.