Joy of Sake celebration returns to Tokyo on Nov. 7 -- Nov 06
The Joy of Sake, the world's largest sake tasting outside Japan, returns to the motherland of nihonshu on Nov. 7 with a sumptuous celebration of the pleasures of the cup.

The event will feature 384 sakes representing every brewing style and region in Japan, with appetizers from 14 top Italian, French, Spanish, Chinese and Japanese restaurants and a special appearance by Japan's newly crowned Miss Sake.

This is The Joy of Sake's fourth appearance in Tokyo and the last stop on its annual tour. It follows last month's New York event, where sake fans from as far away as Boston, Baltimore and Toronto helped push attendance to 700; and August's Joy of Sake in Honolulu, which drew a record 1,600 enthusiasts, some flying in from neighbor islands and the West Coast.

More than half the 384 sakes available for tasting are in the daiginjo category. For the first time in its 13-year history, one junmai and one ginjo achieved perfect scores from all 10 judges at the U.S. National Sake Appraisal, the professional blind tasting that precedes the Joy of Sake and is conducted under the auspices of Japan's National Research Institute of Brewing.

The two-Koimari's "Saki Junmai Ginjo" from Saga and Benten's "Tokubetsu Junmai Genshu Dewa no Sato 100%" from Yamagata-attracted keen interest in New York and Honolulu. Also for the first time, a daiginjo from the U.S.-Shochikubai's junmai daiginjo from Takara Sake USA in California-won a gold award.

The Joy of Sake was first held in Honolulu in 2001. Organizers there, combining respect for sake traditions with the belief that no party is complete without good food and good friends, opened up that inaugural Appraisal's 124 entries for a free-spirited public tasting. Since then imports of premium sakes to the United States have more than doubled and the drink enjoys rising status as a delicious, versatile, accessible beverage across the country.

Restaurants participating in this year's Joy of Sake in Tokyo are Al Porto, Jukei Hanten, Ningyocho Imahan, Passo a Passo, Koshi no Kanbai Manjia, Danlo, Komahachi, Toritama, Shirogane Baru, Fukuwauchi, Kasumicho 301-1, Capolavoro, Uraya and Suzuya.

The event is scheduled for Thursday, Nov. 7, 2013 from 6 to 9 p.m. at the TOC Building in Gotanda. Tickets are ¥8000 or $85 and are available through PIA and E-Plus or through the online ticket store at

For more information, please go to or contact Jan Nagano at

News source:
Oct 19
The estimated number of visitors to Japan in January-September rose 17.9 pct from a year earlier to 21,196,400, topping the 20-million mark at the fastest pace in any year, the Japan National Tourism Organization said Wednesday. (Jiji)
Oct 19
Ever wondered where the best place to enjoy a refreshing Mojito in Japan is? Well, 300Bar, with three locations in Tokyo's Ginza district, is a serious contender. It has just been awarded by the Cuban Embassy in Tokyo 'The most authentic Mojito in Japan' certificate. (Japan Today)
Oct 18
People dressed as samurai warriors have marched in a procession at a World Heritage site in Nikko, north of Tokyo. (NHK)
Oct 17
Amid the gloom and struggle that Osaka has gone through in recent years, a tourism boom has been an unexpected boon for Japan's gritty second city. (Japan Times)
Oct 17
Japanese travel company H.I.S. Co. said Monday it will open 10 more hotels staffed by robots in Tokyo, Fukuoka, Osaka and Kyoto by March 2019. (Kyodo)
Oct 16
The government expanded the no-go zone around Mt Shinmoe in Kyushu on Sunday as volcanic activities intensified. (Japan Today)
Oct 16
The Japan Tourism Agency plans to launch model projects in early December to consider ways to attract more people, including foreign tourists, to snow resorts amid the declining skiing and snowboarding population. (Jiji)
Oct 11
Iwakura in Aichi Prefecture is striving to make the central Japan city a mecca of yo-yos, which were a big hit in the country in the 1980s and 1990s. More than 10 million people across Japan are thought to have played with them. (Jiji)
Oct 10
People in Chichibu, a city north of Tokyo, launched hand-made rockets on Sunday to express their gratitude for the season's harvest. (NHK)
Oct 10
An autumn festival featuring dazzling floats has begun in the central Japanese city of Takayama. (NHK)