CraftGene Craft_vol.0

Why do not you travel in Japan to see craftsmen? There are many charms in the rural areas of Japan to satisfy you.


>> P.6

6CraftGeneHewasreferringtoNanbuToji,abrewers’collectivefromIwate.Soitseemsthiscustomtracesitsrootstostartingthebrewduringthefallowseason.Thisclearedupalotofquestionsforme.WhatIonlyhadanabstractideaofnowbecameclearer,andexpanded.Itfeltgreattobeexploringthisnewmapofknowledge.Iwaslostinthought,suddenlyrealizingthatMr.Kashiwawasstandingbytheedgeofavatandcallingmeover.Invitedbythericetotakeapeek“Hereiswherethericeisfermentedandbecomesthemainmash.Canyouhearitburbling?”Bendingdownandlisteningclosing,Ihearadistantsoundlikewavescrashingontheshore.It’sthesoundofaninfinitenumberofeffervescentbubbles.Themoldistrulyalive!Itwassimplyamazing.Withtheyeastmash,mold,steamedrice,andwateradded,themashwasbubblingawayandmaturing.Theyeastisalsoreferredtoasthe“starter”andisoneitemusedtofermentthebrew.Thesteamedrice,mold,andwaterarealsoindispensable,ofcourse.Theenzymaticpowerofthemoldconvertsthestarchinthericeintoglucose,andtheyeastthentransformstheglucoseintoalcohol.Sakewasinthemidstofbeingcreatedbeforemyveryeyes.Mr.Kashiwaadded:“Theinitialfermentationisathree-stageprocessthatspansfourdays,overwhichweaddthemold,steamedrice,andwater.Nowit’sfermentingandishaleandhearty,butthistooktime.Trybendingdownandfollowingmylead.”Mr.Kashiwastoopsdownandextendshishandtowardsthetank,fanninghishandtobringthearomacloser.Idon’tknowwhatI’mdoing,butIfollowhislead.“WhatshouldIbeexpecting?Istheregoingtobeascent?”“Don’tbeshy,getabout15-20centimetersawayfromthemashandfanyourhand.”IdidasIwastold,andwassuddenlyblownaway.Iwasinstantlyinapanic,anddidn’tevenhaveachancetogetwordsout.TheinstantItookawhiff,mythroatclosedup,andIdoubledoverinacoughingfit.ItwasallIcoulddotocontrolmyselfandkeepfromcoughinginthedirectionofthetank.Icouldn’tevendetectascentassuch--orshouldIsay,therewasnotimeto.Itoverpoweredme.Itwasn’texactlyashocktothethroatornose,either.Itwasashockwiththeabsenceofstimulation.Itwasjustlikemybreathwasknockedaway,instantly.WhatonEarthwasthat?“Asyoucansee,themashissostrongthatitproducesapowerfulgas.”Iwasdoubledoverandchoking,butMr.Kashiwawasunflappable,continuinginhiscalmtone.Oh,Isee...Soitwasgasgivenofffromthefermentationprocess.Itwasquitecleartome,now--afull-bodyexperience.ButwhatatrickforMr.Kashiwatoplay!Oncefermentationiscompleteandtheunrefinedsakeisready,itisfilteredandrefined.Ifstrainedthroughawiderfilter,thesakebecomescludy--anigorizake.Youcan’tdenyhowdeliciousanigoriis.Thebreweryiskeptataconstant5degreesCelsiustomakethebestbrew.AftertalkingtoMr.Kashiwa,Ifinallyunderstoodwhysomanysakebreweriesarelocatedincoldregions.The“tome”stageisthefinalstepinathree-stageprocess.Thefirststepisthe“hatsuzoe”process,wherethekojimoldissprinkledontherice.Aftersometimeisallowedtopass,the“nakazoe”phaseinvolvesaddingdoubletheamountofriceandmoldontopofthat.Finally,the“tomezoe”processinvolvesaddingdoublethatamount.Thetemperatureiscontrolledfor20-30days,afterwhichtimetheresultingbrewreachesanunrefinedstate.


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