Why Is Choosing Sake So Difficult?
The question from which Kurashu was born. Benjamin (the handsome one) came from a food & beverage background and was always very much into wine, while Philipp (the cute one) has been a foodie all his life. Yet when it came to sake it was hit or miss for years. The end result was that they would drink the same few bottles over and over again, which became a bit of a bore.
We started chatting to others about this problem, and both Japanese and foreigners often confirmed they had the same struggles. The result was that many gave up trying to drink sake at home and would only drink it in an Izakaya or other Japanese restaurant. In every case though, people mentioned that discovering new sake was a slog.
Discovering sake should be enjoyable.
Once we came to that conclusion and we decided to do something about it, the seeds of Kurashu were sown. In the span of 2 years, we visited some 40 breweries, took several sake courses (the WSET Level 3 being among them), and of course, underwent the incredibly difficult task of casually imbibing a variety of sakes day in and day out.
After 2 years of hard work, we were ready and incorporated Kurashu Co. Ltd. Eventually in November 2021 we launched this web-shop, which has the following two express goals.
Our First goal
Matching People To Sake
Our sake quiz and the associated algorithm are like a personalized guide. It analyzes our customers’ tastes and recommends the general direction that their sake taste goes in. This direction is then refined further as a customer reviews their purchases.
Important to note is that while every user gets assigned to one of 7 categories, the recommended sakes are unique to them and might be from different categories. This is because we rank each sake on 13 parameters and your own taste preferences might include factors that span across these categories.
If you’re ready to find your own sake taste profile then why not take the quiz right now?
our second goal
Showcase small, authentic breweries from around Japan
Of course, the big brands of sake are good. And Dassai has shown the world that it’s possible to be immensely successful in a shrinking industry. But just as most people would shudder at drinking the same wine for the rest of their lives, so should they shudder at the thought of drinking the same sake forever on.
So we decided that with Kurashu we will only work with small, authentic, and unique breweries from around Japan. Not only are these breweries often difficult to find outside of their hometown, but they also usually make the most interesting sake, and have the most interesting stories.
From the brewery in Nara who focuses on an ancient way of making their fermentation starter to one in Chiba making high-acidity sakes reminiscent of wine, we feel that these breweries best showcase the current state of sake making.