Introducing kokushu museums around Japan.
Run by Meiri Shurui, the museum derives its name from the legend that a local feudal lord called the drinking parties with his vassals “Bessyun-e”. Visitors can also tour the umeshu (plum wine) factory next to the museum.
From the producer of Azumarikishi (est. in 1849), the museum allows visitors to tour the cave used as their storehouse. The 600 meter-long cave originally functioned as an underground factory during World War II.
Located in the Mitake Gorge, the garden is run by the brewery that produces Sawanoi (est. in 1702). Visitors can enjoy the clear stream of the Tama River and the beautiful trees along the popular walking trail, and a brewery tour.
Run by the Japan Sake & Shochu Makers Association (JSS), the center has numerous visual displays related to sake production. The center also provides the latest information on sake, shochu, and awamori, such as Sakagura tours and national events.
Managed by Ishikawa Shuzo (est. in 1863), the museum hosts collections of sake labels and vessels that date back to the Meiji period (1868~1912). Six buildings on the property are registered as Tangible Cultural Properties of Japan.
Established to “connect producers and consumers, the elderly and the young, and farm villages and cities through food and agriculture”, the museum hosts permanent exhibits including sake vessels and sake brands of their graduates.
Image Provided by the Food and Agriculture Museum at Tokyo University of Agriculture.
Originally a brewing research laboratory run by the Ministry of Finance, the site was established in 1904 and is now registered as an important cultural property of Japan. Visitors can tour the former boiler and koji-making rooms.
Image Provided by Brewing Society of Japan.
From the producers of Chichibu Nishiki (est. in 1749), the museum hosts an exhibit showing the sake brewing process using life-size mannequins and an archive of historical materials and sake vessels.
The museum exhibits historical materials on taxes, including a permanent exhibit with brewery charters from the Edo period (1600~1868). Materials on the alcohol tax in the Edo period are also available on the museum’s online library, Historical Material Library of Taxes.
Run by Suzuki Shuzo (est. in 1871), the museum displays 15 paintings by Toyohara Kunichika, a ukiyo-e artist portraying the sake brewing process at Suzuki Shuzo around 1880.
Run by the brewery that produces Yoshinogawa (est. in 1548), the museum incorporates technology in its exhibits, such as the “Sake Brewing Experience Game”. The 100-year-old museum building is registered as a Tangible Cultural Property of Japan.
Located in Echigo Yuzawa Station, Ponshukan offers tastings of major sake brands from Niigata Prefecture and the sake bath, “Yunosawa”. Other chain locations are in Niigata Station and Nagaoka Station.
Sakeology Center, established in 2018, researches the world’s first academic discipline, “Sakeology,” covering raw material, brewing, distribution, consumption, culture and history of sake. There is also an exhibition space in the center.
Run by Kikusui Shuzo Brewery (est. in 1881), the laboratory is dedicated to the research, development, and production of sake, as well as promoting the sake industry. The facility’s library also has a collection of specialized materials on sake.
The city of Nagareyama is considered to be the origin of white mirin. The museum’s permanent exhibition includes historical materials related to mirin production in the area from the An-ei period (1772-1781).
This outdoor museum features historical materials, posters, and labels for white mirin. The display is on the walls of the Nagareyama Kikkoman company building, which took over Nagareyama’s Manjo mirin brand.