Introducing kokushu museums around Japan.
Managed by Shirakane Shuzo (est. in 1869), the museum features information on the production process and history of shochu, interactive VR and distillation experiences, and an original label-making workshop. The building is registered as a Tangible Cultural Property.
Run by Denen Shuzo (est. in 1890), the museum displays aging pots that are still in use today and a visual guide to the various stages of aging shochu in casks. The building is a repurposed 240-year-old sake storehouse. A library area is also open to visitors.
Affiliated with Takahashi Shuzo (est. in 1900), the museum introduces the history and the culture of Kuma shochu. Exhibits include an outline of the production process, past TV commercials, and posters of Hakutake, their main brand.
A property of Kirishima Shuzo (est. in 1916), the museum embodies themes based on ‘viewing, learning, relaxing, and tasting’ as seen in the ‘Factory Garden.’ Both the shochu factory and the original company building are open to visitors.
Image Provided by Kirishima Shuzo Co., Ltd
Run by Genkai Shuzo, (est. in 1900), the museum has displays on the production process and 500-year history of the famous mugi (barley) shochu from Iki.
From the producer of Isanishiki, Okuchi Shuzo, the museum notably includes a replica of the wooden post featuring the oldest writing of the word “shochu” originally found in a nearby shrine. Other attractions include factory tours and video materials.
This theme park, run by a seed koji dealer, Kawauchi Genichiro Shouten (est. in 1931), provides tours of the shochu factory and offers an exhibition for visitors to learn about the history of koji.
From the producer of Satsuma Shiranami, Satsuma Shuzo (est. in 1936), this museum offers tours of the historic shochu distillery. Viewers can also enjoy a panoramic view of the city from the observation deck.
Run by the producer of Fukutsuru and Jagatara Oharu, Fukuda Shuzo (est. in 1688), this museum includes displays of historic tools used during visits from the Hirado feudal lord. Visitors can also take tours of the factory.
Owned by Hombo Shuzo (est. in 1872), visitors of this shochu storehouse can see their traditional shochu production technique using pots dating back to 1887. The surrounding area is designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
This shop and cafe was renovated from the mansion of Tsunekichi Hombo, 2nd generation owner of Honbo Shuzo. While enjoying the traditional wooden architecture and the garden, visitors can try Hombo Shuzo’s shochu and whisky.
Run by Sanwa Shurui (est. in 1958), the producer of Iichiko, the distiller offers factory and storehouse tours. The distillery is surrounded by gardens and paths that provide visitors with beautiful, seasonal views.
From Amami Oshima Kaiun Shuzo, the producer of Lento, the factory allows visitors to experience “Onkyo Jukusei”, a method of playing classical music for their shochu while it ages. They also offer seasonal activities, such as sugarcane harvesting and juice tastings.
A commercial complex run by Unkai Shuzo, makers of ‘Soba Unkai’ and ‘Kobiki BLUE’. The facility features shochu and sake storehouses and a tourist center ‘Kuramoto Aya Shusen no Mori’ with souvenir stands and restaurants.
A storehouse run by Hamada Shuzo (est. in 1868), Hamada Shuzo Denbeegura features displays of historic shochu production methods using wooden pot stills. The museum area also displays old distillery tools.
Managed by Hamada Shuzo (est. in 1868), the storehouse introduces visitors to shochu production, preservation, and aging inside the 300-year old Kushikino Kinzan mine. Historical documents related to the mine are also on display.
This tourist-friendly facility of Chuko Shuzo (est. in 1949) features an introduction to the history of awamori, an aged sake storehouse, and a look at their process for making Ryukyu Gusuku-style earthenware pots.
Run by Masahiro Shuzo (est. in 1883), this museum introduces visitors to the history, brewing process, and different types of awamori. Various collections of historic and rare awamori are also on display.
The producer of Ryukyu Ohcho, Taragawa Shuzo (est. in 1948), offers a storehouse tour with a video screening of the awamori brewing process and a tour of their cave storehouse used for long-term aging.
The online gallery is run by Shinkawa Daijingu, enshrining the guardian god of sake wholesale dealers. Exhibits include paintings and documents regarding Shinkawa, where all the sake shipped from the Kansai region arrived during the Edo period (1600~1868).
Operated by Masumoto Souhonten, a wholesale dealer of alcoholic beverages established during the Tenmei period (1781-1789), the gallery displays photographs, paintings, and historical documents related to the company.
The archive is managed by Kita Sangyo (est. in 1916), a company dealing packaging materials for alcoholic beverages, and features information and data on both domestic and overseas sake industries.
Renovated from a 200-year-old brewery, the museum operates under the producer of Takasago (est. in 1791) and displays sake brewing tools and sake vessels.
Run by the brewery that produces Kinryo (est. in 1789), the museum welcomes visitors to learn about sake brewing in the Edo period (1600~1868) and to view a great number of sake vessels.
Operated by Kawatsura Shuzo (est. 1891) the museum boasts five buildings registered as Tangible Cultural Properties. One of these buildings, a former rice storehouse, is available for a tour.
Located on the second floor of the 200-year old brewery building, the museum at Kuncho Shuzo offers visitors great views of the beams of the building along with the exhibits.
The museum is dedicated to the Kinoshita Shuzo, which operated from 1868 until 1970. The “Sake Brewing Tools of Hizen Saga” at the museum are designated as Important Tangible Folk-Cultural Properties of Japan.
Operating under the Nakano Shuzo Brewery (est. in 1844), the museum portrays the sake brewing process using Japanese washi paper dolls and offers tours of the building where they brewed sake for 200 years until 1972.
Operated by Gekkeikan (est. in 1637), the museum, built in 1909, displays tools designated as important Tangible Folk-Cultural Properties by the city of Kyoto and offers live demonstrations of komomaki (wrapping of sake casks for protection and advertisements).
Located in Matsunoo Taisha Shrine, known as the shrine for the god of sake, this museum highlights the relationship between the shrine itself and sake and how sake is consecrated to their god.
Run by Hakutsuru Shuzo (est. in 1743), the museum models the sake brewing process with life-size dolls and an accompanying video from the early Showa period. The museum was used as a brewery until 1969.
Managed by Sawanotsuru (est. in 1717), the museum exhibits include sake traditions from the Nada area. The building, originally built in the mid-1800s, was reconstructed after the 1995 earthquake and is designated as an important Tangible Folk-Cultural Property by Hyogo prefecture.
Run by Kiku-Masamune (est. in 1659), the museum was built using material from the original brewery. Most of the exhibits are designated as important Tangible Folk-Cultural Properties of Japan.
Japan’s one and only museum of sake and sakura (est. in 1982), the museum’s Brewery Hall offers videos of traditional sake brewing and sake brewing songs while the Memorial Hall hosts various sake-themed exhibitions.
Run by the producers of Shirayuki (est. in 1550), the museum includes a brewery diorama, a collection of Shirayuki brand historical products, and a photo spot where visitors can take pictures with sake brewing tools.
Honoring Tanba Toji, the group of brewmasters from the Tanba region, the museum exhibits include sake brewing materials and the 300-year history of the master brewers.
Managed by the producer of Kamitaka (est. in 1679), the museum displays rare posters, labels, and account books dating back to the 17th century. Visitors can also tour the 7 wooden brewing buildings on the property.
The museum is located in the town of Yokawa, famous for growing top-quality Yamadanishiki, a popular strain of sake rice, and exhibits sake rice-related materials. The building also contains a hot spring, restaurant, and farm stand.
Established in 1904 as a national research organization focused on alcoholic drinks in Japan, the institute conducts experiments, analysis, and research related to alcohol. The experiment building is available for a tour.
Image Provided by the National Research Institute of Brewing.
This mirin museum run by Kokonoe Mirin (est. in 1772) displays historical materials and honorable certificates, and provides tours of the storehouse. The company’s 300-year-old ‘Kokonoe Mirin Okura’ is also registered as a Tangible Cultural Property.
Run by Takashima Shurui Foods (est. in 1870), the museum features historical materials related to mirin, Narazuke pickles, and Nada-gogo, the famous sake brewing area in Hyogo Prefecture. The building is also registered as a Tangible Cultural Property.
Kankyo Shuzo (est. in 1862) offers educational materials on the mirin production process. Highlights include a tour of 4 buildings registered as Tangible Cultural Properties, such as the former head office and mirin factory.
This online gallery, run by Nikaido Shuzo (est. in 1866), features archived TV commercials for their Mugi Shochu Nikaido dating back to 1987.
Hosted by Sanwa Shurui (est. in 1958), this online gallery features archived posters and TV commercials for their mugi (barley) shochu, Iichiko.
A YouTube channel run by Satsuma Shuzo, the producer of Satsuma Shiranam shares TV commercials of their popular products, such as Kannoko and Kuro Shiranami.