For Goodness Sake.
As one of my roving reporters has pointed out, Toronto has opened its own 酒蔵 or Saké (pronounced Saw-kay not saw-key) Brewery! Using fresh Spring Water from Muskoka and California rice, the Ontario Spring water Sake Company has opened its doors in the Distillery District of Toronto. Reviews have been positive and since the LCBO is reluctant to sell Sake, connoisseurs have had to import it from Japan or do without.
"Through the glass window patrons are able to witness the handcrafted distilling process while the bar offers a variety of sakes to sample including some that have been freshly pressed earlier in the day. In a refrigerated display there are five different types of sakes available for purchase including two special edition blends. 300 ml bottles range between $12.95 and $14.95, while 1.8 L magnum bottles run between $64.95 and $74.95."
If you want to pretend that you know what you're talking about when discussing the finer points of a good Sake, use their Knowledge Guide as a cheat sheet.
That's all well and good, and I truly hope it is a successful venture. But until they begin to brew ゴジラ酒, they will forever be substandard. Back in my Soma days, I bought four 1.8litre bottles of Godzilla Sake with the expectation of selling them abroad to Otaku at a huge profit. Little did I know that Ebay only deals in wine and not in other liquor when I made my investment. One of the bottles was polished off during a cold winter in my apartment when Andy and I would sit around sipping carafes of the warmed elixir (熱燗 atsukan=warmed Sake) while watching TV after a hard day in the Maki Eikaiwa salt mines. We cracked another bottle and got about halfway through it when he up and departed for Ishinomaki. Since I rarely drink alone, it has sat untouched for the last 6 years and I think I'd be better off using it as a toilet cleaner now than imbibing of it.
Here are some nice blurry pictures of the bottles I have (I may have a better camera, but that doesn't mean I'm a better photographer) showing classic Godzilla and Fire-breath Godzilla.
I still have 2 bottles of unopened Sake, so if anyone wants to join me in finishing them off, please give me a call! (I have no idea if Sake remains potable after several years. Can anyone enlighten me?)