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Sakes unavailable in Canada (split from Ontario board)

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mobirose May 10, 2009 10:51 PM

I'm going to be travelling to Japan and would like to buy some sake to bring back as a gift. Other than the Satano Homare, Kaiun Junmai Ginjo and Gin Ginjo, any others you'd recommend that you can't purchase easily here? And is it possible to find these at the airport/duty free store if there's no room in my luggage?

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  1. Notorious P.I.G. RE: mobirose May 10, 2009 11:13 PM

    There are a lot of possibilities for you my friend. I could recommend 100's of Sake that you can't easily purchase here. There are just so many different breweries and different Sake that they produce that it's mind boggling. To get you started:

    Some Sake Blogs to check out:

    http://shizuokasake.wordpress.com/
    http://tokyodrinkingglass.blogspot.com/
    http://www.sake-world.com/
    http://www.urbansake.com/

    (If you can read Japanese I can recommend some more blogs

    )

    I haven't seen any Sake at Narita but that said, I haven't really looked for it there. I'm usually stuffing my face with whatever I can cram down my throat before I leave Nippon.
    I can recommend some shops to you though if you're interested.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Notorious P.I.G.
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      mobirose RE: Notorious P.I.G. May 11, 2009 07:17 AM

      Thanks for the links! Unfortunately, I can't read any Japanese but these will get me started. To the moderators: sakes are pretty limited in the LCBO in Ontario so I'm looking for stuff you can't purchase in Toronto (although I understand other provinces have much more selection).

    2. Robb S RE: mobirose May 11, 2009 09:13 AM

      I would definitely try to avoid relying on the airport shops; they have a much more limited selection.

      I would recommend Hasegawa in Omotesando Hills; they have the smaller-size bottles, they've got a good selection, and they speak English.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Robb S
        Notorious P.I.G. RE: Robb S May 11, 2009 11:40 AM

        I would definitely second Hasegawa in OH. You could do a Sake tasting there to see what you like as well. I would also check out the Sake Shop in the Isetan Depachika (Isetan is a department store and a Depachika is a food shopping area in the basement) it's also very good.

        Another option for you would be cup Sake which are single portion Sake servings. You could get an assortment of these to bring back. My favorite place to go is machidaya in Nakano. They're a special shop because they carry some higher end cup sake which is a little harder to find as most cup sake is of low quality.

        My advice to you is to bring an extra suitcase for all the stuff you're going to bring back. You will regret it if you don't.

        Edit: sorry, here's a link to the whereabout of Machidaya
        http://www.bento.com/rev/2532.html

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