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Dec 11, 2009 06:17 AM

best nigori sake for purchase in NYC area

I don't drink so I can't sample but I'm planning to gift someone with some nigori sake (I used to enjoy this very much); anyone have recs for the best place to shop for this or, specific recs on brands/bottles? I'd like to give a tasting of different bottles so I don't want them crazy expensive. Astor Wine Center? Crossroads on Broadway? I read about that place Sakaya in East Village as well. Any thoughts?

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  1. The supermarket @ the japanes mall across the river in NJ, Mitsuwa marketplace , has a nice selection. They also store many of them cold, for freshness sake.

    1. bigjeff, I do nt know if you will be able to find it, but Ohyama tokubetsu junmai nigori combines the qualities of unfiltered (nigori) with a Yamagata provenance. All sake from Yamagata-ken is special, due to the very prejudicial provincialism of the kura in Yamagata-ken, who insist on using their own local rice and their own water from the springs of Sanzan (the three mountains that give Yamagata its name) and their own methods for making the sake.

      If you cannot find Ohyama, then Momokawa Nigori Genshu is always a safe harbor.

      6 Replies
      1. re: Politeness

        thank you for the specifics! is Dassai 39 any good or just good PR?

        1. re: bigjeff

          bigjeff: "is Dassai 39 any good"

          History may prove me wrong; I've never tasted it.

          Dassai 39 is one-of-a-kind. Until proven otherwise, I see it as a G-I-M-M-I-C-K.

          I could be wrong.

          1. re: Politeness

            sorry, perhaps I meant Dassai 50? looking for nigoris. Planning to go to Sakaya, I think that is the best bet; any other shops that you like?

            1. re: bigjeff

              bigjeff, "...any other shops that you like?"

              Well, yes, but we live in Portland, Oregon, and the shops are local, so I expect you would not visit just for a bottle of sake. Now, OTOH, if you are in the area for wine tourism (pinots noirs in the Dundee Hills), then a side trip for a bottle of sake might be in the cards.

          2. re: bigjeff

            SakayaNYC at 324 East 9th Street, New York, NY 10003, carries Ohyama.

            1. re: bigjeff

              Dassai 50 is excellent as a basic sake that for me, goes well with sashimi...Dassai 39 is almost too rich for my taste, and would be best tasted on its own rather than with food. I use Dassai 50 as my regular sake... Sakaya is a great place to shop but their prices are a bit higher than Astor (however, you get very good advice at Sakaya.)