Holiday Gift Guide
Sake Gumi News

Avant-Garde Acidity (Nov 2020)

Sake Gumi is our monthly sake subscription service with 200 members throughout California. Join today! We're seeing a shift these days of brewers making sakes that are higher in acidity and experimenting with using different kojis and yeasts to create more sour...

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Yamada Nishiki Kinoko Risotto

When the coronovirus hit, it was winter 2020. In the sake world, rice is already planted and harvested by the time winter rolls around. The last step is to use all of that rice for sake-making. But with the coronovirus, orders for sake...

Lazyass Cookin'

Caccio e Ramen Pepe

20 years ago, I moved to Italy for a year – living first in Siena, then Padova (here I am above at Lake Como). I had daydreamed about Italy since high school, after watching Bertolucci's Stealing Beauty (the modern day film equivalent would be Call Me By Your Name),...

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Katei Gyutan Yaki (Grilled Beef Tongue)

In preparation for the Sake Gumi Magnificent Miyagi theme, I've been sipping on dry and clean sakes from Miyagi all month. It's been a year since I visited the prefecture, and I've been reminiscing on the times I had there by looking...

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Buttered Bamboo Shoots

In preparation for the Sake Gumi Magnificent Miyagi theme, I've been sipping on dry and clean sakes from Miyagi all month. It's been a year since I visited the prefecture, and I've been reminiscing on the times I had there by looking at...

Sake Gumi News

Magnificent Miyagi (October 2020)

Miyagi cuisine (l-r): oysters, Katei Gyutan Yaki, Buttered Bamboo Shoots Sake Gumi is our monthly sake subscription service with 200 members throughout California. Join today! Miyagi Prefecture was one of the hardest hit areas during the 2011 Tohoku Disaster which included a...

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Kokuto Sundae

Ever since shelter in place came into effect, I have been diving head first into two indulgences: K-dramas and sweets, often at the same time. It took me a few tries with the K-dramas. I got about three episodes into Let's...

Being a Mentor

My mentee in "sunglasses" and me After the 2016 elections, I was in despair and generally pretty down about the future for women and girls. I wanted to do something beyond the ballot box. What could I offer? How could I reach out and...

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Gingery Nasu + Pork Stir Fry

When early fall rolls around, I'm always in the market for thin, deep purple nasu (Japanese eggplants), which are less spongy, and juicier than the large round American eggplants. The flavor of Japanese eggplants are more concentrated than their American counterparts, and don't take...

Sake Gumi News

Unique Yeasts (September 2020)

Sake Gumi is our monthly sake subscription service with 200 members throughout California. Join today! Yeast is one of the four main ingredients of sake, the others being rice, water, and koji. Yeast is very important in sake-making because as the koji is...

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Kohi Zeri (Coffee Jelly)

Kohi zeri (coffee jelly) is a common dessert in Japan. You can find it everywhere - prepackaged at the conbini, at craft coffee shops like Maldive in Shimokitazawa, heck you can even get one fresh off the plane at Royal Coffee Shop...

Sake Pairing Recipe

O.T.R. (Okinawan Taco Rice)

Had our friend Covid never happened, Yoko and I would be in Kyushu right now, lying on the beach in Okinawa, drinking awamori, enjoying the lackadaisical tropical life. No joke, we were going to spend a month there!  Instead, we're stuck in fire country, between the coldass...

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Setting the Table for Baba-Chan

Every few months or so, I get a message or comment about how all of the photos I style have the chopsticks facing the "wrong way" and that it's "not truly Japanese." I usually reply simply by saying that I am left-handed. But I think the...

Sake Gumi News

Sake + Water (August 2020)

 Chichibu River, where Katanishi Sake Brewery draws their water Sake Gumi is our monthly sake subscription service with 200 members throughout California. Join today! Sake is made of about 80% water. The other ingredients are rice, koji, and yeast. Because sake is mostly water, brewers...