Saga Brewery Releases Sake Made Using Yeast Derived from Strawberries

The Yomiuri Shimbun
Ento, a special junmai sake produced with a new type of yeast, is seen on the right.

SAGA — A sake brewery in Arita, Saga Prefecture, has produced a special junmai sake, “Ento,” that uses a new type of yeast that the Industrial Technology Center of Saga developed with local strawberries.

Ento has a fruity flavor and a pineapple aroma. The brewery, Munemasa Syuzo Co., started selling the product on its website and at other outlets from July 3.

According to the company and the center, the yeast was selected from about 6,000 strains created by crossing yeast derived from Sagahonoka, a strawberry variety produced in the prefecture, with another type of yeast. The center approached sake breweries in the prefecture last August, and Munemasa decided to make sake with the yeast on a trial basis.

Locally produced sake rice is also used as a raw ingredient for the sake. The company said it devised a way to give the sake sharpness from the yeast-derived acidity, as well as the sweetness of the rice, while bottling the sake fresh to bring out its juiciness.

“[The sake] tastes like squeezed pineapple juice. We hope those who have never had sake and younger people will enjoy it,” said Kozo Yamasaki, the president of the company.