JAPAN TRAVEL: Amakusa Shuzo in Kumamoto Prefecture, Japan
Apart from its regional gourmet, Amakusa is known for its local beverage called shochu. This Japanese distilled beverage is not to be confused with sake. Shochu is distilled liquor made with rice, sweet potato, and barley, while sake is only made using fermented rice.
Amakusa Shuzo in Kumamoto, Japan
Hiraki Arito of Amakusa Shuzo
In Kyushu, shochu is the quintessential drink. It is also in Kyushu, particularly in Amakusa, where Amakusa Shuzo is located; one of the companies in Kumamoto known for shochu production.
The production house, where the shochu is being made
This brewery started out in 1898 when Eizo Hirushita established a brewery for sweet potato shochu making. As time passed by, the clamor for sweet potato decreased, which is why they developed a rice shochu variety, which became popular in Amakusa. Gradually, they began to revive sweet potato shochu which is now getting more popular across Japan.
Inside the storage room
Amakusa Shuzo has a small-scale production although they ensure that their products are of superior quality through their traditional skills.
Marie Lozano tries the Amakusa shochu
Sweet potato fries, a delicacy in Kumamoto
One of their bestselling products is the Ikenotsuyu, a distilled drink made with potato and malted rice. Although it is produced in small quantities, they make sure it still retains its quality through their meticulous methods.
Ikenotsuyu 720 ml (¥1,358) and 1800 ml (¥2,726)
To know more about their products and where to buy them, please contact them through the details provided below.
Address: 11808 Komineichi, Shinwa Town, Amakusa, Kumamoto Prefecture, Japan
Operating Hours: 8 am to 5 pm (Closed on Sunday, Public Holidays, and New Year)
Contact form: https://ikenotsuyu.com/staticpages/index.php/contactform
Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/ikenotsuyu
This first appeared on Philippine Primer magazine’s February 2019 issue.