The government of Fussa, a city located in western Tokyo, has released an anime video to introduce two local breweries with free guided tours. In the tours, you can learn about sake, a unique type of rice wine originated in Japan with undeniable social function and status in Japan’s working environment and for leisure consumption. Ever wondered how sake is made? Check out about the sake breweries and their tours here at Japan.com!
Tamura Sake Brewery
Established in 1822, Tamura is one of the oldest breweries that are still in operation. Their brewing business started with their discovery of the perfect water for sake in their well. This is also why their signature brew is named Kasen, literally meaning “delighting well water”. However, they only take reservations for groups of 10 or more people, so if you want to enjoy a visit there, you might want to consider going with your family and friends.
Available language: Japanese
Reservation period: 1 week - 3 months in advance
Tour duration: 1 hour
Opening hours: 08:00 - 17:00 (Closes on Sun, Mon and public holidays)
Phone reservation: +81-042-551-0003 (Japanese only)
Internet reservation: http://www.seishu-kasen.com/kurakengaku (Japanese only)
Website: http://www.seishu-kasen.com/ (Japanese only)
Ishikawa Sake Brewery
Ishikawa is another brewing giant with 150 years of history since its 1863 founding. Not unlike Tamura, Ishikawa’s signature brew focuses on quality water, with theirs coming from the Tama River. The brew’s name is Tamajiman, which means “proud of Tama”. The best part of Ishikawa is that its tour is available in three languages including English! The trip may also be more versatile, also consisting of two restaurants and a brewery museum. Tourists can feel at home while making the most out of the tour!
Available languages: Japanese, English, French
Reservation period: 1 day in advance (but call earlier to ensure a place for you)
Tour duration: 1 hour
Tour hours: 10:00 - 16:00 (weekdays) (For Sat, Sun and public holidays, please discuss with the brewery through email)
Phone reservation: +81-042-553-0100 (ask for the PIC of Kura Study Tour)
Internet reservation: email to email@example.com (state that you are “applying for English Kura Study Tour” [英語見学希望])
Being only an hour away from Shinjuku by JR and with the significant American presence (English-speakers in Japan are rare after all) in the area, Fussa is perfect for visitors looking for a short day trip. So, forget wine country. Visit Fussa and their world famous sake!