Bun bun Junmai Ginjo – Tasting

As mentioned in my last post, Bun bun is the first sake developed by Shintani Shuzo toji Fumiko Shintani. The label features a rather cute drawing of Fumiko in a cat-motif kimono on one side, and a cartoon of her actual cat on the other side.

Wakamusume Bun bun Junmai Ginjo. Yamada Nishiki at 60% seimaibuai, nama muroka genshu.

In interviews with local news (being one of the few women working as toji in Japan, and in charge of one of the smallest kura in the country, Ms. Shintani is drawing a lot of local attention) she says that this sake was developed with her sake-fan women friends in mind. Since they are all apparently fans of complex, full bodied junmais, this is no delicate ginjo.

It starts with a very mellow aroma with a hint of melon and muscat. In the mouth, the sweetness is reserved, balanced with a healthy touch of savory umami and very low astringency. It shows off its muroka nama nature with a brightness in the mouth that doesn’t quite reach “sour” levels of acidity but is still clean. It’s a lively, fresh drink and if I were pressed I’d put this a more on the tanrei scale than the nojun.

It is, in a word, lovely. It’s one of those sakes you just want more of. It doesn’t linger, it doesn’t coat the tastebuds, it just goes down like magic. It really does speak well of Shintani Shuzo’s future under Ms. Shintani’s leadership!

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