October 12, 2019 saw the third annual Jizake Yokocho, when Shunan City hosts sake brewers from all over Japan in the area near Tokuyama station in an open-air event. This year saw sakes from 50+ breweries lining the covered arcade street of Minami-ginza.
The system is interesting. For 3,000 yen (about $28) you get a stamp card with 15 spots: 5 for Yamaguchi kura, 5 for outside kura, and 5 “free” spots. You can by overflow cards with 6 stamps for 500 yen (just under $5). When I bought the ticket, I was told premium sakes might take 2-3 stamps, but this was not true, so that means 15 full choko cups of premium sake for 3,000. That is a DEAL.
This event was a blast. I gathered a group of friends from all over the area, and we drank sake, met people, ate snacks and had a good old time in general. Most of the stalls were manned by volunteers, but a few kura workers were on hand and I could greet some friends.
This event is such a great idea. The cool autumn weather is the perfect place to enjoy great sake, and local businesses sold the CRAP out of food and drink, too.
I will definitely be going again next year!