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Drinking the Japanese way

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Sake lovers will have an opportunity to sample 500 varieties of the drink from around the country at the Nihon-shu Fair 2009, to be held at Tokyo’s Ikebukuro Sunshine City on June 17.

At the annual event, hosted by the National Research Institute of Brewing and the Japan Sake Brewers Association, visitors will have a chance to taste regional varieties of ginjoshu (unadulterated sake made from rice that has been polished, taking 40 percent of its hull out, and has been fermented slowly at low temperatures). The varieties presented there have all been branded as top-quality sake by the national research institute. Breweries from 45 prefectures will also set up booths to promote their original products and answer questions from visitors.

For years, the event was held for industry professionals only, but since 2007 it has been open to the public, organizers said. Visitors can attend one of two sessions; the first session is held from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., and the second session will take place between 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Admission is ¥3,000 for tickets purchased in advance and ¥3,500 at the door. For more information, contact (03) 3519-2091 or visit www.japansake.or.jp (Japanese only)