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Making wine is difficult anywhere in Japan, but try doing it in a part of the country that has been rocked by an earthquake and tsunami, and spurned because of a nuclear disaster.

Akiu Winery, near Sendai, the capital of Miyagi Prefecture that’s about 300 kilometers north of Tokyo, isn’t deterred by those challenges. Opened in December with financial help from the Mitsubishi Corp. Disaster Relief Foundation, it aims to pioneer a wine tourism-led revival in Japan’s northeast, which was already one of the country’s most economically depressed regions even before catastrophe struck.

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