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"Shiro" Premium Kome Rice Shochu by Takahashi Shuzo

This is our section on "Shiro", a Kome Shochu made by Takahashi Brewery in Hitoyoshi, Kumamoto Prefecture. This company has quite a long history. Established in 1900, Takahashi Brewery still continues to thrive under the leadership of their fifth generation CEO, producing Shiro; their premium grade Kome Shochu. When we visited the plant, our group was welcomed by the current CEO himself, Mr. Mitsuhiro Takahashi, who enlightened us with his many stories on the topic of Shochu.

His plant spans approximately 900,000 square feet and consists of six large buildings. The factory is immaculately clean, with not a single piece of litter to be found anywhere inside the production facilities. Here, the art of brewing Kome Shochu has been studied and perfected over a period of a century. Producing Shiro starts with procurement of the most suitable rice for the main base ingredient, washing the raw rice ever so carefully, and then steaming it. The backbone of the process of making a good Shochu is fresh spring water, which, at Takahashi, flows naturally and abundantly in the local areas surrounding the plant. Mountain water, premium rice, other unique base ingredients, and that century-old Takahashi Brewery magic all combine in the scenic Kumamoto Prefecture of Japan to produce Shiro. All of these things have helped Shiro climb to the rank of the best selling premium rice Shochu in Japan.

As you've already heard me say many times on our site, out of all the Japanese alcoholic beverages, Shochu is my favorite. It doesnft just taste great; it's also the healthiest of them all. And now that the secret's out, since the year 2000, Shochu has been the most popular alcoholic beverage in Japan. In the southern part of Japan, where this brewery is based, if you order sake theyfll bring you Shochu; chances are - itfs Shiro Shochu. Now, let me share with you what I experienced on my visit to Takashi Brewery in the beautiful Kumamoto Prefecture.

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