The town of Tano in the Aki District facing the Pacific Ocean in eastern Kochi Prefecture used to flourish as a place for collecting wood transported from upstream. The beautiful forests gave birth to an abundant supply of crystal clear water. In Meiji 37 (1904), Kintaro Hamakawa, the second-generation owner of a local shipping agent, began brewing sake by making use of this soft water and branded it “Hama no Tsuru.”
Over the years, the environment surrounding sake brewing has changed drastically. In an era when “futsushu” (“ordinary” sake) became popular and price competition escalated amid mass production, it was tough times for a small brewery like Hamakawa Shoten. This was the reality faced by Naoaki Hamakawa when he took over as the fifth-generation owner.
Hamakawa Shoten was among the first in Kochi Prefecture to engage in brewing Junmai sake and has been committed all along to produce best quality Japanese rice wine. Determined “to make great tasting sake no matter what,” Hamakawa began the production for Ginjo despite opposition from his predecessor as well as the brewery’s workers. Hamakawa certainly was worried about funding and equipment at the time. This was how “Bijofu” was born -- and all this, took place some 20 years ago. This sake is the product of Hamakawa’s devotion to produce handmade, premium sake and not to succumb to the pressures of mass production.
|Brewery Name||Hamakawa Shoten Co. Ltd.|
|Address||2150 Tano, Aki District, Kochi Prefecture|
|Representative||Naoaki Hamakawa (CEO)|
|Master Brewer||Akira Ohara|
|Most famous brand||Bijofu|