Niigata Prefecture, famed for its rice, is also known by all as one of Japan's largest sake-brewing areas, and has more sake breweries than any other prefecture.
Niigata Prefecture is blessed with topography perfect for sake-brewing and the NIIGATA SHUPOPPO project has Japanese sake from Niigata at its core. The project’s aim is to increase the brand profile of the Niigata area by getting the message out about the attractions of various areas within the prefecture, and to encourage a greater two-way flow of people between the greater Tokyo area and Niigata, leading to regional revitalization.
The word “shupoppo” is a portmanteau of the Japanese words “shu” and “poppo”. “Shu” means sake or alcohol, for which Niigata is known, and the onomatopoeic word “poppo” symbolizes the sound of walking feet as they stroll Niigata’s streets.
"Poppo” also means "steam” as in steam train, and the steam rising from sake breweries and also represents the passion that makers pour into their creations.
Equally, with the first sip of sake, then the second, you’ll feel the steam-like warmth spread through body and soul.
NIIGATA SHUPOPPO is a uniquely Niigata Prefecture style of light, dry, crisp sake. NIIGATA SHUPOPPO is designed to be enjoyed with a meal, thereby enhancing both the flavor of the food and the sake.
Please try it for yourself together with the abundant and varied food culture of Niigata.
NIIGATA SHUPOPPO is brewed from gohyakumangoku variety of rice grown on the JR Niigata Farm, established by the Niigata Branch of the East Japan Railway Company, in 2016. The rice is polished until only 58 percent of the grain remains, which is the average rice-polishing ratio for Niigata seishu (refined sake category). NIIGATA SHUPOPPO is a junmai ginjo sake made to the same exacting standards.
What is amazing about NIIGATA SHUPOPPO is that even though the same rice, polished to the same ratio, is the key ingredient, the four breweries have produced four sakes with totally different aroma and flavor profiles. That means you get to enjoy drinking and comparing them.
The same gohyakumangoku variety of rice grown on the JR Niigata Farm that goes into NIIGATA SHUPOPPO is used by the IMAYO TSUKASA brewery in Niigata City to make a drink called amazake from fermented rice malt. No sugar is used in the making of this clear-tasting, delicately sweet drink.
It is non-alcoholic and so can be enjoyed even by people who don't like sake or by children.