Akashi Tai Honjozo Genshu Sake is a traditional Japanese sake, like a normal Honjozo Sake it can have some distillers alcohol added. However, the Genshu designation means that it is undiluted. Most Sake is diluted with water to bring the ABV down from 18-20% to 14-16%, Genshu is not diluted at all. I am reliably informed that Honjozo Genshu is what the sake brew masters reach for at the end of a working day and perhaps the purest expression of Akashi Tai sake. The Akashi Sake Brewery began sake production in 1886 in the town of Akashi which is one of the major fishing ports in the west of Japan. It is named Akashi after the town and Tai after the sea bream, called Tai in Japanese, that the region is famous. It is the sea bream that adorns Akashi’s labels. Akashi Tai Honjozo Genshu Sake is made using high quality Nihon Barre rice that has been only lightly milled removing only 30% of the outer (bran) layer of the rice (actually by law its 30%, Akashi go to 35%). The basics of sake production are that the rice is milled, soaked, steamed, fermented with with a mould fungus called “koji”, filtered, water added and then bottled. For a Honjozo Sake up to 10% of the weight of the sake rice in distillers alcohol may be added to the fermenting sake mash. Most quality producers only add a small amount, here it is less than 2%, but it adds vibrancy and to the aromas and flavours. However as the Akashi Tai Honjozo Genshu Sake is not dilute it has fuller and deeper flavours than a normal Honjozo sake. The higher alcohol and the depth of flavours mean than this can be served on the rocks.