Episode 127 Show Notes

Episode 127. Dreams do come true! Since its inception, the guys at Sake Revolution has been hoping to do an episode where at least one of them is reporting in “live from Japan”. With the covid restrictions finally easing, travel to Japan is allowed again and John jumped at the chance to visit our favorite destination! This week is a casual check in on the progression of his trip to the best sake bars and shops in Hiroshima and Tokyo. They guys also reminisce on their first (sideways) attempt to broadcast Sake Revolution live from Japan back in early 2020. This redemption episode finally gets us on the air as we envisioned! So let’s take a sneak peek at some sake hijinks Live from Japan! #SakeRevolution

Skip to: 00:19 Hosts Welcome and Introduction
Welcome to the show from John and Timothy

Skip to: 01:02 John in Japan

Skip to: 14:57 Sake Introduction and Tasting: Kikusui Funaguchi Nama Genshu Honjozo Sparkling

Kikusui Funaguchi Nama Genshu Honjozo Sparkling

Alcohol: 19.0%
Brewery: Kikusui Shuzo – Niigata
Classification: Genshu, Honjozo, Nama, Sparkling
Prefecture: Niigata
Seimaibuai: 70%
SMV: -3.0
Brand: Kikusui (菊水)
Importer/Distributor: Mutual Trading (USA)
Rice Type: Gohyakumangoku
Yeast: Kyokai 701
Acidity: 1.8
View on UrbanSake.com: https://www.urbansake.com/product/kikusui-funaguchi-nama-genshu-honjozo-sparkling/

Skip to: 32:56 Show Closing

This is it! Join us next time for another episode of Sake Revolution!

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Episode 127 Transcript

John Puma: 0:22
Hello everybody and welcome to Sake Revolution. This is America’s First Sake podcast and I am your host, one of two, uh, John Puma, and uh, I am on location in Japan right now.

Timothy Sullivan: 0:37
Bury, the Lede

John Puma: 0:38
Bury. Yes.

Timothy Sullivan: 0:40
and I’m your host, Timothy Sullivan. I am a Sake Samurai. I’m a sake educator, as well as the founder of the Urban Sake website. And every week John and I will be here tasting and chatting about all things sake and doing our best to make it fun and easy to understand. Hello, Puma? Can you hear me?

John Puma: 0:58
Tim. It’s happening. It’s happening.

Timothy Sullivan: 1:00
Where are you?

John Puma: 1:02
I am, I am actually in Tokyo now. Um, Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. I’ve just spent, um, six nights in, in Hiroshima, which is, uh, one of my favorite places to visit for, uh, for sake activities. The, the bar scene there is awesome. I’m pretty sure I’ve gone into at least some detail about that in the past. And, uh, I’ll have, I think I’ll have more of an update. On that in the future, I think I gotta digest a little bit and we’ll do a proper, a proper roundup of, of things that went on during the trip. But, uh, but when, when I first said that I was gonna be going to Japan this year, it was very quick that we decided we needed to do this. We needed to have a little bit of a quick and dirty, quick and dirty episode. A little bit, a little bit less of the editing, a little bit more of the, uh, a little bit more of the real john. And Tim, uh, having a conversation while one of us is, is over, uh, remote over in Japan. Um, and that’s because, why is it, Tim, that we wanted to do this so badly?

Timothy Sullivan: 2:19
Well, it sounds like I drew the short straw and you got to go on the trip and I’m stuck here in New York. I don’t know how that happened, No, but this, this is your, this is your dream for a long time. You’ve talked about it on our podcast for literally years that you’ve wanted to get back to Japan, and you’re back there. So before we go any further, I have to ask you, how does it feel? Are you excited? Happy. Tired. What? It’s great.

John Puma: 2:45
of these things I am, it’s, it’s exciting. I am also tired and in my, my voice is a little hoarse and, um, the one thing that that struck me the most about being over here is the, the coronavirus, um, measures are a lot more intense here than they are in New York. In New York, it’s kind of, everything’s kind of gotten a lot, a lot more laid back. Whereas here you go into a lot of places and there are temperature checks right away. Like at the door, uh, you, you’re my hands are. Our, our, the skin of my hands is like drying from constantly being sprayed with, uh, with hand sanitizer at every place I go into. Um, you know, it’s keeping people safe, It’s doing the job. Their numbers are, the numbers tell the tale, but it is a little, uh, it is a little bit, um, a little bit of getting, It takes a little bit of getting used to. Also masks on all the time, indoors, outdoors, everywhere.

Timothy Sullivan: 3:48
Wow. Well, let, let’s orient ourselves a little bit. So how long have you been in Japan so far?

John Puma: 3:55
Um, about a week.

Timothy Sullivan: 3:57
Oh my

John Puma: 3:57
I, I’d say about a week because like you got that time where, you know, the flight takes a long time. You lose a day and then you land late and it takes you forever to get to the airport, but you get outta the airport rather and get to your hotel. And So about a week?

Timothy Sullivan: 4:09
Okay. Give or take an international dateline. You’re, you’re, uh, there for about a week so far. And how much longer do you have to go?

John Puma: 4:16
about a week.

Timothy Sullivan: 4:17
Oh my God. So we got you right in the middle

John Puma: 4:19
Right in the middle. Right in the middle. Yeah. Yeah,

Timothy Sullivan: 4:22
Awesome. So I know we’re not gonna dive too much into all your adventures on this episode, but have you been having fun?

John Puma: 4:31
I have been having a great time, been tasting a whole lot of sake, been, you know, discovering some new places, revisiting old places, Yeah, it’s just been a lot of fun. It’s, uh, I think that we, we worry a lot about, uh, what the coronavirus situation might have done to places that were some of our favorites to visit. And, um, so far, so far I’ve been pretty lucky and most places are still here, and so I’ve been able to, you know, kind of revisit places that we’ve been to before, uh, and. Re reintroduce ourselves. Usually they’re remember us. It’s nice. And, uh, just have a, have a good night of, uh, sipping and talking about sake with people.

Timothy Sullivan: 5:15
Well, the American Crazy style couple from New York is pretty memorable. I think

John Puma: 5:20
I think so and, and now, and now the American crazy style couple, uh, 50% of them can speak some rudimentary Japanese now. So, um, and that’s been really exciting. Walking into places and seeing Myshell just kind of have a conversation with somebody in another language. I’m like, Okay, I can pick up on the gist of what they’re. But I couldn’t have the conversation. I couldn’t participate, but I could understand what, what’s going on, which also feels really good, to be honest. I’m like, Oh, wait a minute. I understood all that. Hey, you know, that kind of thing. I think, um, specifically we were at a, we were at a place a couple of nights ago in Hiroshima called Kappo-ya, and um, it’s a bar that we’ll talk about length in another time, but he would. Take out the bottles and, and then begin to describe the, the flavor of, of each sake. And my rudimentary sake, Japanese was good enough that I’m like able to follow along with all that and kind of make an informed decision about what I wanted to try because I could understand like the flavor notes and everything like that that he was saying. I was like, I was like, Oh, wow, actually understanding this is just so cool. Uh, it was a lot.

Timothy Sullivan: 6:38
That’s great, and I’m sure you and Myshell both had your copy of the Sake Revolution Survival Japanese for Sake Bars PDF printout, yes. So we did, we did have our episode on survival Japanese for Sake bars in Japan. And if anyone wants to go back and listen to that, you can really enjoy that. And we have a PDF for the vocabulary, which, uh, I’m sure you, you used a lot.

John Puma: 7:04
Put, I put to memory at this point, But yeah, it was, it was a ton of fun. It was a, a great time. Um, uh, in addition in this, in this episode, Tim, we’re gonna be, We’re gonna be sipping a sake that we both have in our possession.

Timothy Sullivan: 7:20
Yes, we did prepare

John Puma: 7:22
this, the story behind this sake has, has roots that predate the publication of this show. But do not predate the development of this show. Um, you wanna let our fans at home know what I mean by that.

Timothy Sullivan: 7:41
when we were conceiving this show and we started messing around and experimenting with recording, this was in February, January, February, 2020, and you and Myshell had a trip planned to Japan, and I believe you were going to Sapporo up north in Hokkaido. Is that right?

John Puma: 8:05
Yes. That.

Timothy Sullivan: 8:06
Yeah. So. We were being very optimistic thinking that we could try to do a cross time zone international recording when we did not know what we doing, but we somehow managed to get it set up. I think you brought your microphone to your hotel room

John Puma: 8:25
Yeah. So yeah, not too far off of what we’re doing right now, except we actually do know what we’re doing now.

Timothy Sullivan: 8:30
Right now we do know what we’re doing, so we picked a sake. And I remember discussing with you what sake we should pick for this. Our first international broadcast, and we wanted to pick something that was easily accessible, approachable. You could pretty much pick up anywhere in Japan cuz we wouldn’t know what you would have access to. So what John, what sake did we pick?

John Puma: 8:55
Uh, we chose the tried and true Kikusui Funaguchi, yellow can, which to a lot of sake, lovers probably very familiar sake. And, um, for those who who are familiar with it in the States and don’t know, this is a sake that you can kind of walk into a convenience store in Japan and buy anywhere, anywhere in the country, probably.

Timothy Sullivan: 9:20
Yeah, so for those not in the know kikusui Funaguchi Nama Genshu is really affordable. It’s in a can with a peel off lid. And it is high octane and, just costs a few bucks for a can and it is available in almost any convenience store in Japan across the whole country. So like, if there’s one sake, John can just walk in any place and get, We know it’s this one and it’s something that we had both had a lot in New York, so like, oh, this’ll be a good talking point.

John Puma: 9:55
Totally. And, uh, you know, and I and I, that very simple instruction, I totally managed to screw up and

Timothy Sullivan: 10:04

John Puma: 10:06
And, uh, yeah.

Timothy Sullivan: 10:09
so we, we both pick up, you get the, you get the can in Sapporo, I get the can in New York, we get on Zoom, we start recording,

John Puma: 10:19

Timothy Sullivan: 10:20
I open the can and you pick up your can and what happens.

John Puma: 10:24
So, so I grabbed it, went to a room, and yeah, we get to that part of the show. and I opened it up and, and it fizzed Tim. It fizzed

Timothy Sullivan: 10:35
Something was not right.

John Puma: 10:37

Timothy Sullivan: 10:38
was off with your can, so you poured it.

John Puma: 10:42
I poured it. And it was fizzy. It was sparkling. Uh, and I was like, Why is this happening? Um, and I looked at the can and I realized that there is like a blue sash, uh, across the front of the can that just says in in Katakana “Supakuringu”,

Timothy Sullivan: 11:00
Sparkling good

John Puma: 11:02
and I did not notice that in the 7-Eleven when I purchased the can.

Timothy Sullivan: 11:07
So you purchased the sparkling version of Kikusui, and in your defense, in your defense, John, the label, the Can has the same yellow design and the same logo,

John Puma: 11:21
it’s the same can Tim. It just has a s I’m going, That’s the hill. I’m gonna die.

Timothy Sullivan: 11:32
So, yes, in your defense it does have the same label and it, uh, it could have happened to anybody.

John Puma: 11:42
True. Absolutely.

Timothy Sullivan: 11:44

John Puma: 11:45
yes, definitely could have happened to anybody. Happened to me, but it could have happened to anybody.

Timothy Sullivan: 11:49
So we were, I remember being pretty flustered because we had set this time aside to record our first international episode with you in Japan and we, we bumbled that. So I think we like pulled the rip cord and just canceled the episode.

John Puma: 12:07
We did. We did. And I there that there’s gotta be audio footage of this attempt somewhere, but we have not been able to find it. We thought it would be fun to like publish that with this. Or like make it like a, like a Patreon exclusive kind of thing. But, uh, unfortunately we, we literally cannot find the damn thing.

Timothy Sullivan: 12:27
We’ll, we’ll take a look. Maybe we can dig it up.

John Puma: 12:29
But, uh, but yeah, this is, um, so, so now we have the Kikusui Sparkling on purpose.

Timothy Sullivan: 12:37

John Puma: 12:38
and let me tell you something, Tim, not as easy to find this time around. It turns out I went

Timothy Sullivan: 12:46
So what happened?

John Puma: 12:48
I went to, I was like, I popped into like the first convenience store I saw, and they did not have it. They had the standard can. In fact, they had the standard can now in a retro 50 year anniversary edition,

Timothy Sullivan: 13:02

John Puma: 13:03
nobody had the sparkling.

Timothy Sullivan: 13:04
Oh God.

John Puma: 13:05
And I went to, when I tell you I check every convini, every single one that I. In great. And I was unable to find one. And I remember you telling me I this conversation, I had a conversation with you. I was like, Tim, it’s bad news. I am not even full fun. And you’re like, Well, when you get to Tokyo, it’ll be everywhere. Get to Tokyo. No one’s got

Timothy Sullivan: 13:31
Oh no.

John Puma: 13:34
same thing. I’m going to all the convenience stores, they’ve got the standard kikusui, no one’s got the sparkling. Uh, and it. It took going to, um, Bic camera. They saved the day. Bic Camera

Timothy Sullivan: 13:47

John Puma: 13:49
Yeah. And, and again, for those at home, Bic Camera is, Imagine if Best Buy was like seven floors and also sold among other things. Uh, alcohol and, uh, like luggage and fragrance, you know, and everything. Imagine Best Buy was a very big department store, uh, in addition to being at Best Buy. Um, fortunately they do have the Kikusui Sparkling. So I have in my hand finally a again,

Timothy Sullivan: 14:23
Two years later,

John Puma: 14:24
years later.

Timothy Sullivan: 14:25
mission accomplished. All right. That’s so cool. Well, we are going to taste this sake together. How about we. We do our tasting and then while we’re, while we’re sipping, maybe you can give us one story, one adventure of a night out, and then We’ll,

John Puma: 14:46
That, that sounds great.

Timothy Sullivan: 14:48
yeah. We won’t divulge every izakaya you’ve discovered on this trip

John Puma: 14:53
no, we’ve definitely gotta save some for next, uh, for next episode.

Timothy Sullivan: 14:57
Okay. Well, I looked up the stats for the Kikusui funaguchi.

John Puma: 15:03

Timothy Sullivan: 15:04
Sparkling this sake is a NAMA Genshu. So Genshu again is no water added full strength alcohol. We are at a whopping 19% alcohol.

John Puma: 15:16

Timothy Sullivan: 15:17
Yeah, the classification for this is actually a Honjozo, so that’s our alcohol added style of sake. The rice is Gohyakumangoku And Gohyakumangoku is the rice that’s really well known from Niigata and this brewery, Kikusui Brewery is located in Niigata. So that all checks out. We have a rice polishing ratio of 70% remaining.

John Puma: 15:44

Timothy Sullivan: 15:44
The yeast is 7 0 1. Our sake meter value is minus three and the acidity is 1.8.

John Puma: 15:56
Mm-hmm Hmm. Very nice. Very nice.

Timothy Sullivan: 15:59
Yeah, so anyone who’s familiar with the can, the yellow can, the famous. Funaguchi namagenshu. I think this is going to be a carbonated version of that

John Puma: 16:09
Right. And, and my understanding is that it is not a, uh, secondary, this is not a champagne method fermentation. This is a carbon injection fermentation, uh, carbon injection, carbonation, uh, you know what I mean?

Timothy Sullivan: 16:25
Yes. So for the cost of the can, this is not a champagne method. Sparkling sake,

John Puma: 16:29
No. No. Somehow, uh,

Timothy Sullivan: 16:31
yeah, All right, let’s open it

John Puma: 16:34
let’s do it. Ooh, you hear that bringing back memory.

Timothy Sullivan: 16:42
Pour into the cup. Okay. I heard some aggressive bubbling

John Puma: 16:55
Yes. Yes.

Timothy Sullivan: 16:57
I do see bubbles in the glass, but maybe a little bit less than if this was a champagne method, but, um, it’s definitely, I see the bubbles rising up in

John Puma: 17:06
Yeah, they’re, they’re present.

Timothy Sullivan: 17:09
Hmm. So for me, the aroma here is very much like a candied banana. It, it’s an over ripe banana aroma. Fruity, but there’s a, there’s a richness to it.

John Puma: 17:22
I’m also getting a lot of your, your, a lot of your, your ethanol on those here. I mean, this is, this is, as you mentioned, high octane sake, and I think I’m getting a lot of that on the nose. Um, the, the, the glass here, the glassware here, this hotel room, Tim, uh, not doing it any favors. I don’t have a, I don’t have a, a a. Wine glass to use today. So it’s more of a cylindrical glass. I’m using more like a, This was designed for a highball, I think.

Timothy Sullivan: 17:52
Well, any port in a storm, so, All right. Yeah, so it’s very, very fruity. Baked fruits a little bit over ripe banana. Now let’s give it a taste.

John Puma: 18:06

Timothy Sullivan: 18:09
Oh wow.

John Puma: 18:10
Well, that’s interesting

Timothy Sullivan: 18:12
It’s sweet. It’s sweet.

John Puma: 18:16
It’s definitely sweeter than I remember. Kikusui, you know, typically being,

Timothy Sullivan: 18:22
Hmm. Yeah. And we should, we should also mention for our listeners that this is clear. Like I thought it might be like a cloudy style, but it’s like they took the Funaguchi and carbonated it.

John Puma: 18:34
That’s, I think that’s like literally what they did,

Timothy Sullivan: 18:36

John Puma: 18:37
but it does taste different. You know, It’s not like, um, it, it, I realize it is you take that and you carbonate it, but it tastes like there’s more going. I think that carbon, the carbonation is definitely playing with the flavor a bit. or it’s the power of suggestion

Timothy Sullivan: 18:57
Yeah. I find the impression of the carbonation to be really restrained. Like you do feel a little prickling on your tongue, on your palate, but it’s

John Puma: 19:06
not, it’s not overwhelming.

Timothy Sullivan: 19:07
it’s not overwhelming. It, it fizzed up a lot when I poured it, but the impression of it is a little bit more restrained. And this sake is, you know, heavy, weighty, and I feel the. When as sake has a higher alcoholic, a lot of gang shoes, sometimes you can feel the heat. So, and the, the finish, there’s, there’s the, the warmth of the alcohol really comes through on the finish. Do you feel that as well? Like the aftertaste kind of as a warming?

John Puma: 19:37

Timothy Sullivan: 19:38

John Puma: 19:39
I, I agree a hundred percent.

Timothy Sullivan: 19:40
All right.

John Puma: 19:42
Yeah. So, um, while we sip here, tell a little bit of a tale. Um, so there are, um, one of the, one of my favorite things about Hiroshima is that’s a very walkable city that has a lot of. A lot of sake centric establishments, and they tend to really know their stuff because there’s a high, I think there’s a high degree of competition in that space, so they gotta know what they’re doing. And there’s a Yakitori place that we have been to before, but we really, we didn’t, we didn’t, maybe didn’t give it our best last time we were there. Um, there was a lot of language barrier. There was a lot of, uh, not really. Ordering a lot of stuff, a lot of pointing, a lot of gesturing, and not a lot of getting, not a lot of getting good sake and not a lot of getting good food. And I felt like we’ve learned a lot and it was time for us to make a return, a triumphant return to this place. And so we, we went back new with our newly minted rudimentary understanding of Japanese, um, and. We were able to order some delicious Yakitori, which made us very happy. Uh, and we were able to have conversations about the various sakes they had cuz they have a bit of a selection. But it’s mostly like, kind of ask us ideas and we’ll get you

Timothy Sullivan: 21:10

John Puma: 21:10
Kind of that kind of feel. And, uh, Myshell does her, does her her crazy style thing. Um, I think she, they, they give her something a little bit aged, right? And she’s like, Oh yeah, this is kind of where we’re at. And she’s also mentions that she likes, uh, Nigoris like later on, she mentions that she likes things that are a little bit cloudy. And so the thing that I really like here is that the, um, the, the gentleman who’s working with us puts two and two together and comes. With a bottle of Doburoku,

Timothy Sullivan: 21:49

John Puma: 21:50
a 20% a bv doburoku, which he then tries to open and has to stop because it’s like going to explode.

Timothy Sullivan: 22:04
Oh my

John Puma: 22:04
So he like runs over to the, to the, to the side and puts it on ice. And he’s like rotating it slowly and slowly trying to get the cap off by, you know, by the, by the time this is quite a performance. And by the time he finally gets the cap off, like most of the other customers in the place have realized like, what’s going on? He got a round of applause. Uh, And, uh, and poured some, uh, for Myshell. And she was, uh, very excited about it. And, uh, and it was one, it’s, it ends up so far, it’s one of her favorite, uh, sakes of the trip. And as a bit of a bonus, we were able to find it in a liquor store. So we have a bottle. I have a bottle a few feet for me right now in a fridge.

Timothy Sullivan: 22:47
I would be scared to carry around. Explosive, Doburoku all across Japan.

John Puma: 22:52
Tim, this wouldn’t be the first time we’ve done it. And uh, and it scares me too, uh, to be honest. But, you know, you know, gotta She likes what she likes and I, I’m not gonna be the one to break her heart by telling her she can’t bring home Doburoku home.

Timothy Sullivan: 23:07
Oh God, no. So for our listeners who may not be familiar, Doburoku again is that completely unfiltered. Literally unfiltered sake that comes straight from the mash tank and gets bottled up with all the chunks of rice and all the live yeast and it. Active and bubbly and, uh, it is a wild thing to drink. It’s not widely available in Japan.

John Puma: 23:32
It’s becoming more popular I think. I think it’s a bit of a, it might be a little bit of a fad, but I think it’s definitely something I’m seeing more of so far. And um, I think that, you know, when I think of like what, you know, Myshell’s thing with crazy style, when I think of what Doburoku is

Timothy Sullivan: 23:52

John Puma: 23:52
know, it’s this, like, it’s high alcohol as you mentioned. It’s, it’s active yeast. It’s in there, so it’s a little sparkling sometimes chunks of rice in there and just all of this going on. It is literally crazy in every category.

Timothy Sullivan: 24:07

John Puma: 24:09
It is the crazy style

Timothy Sullivan: 24:11
yes. Across the board.

John Puma: 24:13
yeah, can’t speak for her, but I think, I think that, uh, my opinion is that that’s probably pretty crazy style.

Timothy Sullivan: 24:21
Well, maybe you could share with us, maybe you could share with us like one more adventure you had. So what did you, for example, what did you do last night? Anything exciting or fun or any, Any place. Cool.

John Puma: 24:34
I was, I was gonna save this Tim for the, uh, for the real episode, but I’ll give you a preview. Give you a preview. Um, there is a, a bit of a Sake celebrity that, uh, yes, that opened up a brand new bar. So, um, you may remember, uh, Marie Chiba from Gem by Moto. And, and prior to that, uh, Shinjuku standing bar Moto, uh, or she, she, you know, has now become a bit of a celebrity. She, like, she’s written tasting, uh, rather she’s written pairing books. Uh, she has a lot of custom labels. She has a custom line of sake that she sells. Um, and now she has opened up a new establishment. Called Eureka! And you have to say it that way cause it has an exclamation point in the title. So it’s Eureka! Eureka! And it is in Azabu-Juban. And we went there last night and uh yes, yes. It was a lot of fun. We, we had a little bit of a preview. We also, um, met up with the ladies from Sake Unplugged.

Timothy Sullivan: 25:44
Oh geez. I miss out on all the fun.

John Puma: 25:47
yeah, it was a lot of fun. Uh, we got to, uh, we got to sit with them and chit chat a little bit, meet in person for the first time. Um, and, and one little, one small little bit of a surprise for well, that will spoil for later. Uh, later that same night friend of the show, Chizuko, Chizuko Helton pops in there as well.

Timothy Sullivan: 26:14
Chizuko Niikawa-Helton of sake. Caliente fame, she showed up as well.

John Puma: 26:21
showed up as well.

Timothy Sullivan: 26:22
Of course,

John Puma: 26:24
So yeah, it was a, a little

Timothy Sullivan: 26:26
a power spot for sake

John Puma: 26:28
Yeah, it was, it was a little reunion. It was a little fun, uh, to, uh, to chit chat with everybody and, and to be in this, I don’t think, I’ve never been in, I’ve never been in Japan at the same time as Chizuko before.

Timothy Sullivan: 26:42

John Puma: 26:43
It just never happened. So this was, um, it was nice to, um, to run to her and to, uh, talk sake a little bit. it

Timothy Sullivan: 26:52
that’s so cool.

John Puma: 26:54
Yeah. Well, again, we’ll talk more about, uh, about the goings on, at, uh, at Eureka and other, uh, other fun things we did in the near future.

Timothy Sullivan: 27:06
Now Marie Chiba, as you mentioned, is well known for pairing sake and food. That’s kind of her jam. And I remember I was on a Zoom with her, or I went, went to one of her seminars online and she was pairing sake with olive oil and things like that. Like it was really, really, Outta left field kind of pairings. But I think that’s the kind of thing that is really fun and interesting. You may not have sake that way every night of the week, but it really pushes the conversation forward and gets you thinking about things outside of the box. For sure. So she’s an outside of the box sake pairing persona in Japan.

John Puma: 27:46
Yes, definitely.

Timothy Sullivan: 27:47
that is awesome. This place like just opened, right? Eureka. I saw

John Puma: 27:50
Yeah, they, they opened on the first.

Timothy Sullivan: 27:52
1st of

John Puma: 27:53
Yeah, the 1st of November. So, um, um, so for the record, that’s, uh, like today’s the fourth, so it was just a few days ago. Three days ago.

Timothy Sullivan: 28:02
Oh, that’s awesome.

John Puma: 28:04
Yeah. And it was, um, yeah, it was really great to be over there. It was packed, uh, packed with, and I, and I don’t, you know, I don’t know most of the individuals who were there, but I imagine they were probably like industry.

Timothy Sullivan: 28:19

John Puma: 28:19
When we walked in, uh, Marie came over and warmly greeted Michelle and I, and gave us both reach out and gave us both high fives and yes. And the, uh, the rest of the rest of the people in the bar were looking at us like, who are these people? that she’s, that she’s coming over and greeting personally. um,

Timothy Sullivan: 28:43
did. Did you bring any Omiyage or little gifts?

John Puma: 28:47
We did, we did, uh, we, we brought with us an assortment of, uh, of sake from New York. Uh, we wanted to represent New York to sake and, uh, distribute them to the wonderful people, uh, at our favorite places in Japan. And so, uh, we did bring some Brooklyn Kura selections over to Marie, and she seemed very excited about them, so we’ll. That goes down

Timothy Sullivan: 29:11
That’s great. Well, I think, you know, when people visit us from Japan and come to New York, I love to receive hard to get sake. So the reverse must be true as well, that if you go to Japan from New York and you bring local delicious sake from here, it’s something they can’t get regularly. So that’s an awesome little gift to bring them. That’s very thoughtful of you.

John Puma: 29:35
Yeah. And, and let me tell you, when you, when. Come up with a short list of a lot of people you want to give sake to, and then you’re trying to figure out, wait a minute, can I possibly fit 14 bottles into my outbound luggage?

Timothy Sullivan: 29:49

John Puma: 29:49
I’ve never had to think that way before. And it was a bit of a challenge, but we succeeded. We, we are, you know, the sake made it to Hiroshima and then some of it made it back to Tokyo, you know, cuz we get, we did give out some bottles in, in Hiroshima as well to some of our favorites there.

Timothy Sullivan: 30:05
great. Well, you’ve got a week left, so any remaining New York sake you can still give away. And having room for 14 bottles on the outbound leg, I’m doing some quick math here. That means you may have room for 14 bottles on the return leg next week.

John Puma: 30:21
14. Oh, ye of little faith.

Timothy Sullivan: 30:24
Oh, even

John Puma: 30:25
No, we’re aiming higher than 14

Timothy Sullivan: 30:27
You’re gonna be throwing away clothes and underwear to make more room for sake in your luggage.

John Puma: 30:32
We may just buy another bag to see. This might be. Right. So I wanna say our record for bringing back bottles of sake, I think is something like 18.

Timothy Sullivan: 30:42

John Puma: 30:43
So the goal is can we beat the record or can we at least match the record, You know? And so we’re gonna, we’re gonna see what we can do. We’ve got some ideas. We, we think we can pull it off, but we have to, we have to see weight is your enemy. Uh, when it comes to bringing sake back, it’s never the, it’s never the space. You can make the space. It’s the. Liquids, liquids in glass specifically are, are very heavy. Um,

Timothy Sullivan: 31:10
They are. But I have faith in you.

John Puma: 31:13
Oh, I thank you Tim.

Timothy Sullivan: 31:14
Wow. Well, I don’t even know what time it is there. It must be really early in the morning

John Puma: 31:20
early, Tim. I mean, not that I’m complaining about an excuse to drink sake at, uh, what is it, 10, 10, 10 in the morning. Um,

Timothy Sullivan: 31:31
Well, this is a little like mimosa esque bubbles for your, to get your br your brunch started in tokyo

John Puma: 31:37
Maybe I should put some Orange Juice in this.

Timothy Sullivan: 31:40
I won’t tell All right, well we’re gonna wrap it up and when you get back to the city, we are going to sit down and do a full post-mortem, uh, John Puma in Japan breakdown. And I cannot wait to hear all the funny, crazy style stories and I’m really looking forward to that. But for now, my advice to you is go out, have some fun. Enjoy Tokyo and uh, we’ll look forward to having you back. Safe and sound

John Puma: 32:13
All right. Thank you very much, Tim. Thanks for holding it down back in New York,

Timothy Sullivan: 32:19
I’m, I’m maning the Fort

John Puma: 32:21
maning the fort. We’re all good. I appreciate it. Uh, and uh, yeah, look, actually, uh, you. Regardless of, you know, being in Japan, I’m still looking forward to coming back and, and getting, getting back into our usual episode recording rhythm.

Timothy Sullivan: 32:35

John Puma: 32:36
Uh, but yeah, that’ll be, we doing that pretty soon. So,

Timothy Sullivan: 32:41
And uh, I am jealous. So let me just put that out there too. John got to Japan first. I’ll, I’ll get there sometime in the next few months. Mark my words.

John Puma: 32:51
In next few months. Ooh, I’m, this is a,

Timothy Sullivan: 32:54

John Puma: 32:55
I’m gonna hold you to that.

Timothy Sullivan: 32:56
Yeah, well it couldn’t happen to a nicer guy, John, so I’m glad you got back and you’re living your sake dreams right now. So I’ll put my jealousy aside and, uh, just wish you all the best. Uh, thanks for getting up early to talk to us over. Over Zoom and I want to thank all of our listeners for tuning in to this casual episode live from Japan, and I really hope that you’re enjoying our show. And I’d like to say a special thank you to all of our supporters on Patreon as well. We really do appreciate all the support you give to our show. If any other listeners would like to join us, please visit patreon.com/SakeRevolution. To learn more about supporting our podcast,

John Puma: 33:43
And for other ways to support our show, can I interest you in perhaps leaving a review at your favorite podcast platform of choice, perhaps Apple Podcast or something similar? Uh, it really does help. Get the word out about our show, and on that note, Tim, everybody at home please grab your glasses, something sparkly. Hopefully. Remember to keep drinking sake and Kanpai

Timothy Sullivan: 34:11