This years Saijo Sake Festival is being held on Saturday 12th and Sunday 13th October. Apparently this is a huge event in Higashi-Hiroshima. Too bad I won’t be there to see it.
Saijo was a lot quieter in June when our group of 4 thirsty Australians headed out from our temporary abode at K’s House, Hiroshima.
I previously posted about adventures pinned to hostel notice boards. Unfortunately a small detail had been omitted from the glowing tribute to Saijo and its series of sake breweries. Sake is not brewed in June, and bugger all is open to look at and sample!
We got the feeling something was amiss when the punctual as usual train dropped us at JR Saijo, and we were the only folks getting off. On a Saturday? On a nice day? Around 1:00pm? We thought this was a tourist mecca?
Having got hold of a map at the local information centre, we followed the suggested route to one closed brewery after another. Stumbling across the open Saijotsuru (crane) brewery was a great find. While brewing was not going on, one of the owners spoke english, so we were given a good idea of the brewing processes and types of sake – without actually seeing it in action.
So if you are heading down to the festival, check out this place. You wont be disappointed. Saijotsuru Sake Brewery Co., Ltd.
9-17 Saijo Honmachi, Higashi Hiroshima-shi, 739-0011
Upon a recommendation of Saijotsuru we trotted around the corner for a great set menu lunch at the Kamotsuru. Very hospitable staff. Great food.
Saijo is less than an hour out of Hiroshima by train. Make a day of it by doing a loop from Hiroshima – Saijo – Mihara – Setodo – Mihara – Hiroshima.