40 episodes

SAKE ON AIR is an exploration into the stories, people, lifestyle, and what’s really happening in the world of SAKE and SHOCHU. The show is brought to you by a team of experts based here in the Sake Homeland of Japan, working and thriving on the front lines of the industry. Together with local and international guests from a range of fields, both sake-specific and sake-curious, each week we’ll be going beyond just, “What is sake?” and instead, exploring the excitement, challenges, depth, and possibilities in, what we think, is arguably the world’s most fascinating and enjoyable pair of beverages.

Sake On Air Sake On Air

    • Places & Travel
    • 4.8, 18 Ratings

SAKE ON AIR is an exploration into the stories, people, lifestyle, and what’s really happening in the world of SAKE and SHOCHU. The show is brought to you by a team of experts based here in the Sake Homeland of Japan, working and thriving on the front lines of the industry. Together with local and international guests from a range of fields, both sake-specific and sake-curious, each week we’ll be going beyond just, “What is sake?” and instead, exploring the excitement, challenges, depth, and possibilities in, what we think, is arguably the world’s most fascinating and enjoyable pair of beverages.

    Tahoma Fuji Sake with Andrew Neyens

    Tahoma Fuji Sake with Andrew Neyens

    Although we’re all still grounded here in Japan, this week we’re getting off the island for a visit to the great Pacific Northwest to chat with Andrew Neyens, the one-man-band behind Seattle’s Tahoma Fuji Sake.Between stints at some of Toyama’s most exciting and inspiring breweries, including Fumigiku Shuzo (makers of Haneya) and Masuda Shuzo (makers of Masuizumi), as well as attempts to scratch a similar itch at craft beer producers in the greater Seattle area, Andrew finally settled upon making sake something rooted closer to home – and he couldn’t have gotten much closer.Committed to making Tahoma Fuji not only a great sake, but also something that he could manage entirely on his own, Tahoma Fuji Sake Brewing Company was born in the small brewery built together with his father on the same property as his home in Ballard. From there, he’s passionately honed his craft, DIY’d his equipment little-by-little, and over the past few years managed to turn Tahoma Fuji into a mainstay at many of the Seattle area’s most selective beverage retailers and pioneering dining establishments.This week’s visit to Tahoma Fuji actually took place this past autumn, and begins with Justin being guided on a brief, but detailed brewery tour. The two then settle in to discuss Andrew’s progression through the world of sake and brewing in general over the years, exploring the experiences and values that have guided the development of Tahoma Fuji Sake as both a business and a more personal endeavor, and what the future sake landscape of Seattle might look like.You’ll notice right away that this recording was managed on the most minimal equipment. Frank has worked some serious magic in order to bring this episode to life. While not up to our regular audio standards, we think that the story and the messages in this week’s show carry it above any technical limitations. We appreciate you’re understanding and hope you’ll stick with us all the way through. We think you’ll be glad that you did.







    Please do take a moment to review and rate us over on Apple Podcasts. You can also get in touch with us at questions@sakeonair.com, or follow us at @sakeonair on  Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. There’s a stockpile of episodes on our YouTube channel, as well.Thanks for tuning in everyone. We'll be back in a couple of weeks.Until then, Kampai!







    Sake On Air is made possible with the generous support of the Japan Sake & Shochu Makers Association and is broadcast from the Japan Sake & Shochu Information Center in Tokyo. The show is a co-production between Export Japan and Potts.K Productions, with audio production by Frank Walter.Our theme, “Younger Today Than Tomorrow” is composed by forSomethingNew for Sake On Air.

    • 1 hr 5 min
    Sake’s Missing Link with Pernod Ricard’s Yann Soenen

    Sake’s Missing Link with Pernod Ricard’s Yann Soenen

    With LINK, Pernod Ricard made their first foray into the world of sake. Bringing together the craftmanship and nuance of Chivas Regal with the pioneering spirit of Toyama’s Masuda Shuzo – makers of Masuizumi - the company in charge of many of the world’s most iconic labels in spirits set out to bring an unprecedented proposal to the world of sake.But why sake? And why now? This week Sebastien and Justin welcome Marketing Director for Pernod Ricard Japan, Yann Soenen, to discuss this and more.While the focus of the show is, of course, primarily on sake, we can’t help but inquire about the world of Japanese spirits, as well; particularly with Pernod Ricard’s recent acquisition of The Kyoto Distillery, creators of Ki No Bi, a label that has almost overnight become synonymous with Japanese gin.This was the first show that we here at Sake On Air have recorded satellite following Japan entering a State of Emergency due to the impact of the COVID-19, which means that the audio is a bit rougher than our listeners might be used to. At the time of releasing this episode, the State of Emergency has been released across all of Japan’s 47 prefectures, including Tokyo, and things are slowly beginning to shift back into motion, however we’ll likely continue to record a few more episodes remotely before getting everyone together for our standard format at the Japan Sake & Shochu Information Center. We just kindly ask for your patience and understanding as we gradually transition into the world ahead of us along with the rest of you. 







    Thanks for tuning in everyone.Take care & Kampai!Sake On Air is made possible with the generous support of the Japan Sake & Shochu Makers Association and is broadcast from the Japan Sake & Shochu Information Center in Tokyo. The show is a co-production between Export Japan and Potts.K Productions, with audio production by Frank Walter.Our theme, “Younger Today Than Tomorrow” is composed by forSomethingNew for Sake On Air.

    • 59 min
    Know Your Hosts: Rebekah Wilson-Lye & John Gauntner

    Know Your Hosts: Rebekah Wilson-Lye & John Gauntner

    Here it is! The final installment of our “Know Your Hosts” series, introducing our listeners to the minds and motivations behind Sake on Air.For the first half of this week’s show, we have Rebekah Wilson-Lye in the hot seat. Currently the head of international marketing and public relations for Japan Craft Sake Company, we delve into not only the personal journey that led her from New Zealand to the Izu Peninsula, but also her evolution in the industry as she went from school teacher, to gourmet dining guide, to spearheading innovative sake projects with the likes of Takashi Murakami and Hidetoshi Nakata, all while carving out her own unique niche as a staunch advocate for the betterment of the industry as a whole.Following her, our man on the mixing boards Frank Walter interviews the sake guy himself, Mr. John Gauntner. Seeing as how interviews with John are scattered across the interwebz in an array of formats, we wanted to mix it up a little bit. The result? A fun, lighthearted discussion that sidesteps a lot of the more conventional sake questions, instead attempting to peer into the sake habits of the man himself, and as a result, scoring a lot of enjoyable and entertaining industry tidbits along the way.







    If you enjoyed this or any of our shows here at Sake On Air, taking a moment to review and rating us on Apple Podcasts would be greatly appreciated. You can also share your thoughts and feelings about the show with us by mailing to questions@sakeonair.com.Say “Hi” to the team anytime at @sakeonair on  Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. If you’re so inclined, we actually have a YouTube channel, as well.Thanks for tuning in everyone. We'll be back in a couple of weeks.Until then, Stay Home & Kampai!







    Sake On Air is made possible with the generous support of the Japan Sake & Shochu Makers Association and is broadcast from the Japan Sake & Shochu Information Center in Tokyo. The show is a co-production between Export Japan and Potts.K Productions, with audio production by Frank Walter.Our theme, “Younger Today Than Tomorrow” is composed by forSomethingNew for Sake On Air.

    • 1 hr 13 min
    Dojima Sake with Tony Mitchell

    Dojima Sake with Tony Mitchell

    Like most all of our listeners, we’re keeping rather close to home these days. The nature of things makes it a bit challenging for the team to gather and record, but on the bright side, it’s given us the time to dig through the archives and finally get around to editing some of our on-the-road interviews that have been gradually piling up over the past several months. Starting this week, we bring you “Sake-On-Air-On-The-Road”!For this week’s show, Big Chris (Hughes) is interviewing Tony Mitchell, brewer at Cambridge’s pioneering Dojima Sake Brewery, in a conversation that took place on location at the brewery while Chris was back in the U.K. during a visit home in 2019.Dojima Sake Brewery’s plans are expansive and ambitious, and that ambition helping to drive the unprecedented model that Dojima is cultivating is palpable when listening to Tony’s passion for his craft and the lifestyle that he’s managed to cultivate around it. In addition to discussing the brewery’s exciting approach to crafting great sake while at the same time creating a cultural hub for Japan’s iconic beverage in the Cambridge countryside, the two also spend time discussing Tony’s days at Wakatakeya Sake Brewery in Fukuoka, and the experience that transformed the course of his life for good.Being on the road and at the brewery, you’ll likely be able to tell that we weren’t able to take advantage of our regular recording equipment. Your understanding is appreciated.







    If you’d like to help more sake-lovers find the show by reviewing and rating us on Apple Podcasts, it would mean the world to us. You can also send your thoughts and feelings about the show to questions@sakeonair.com, or say “Hi” to the team at @sakeonair on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. If you’re so inclined, we actually have a YouTube channel, as well.Thanks for tuning in everyone.Stay Home & Kampai!







    Sake On Air is made possible with the generous support of the Japan Sake & Shochu Makers Association and is broadcast from the Japan Sake & Shochu Information Center in Tokyo. The show is a co-production between Export Japan and Potts.K Productions, with audio production by Frank Walter.Our theme, “Younger Today Than Tomorrow” is composed by forSomethingNew for Sake On Air.

    • 44 min
    Hot Sake (Kanzake) 101

    Hot Sake (Kanzake) 101

    This week we’re tackling arguably one of the most misunderstood segments of the sake world:Kanzake, often simply referred to as, Hot Sake.For a complex web of reasons, the quality and general nature of hot (or warm) sake is still shrouded in generations of preconception and misconception. However along with an aggressive reexamination of “Why?” in relation to lost practices in food and beverage, kanzake is in the midst of a mini-resurgence, particularly in Japan. Over the past decade, not only the number, but the level of quality and creativity entrenched in dining and drinking establishments throughout Japan has grown dramatically. Even outside of traditional Japanese cuisine or izakaya dining, some of Japan (and the world’s) most lauded genre-bending restaurants have made elements of kanzake service not only a part of their beverage program, but a cornerstone to it. This week we have Justin Potts, Marie Nagata, Big Chris (Hughes) and Little Chris (Pellegrini) on the mics as we delve into kanzake history, experiences, terminology, service, and heating things up at home.For the already-converted, hopefully you’ll find some hot tips (!) to add to your arsenal. For those still on the fence or for anyone that’s previously been burned (!) by less-than-positive experiences, hopefully you’ll find reason to set out on another expedition of the kanzake landscape.Oh, and there’s a small supplement to this week’s episode over on our YouTube channel, as well!







    Help more sake-lovers find the show by reviewing and rating us on Apple Podcasts. Let us know what you thought about this or any of our shows to questions@sakeonair.com, or say “Hi” to the team at @sakeonair on  Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.If you happen to undertake any kanzake experiments at home, please do share the results and photos with us!







    Take care out there everyone.And don’t forget to Kampai!







    Sake On Air is made possible with the generous support of the Japan Sake & Shochu Makers Association and is broadcast from the Japan Sake & Shochu Information Center in Tokyo. The show is a co-production between Export Japan and Potts.K Productions, with audio production by Frank Walter.Our theme, “Younger Today Than Tomorrow” is composed by forSomethingNew for Sake On Air.

    • 1 hr 9 min
    Awamori 101

    Awamori 101

    To all of our listeners: thank you for your patience.As much as we go out of our way to include awamori as part of the broader shochu conversation, despite many months of listener requests, we have yet to do an entire episode dedicated to Okinawa’s incredible indigenous spirit. Until now!The progenitor of the entire shochu category, the now geographically indicated Ryukyu Awamori has been deeply tied to the lifestyle and culture of the Okinawan people for at least the past 600 years. With only 46 distilleries still officially producing this incredible spirit, awamori is poised to either take over the world with its unmatched depth and character, or gradually get folded into the world of shochu. This week Little Chris, aka Shochu Pro, aka Christopher Pellegrini is joined by Sebastien Lemoine and Justin Potts to go over the basics. What is it? Where did it come from? How is it made? How does it differ from products in the broader “shochu” category? We think awamori is in a position to transform both the demand for, and dialogue, around Japanese spirits. After this week’s episode, we hope you’ll think so too. Let us know what you think of the show by reviewing and rating us on Apple Podcasts. You can send your questions and comments about this or any of our shows to questions@sakeonair.com, or to @sakeonair on  Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Don't forget us on YouTube! April is shaping up to be a month of excitement, challenges and experimentation. We hope you’ll continue to join us for the ride. Until then, Kampai!







    Sake On Air is made possible with the generous support of the Japan Sake & Shochu Makers Association and is broadcast from the Japan Sake & Shochu Information Center in Tokyo. The show is a co-production between Export Japan and Potts.K Productions, with audio production by Frank Walter.Our theme, “Younger Today Than Tomorrow” is composed by forSomethingNew for Sake On Air.

    • 59 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
18 Ratings

18 Ratings

Domenic Alonge ,

Invaluable asset

For people around the world who do not live in Japan, and do not speak Japanese, but really love Sake, this podcast is invaluable. The multiple hosts are deeply involved in the Sake industry in Japan and offer insights that can’t be found anywhere else. There passion for the best beverage in the world is evident. Please please please keep making more episodes. Thank you hosts and thank you to the JSS for supporting this awesome podcast.

AaronG ,

Content is amazing

Really great insight into the industry and culture surrounding sake and a little bit beyond. Audio could use a little help... but still worth listening too.

Chuenwinglam ,

Seems like good show

Seems like a good show, but the audio is quite horrible.

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