Virtual Introduction to Sake Event

On February 25, the Embassy of Japan hosted a virtual sake seminar titled “The A to Z of Sake: Exploring the basics, culture and food pairing of Japan’s National Drink”. The event was held in cooperation with Toronto-based sake sommelier, Mr. Michael Tremblay who has been making a great contribution to the understanding and promotion of sake. He was also inducted as a Sake Samurai* in 2018.

Mr. Tremblay works as a sommelier for a Japanese restaurant in Toronto with a wide range of brands of sake called “Ki Modern Japanese Restaurant + Bar”. He is a certified WSET (Wine & Spirit Education Trust based in London, UK) sake and wine instructor and participated in the “International Wine Challenge” hosted by WSET as a Senior Sake judge. Recognizing that sake is a culture rooted in the region, he also devotes himself to the sake education business. He is a founder of the "Sake Scholar Course" where he teaches how the unique climate of the region influences the taste of sake.

During the event, Ambassador KAWAMURA Yasuhisa delivered his opening remarks. He noted that sake has been an important part of Japanese culture for centuries and it is still common in Japan today. He further mentioned that sake can be a nice addition to meals from anywhere around the world while providing health benefits.

During the event, Mr. Tremblay provided in-depth explanation about sake including the basics of sake, its cultural significance, health benefits, and how to pair with food that are easily obtained in Canada. After his presentation, Mr. Tremblay answered questions ranging from pairing sake with spicy food such as Indian food, whether the top grades of sake should be heated or not, and so forth. The seminar was able to convey to the audience that sake enhances the taste of ingredients and dishes and enriches the meal.

*Sake Samurai is a title awarded by the Japan Sake Brewers Association Junior Council to people who are committed to promoting sake and history and beauty of sake culture worldwide through various activities. There are currently around 90 people with the title of Sake Samurai in the world.

(The event is available at the link below.)
The A to Z of Sake: Exploring the basics, culture and food pairing of Japan’s National Drink

Ambassador Kawamura gives opening remarks

Mr. Tremblay talks about sake

Mr. Tremblay explains that sake is integrated in people’s lives in Japan throughout the four seasons Mr. Tremblay talks about “the synergistic effect” of pairing sake with foods like seafood and mushrooms to highlight the umami in them