The Leading Area for Japanese Wine! 5 Shops with Delicious Koshu Wine from Yamanashi
Yamanashi, the area where Japanese wine was first created, is also where about 30% of Japanese wine is made. Kofu, in the center of the prefecture, has a lot of shops where you can enjoy delicious wine. Here are 5 places you can indulge in Koshu wine.
1. Koshu Izakaya Sakekura
"Koshu" is the ancient name for Yamanashi. This is a restaurant where you can enjoy liquor and wine along with Yamanashi regional dishes like Koshu Nigai (1,200 JPY (excl. tax)), steamed shellfish. The wine available comes from is Koshu wine from the Asaya Budoshu brand, which is made in a winery in Katsunuma. The grapes are of the Koshu variety, which was originally cultivated in Katsunuma and are now one of Japan's top types of grapes for wine. You can enjoy a glass (500 JPY (excl. tax)) or a half-bottle (1,500 JPY (excl. tax) for 360ml), but they also have the Kachofugetsu series of wine, which includes Hana Rouge (3,900 JPY (excl. tax)), Tori Blanc (3,900 JPY (excl. tax)), Kaze Vert (3,900 JPY (excl. tax)) and Tsuki Noir (3,900 JPY (excl. tax)).
Regional dish set
This is a dining bar that offers original Japanese dishes using mostly local Yamanashi ingredients. They have a variety of liquors that match their dishes, but the wine is only Yamanashi wine. All of the wines available are made with passion, and they have 150 bottles from 100 varieties. The glass of wine is a different brand every day, and costs between 700 JPY - 1,000 JPY (excl. tax). Try the Koshu Malt Beef Loin Roast Stewed in Red Wine (1,500 JPY (excl. tax)) made with Yamanashi beef and Yamanashi wine.
This is an Italian dining bar where you can try cheese from all over the world. They have lots of liquor available, including a daily wine special. There are about 50 kinds of wine, both red and wine. The price depends on what's available, but a glass can be ordered starting at 760 JPY and a bottle from 3,000 JPY. Please try the Parmeggiano and Bella Lodi made in a cheese oven (1,300 JPY (excl. tax)) and the Five-Cheese Pizza (1,500 JPY (excl. tax)). Also, the Rib Roast Steak (2,900 JPY (excl. tax)) goes very well with red wine.
4. BAR ITALIANO LAUGHTER
This is a bar where you can enjoy delicious food and liquor. The chic interior is complemented by jazz, so it's perfect for a drink or two with friends. A glass of wine starts at 540 JPY (incl. tax). They have different dishes that go well with wine, such as pizza (starting at 790 JPY (incl. tax)) and pasta (starting at 1,140 JPY (incl. tax)), as well as courses with 7-9 dishes that you can share with others (reservations required, only for 3 or more people; 2,500 JPY, 3,000 JPY, and 3,500 JPY).
5. Shiki no Ajisai
This is an izakaya where you can relax and stretch your legs in a horigotatsu (table set into the floor) in a private room or enjoy a half-private space separated by noren curtains. They have some of Yamanashi's most famous wines available, such as Colline Standard Blanc (1,380 JPY (incl. tax)) from Katsunuma and Puchi Lumiere (2,580 JPY (incl. tax)) from Fuefuki. Glasses start at 400 JPY (incl. tax). You should also try the Bushu (1,850 JPY (incl. tax)) a blend of wine and shochu (distilled liquor) that you can only find in Yamanashi.
There are 4 areas with wineries within Kofu where you can take a tour and have a wine tasting, so why not check it out? Kaiterasu, a facility that introduces the prefecture's domestic products, also has 220 wines from 37 companies from around Yamanashi that you can try.
*Please note that the information in this article is from the time of writing or publication and may differ from the latest information.
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