Five Select Izakaya in Sendai for Fabulous Sake

The city of Sendai in the Tohoku Region is blessed with high quality water and rice. Because it is a producer of rice, it has many breweries that make outstanding sake. We introduce five izakaya restaurants in Sendai that have great selections of local sake.

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1. Syunsen

At this restaurant, which is just five minutes by foot from the East Exit of Sendai Station, you can enjoy a variety of sake together with food made primarily with seasonal ingredients from Sendai. The sake selection includes about 40 different labels, mainly from Sendai, but also from around the country. There is a Syunsen-no Kakushi-zake (Syunsen's secret sake) that the staff changes as they see fit, as well as a wide variety of shochu and wines. If you're in for a night of proper drinking, the all-you-can-drink Nondakure Course (2,500 JPY (excl. tax) for 90 minutes and 3,000 JPY (excl. tax) for 120 minutes), that includes all brands, is recommended.

2. Goshuinsen Sendai Branch

This is a restaurant on Aoba Street known for its food that is full of regional flavors. The seafood, that includes sashimi of fish caught that morning, is particularly popular. It also serves beef tongue, which Sendai is famous for. The sake to be enjoyed with such outstanding food numbers more than 30 different labels. There are seasonal recommendations, and at times, there are "secret sake" that are not on the menu. There is also an all-you-can-drink course for local sake, which is recommended if you want to get your fill.

2. Goshuinsen Sendai Branch

3. Mimasumitsukura

This restaurant has numerous private rooms that accommodate a variety of party sizes ranging from 4 to 64, so it is recommended for groups. It offers a wide selection of courses starting at 3,500 JPY (incl. tax) with endless drinks. The sake selection includes local sake from Miyagi, as well as a variety of sake from across the Tohoku Region. You can even try some rare sake such as Juyondai from Yamagata and Hiroki from Fukushima. Ten local sake from the Tohoku Region can be added to the all-you-can-drink courses for just 500 JPY extra. It is recommended for sake lovers.

3. Mimasumitsukura

4. Totobisuto

This is a cozy restaurant with just nine seats, located three minutes on foot from Hirose-dori Station on the public subway system. It is a great place to enjoy fresh seafood procured from the Sendai Market and Sanriku oysters. The oysters are served as Oysters on the Shell (390 JPY/each (incl. tax)), for which freshness is key, as well as prepared in a variety of different ways such as grilled, steamed, fried and marinated in olive oil. The seafood bowl is also a popular item here. It includes eight to 10 fresh toppings of the day and starts at 800 JPY. The sake includes local sake that go well with oysters, and some labels that are only available that day, so try a few to find your favorite.

4. Totobisuto

5. Sendaihan

This restaurant, which has been popular for about 40 years, is decorated like a museum, full of paintings and calligraphy. The dishes the food is served in are also antiques and works by ceramic artists and are just one representation of the restaurant's dedication to quality. The owners are both born and raised in Sendai, so the ingredients are all seasonal items procured directly from the producers. They are just as particular about the sake and have rare sake such as Juyondai and Denshu in the cooler at all times and also serve items only available here, such as sake entered into competitions and sake that are only shipped once a year. This is a restaurant to satisfy the sake aficionado.

Sendai not only has wonderful sake, but also great ingredients. Enjoy a fantastic evening there.

*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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Writer: miki shoya

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