Lying just to the northwest of Kyoto, Shiga is one of Japan’s few inland prefectures, surrounded by green mountains sloping into fertile plains, with the massive Lake Biwa at the very center of the valley, taking up fully one sixth of the total area of the prefecture.
The Uehara Brewery was founded in 1862 and is located near the shores of Lake Biwa. Located as they are in rice country they are informed by traditional practices and a deep connection to agriculture. All of the rice used at Uehara Shuzo is locally grown, contracted to local farmers committed to sustainable farming practices. They use over thirty different local strains of sake rice and still employ wooden presses and fermentation vats in their traditional brewing process, something the 7th generation family brewers take a lot of pride in. They are also one of just a handful of sake producers that make sake without the use of cultivated yeasts, instead preferring strains native to the brewery to impart a truly unique body and finish.