Gourmet Traveller

Old times’ sake

Yukino Ochiai is talking about umami, the fifth basic taste after sweet, sour, salty and bitter. She describes umami as the “double-bass” of the flavour orchestra: a deep sense of savoury deliciousness on the tongue. But she’s not talking about the food of Japan. She’s talking about the experience of drinking sake made using age-old brewing methods.

Ochiai is a Sydney-based sake importer and international sake judge. In 2017, she was named Australia’s first female Sake Samurai,

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