The rice ball begins to roll….

A few months ago, I signed up to receive a monthly online saké newsletter written by John Gauntner, a professional saké taster here in Japan (  This turned out to be a very good idea.  As I was reading my 2nd newsletter, I came across a link with the title “Do you want to work in a sake brewery?”.  Now, for someone who is thinking about trading in their career to become a saké brewer, could you imagine a better link?  Needless to say, I clicked, and was taken to a website for a saké brewery in Osaka, called Sakahan (酒半) (a.k.a Mukune), which was accepting applications from foreigners to work in the brewery for one week.  Not wasting a moment, I filled out and submitted the detailed application with my hopes filled high that I would surely be accepted- this internship program was designed for me!  The next day, after patiently checking my hotmail account every 30 minutes, the response came with the subject:  “Mukune!”.  Elated that I had been accepted, I opened the email to find, exclamation mark aside, that in fact I had not been accepted for this year’s brewing season, but was number one on the waiting list for next year.  Somewhat disappointed, I replied that yes, I would like to participate next year and because I am living in Tokyo, I would be able to fill in with short notice should someone have to cancel.  To this an excellent email was received:  I would be able to join a March session for those foreigners currently residing in Japan!  The rice ball has begun to roll for this little grasshopper.  In just under 4 weeks, I will travel to Osaka for the beginning of my brewing adventures- very exciting. Sakahan brewery had its first wave of interns in early February, and you can read about their experience here:  It was in fact the internship blog that inspired me to start this one.  Thanks for reading.

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February 2009
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