By: Stephen Allison
K&L Staff Member
After tasting Tamagawa's impressive Red Label Junmai I knew I had to try the Daiginjo. I'm glad I did. The nose is an alluring blend of anise, mint, white pepper, pear, honeydew, and subtle nuances of white blossom and grassy green tea. The aroma is a delight, and one that changes as the sake warms. Heart of Gold is best enjoyed right out of the refrigerator but don't keep it chilled. As it warms in the glass, the anise changes to sweeter licorice and the fruit elements better balance the non-fruit spicy qualities. Structure is big for a daiginjo with a stout body, intense flavors and savory texture. If subtlety and elegance it what you're after, Takasago's Divine Droplets or Kokuryu's Crystal Dragon would better serve. However, those brews don't have the twang of crisp acidity or tingle of spicy white pepper on the finish that Heart of Gold does. A sake for Syrah and Gin drinkers, Heart of Gold is like Red Label in that there is no other sake like it.