Visiting Kobe and Sake Breweries in Nada

Everyone in Japan has heard of Nada sake at least once in their lives. Characterized by a sharp and dry flavor, it is sometimes referred to as the “Nada man’s sake”. The five areas where this sake is produced are known as the “Nadagogo (five villages of Nada)”, and are located along the coast of Hyogo Prefecture. These areas have many historic sake breweries and are renowned for sake production in Japan. The areas are ideally located near the production area of the high-quality “Yamada Nishiki” brewer’s rice, where the subsoil “Miyamizu” water of the mineral-rich Rokko Mountains is gathered and the cold winter wind blows down from Mount Rokko to enhance the flavor of the sake. They are also conveniently close to a harbor, making transportation efficient and helping them to grow into major sake production areas.

A sake brewery

Uozaki-go, Mikage-go, and Nishi-go are three of the five villages of Nada, and are located in the Nada and Higashi Nada Wards of Kobe City. These small areas are lined with famous sake makers and some of them offer tours as well as free samples. Each of the breweries produces different flavors varying from sharp and dry to smooth and sweet. Take a stroll through the breweries of Nada and have a sake-tasting experience to see the depth of Japanese sake for yourself.

Recommended Sake-tasting Stroll Routes in Nada

Start at Oishi Station on the Hanshin Railway, go to the Kobe Konan Muko no Sato (Museum & Souvenir Shop of Konan Pickles) east of the Sawanotsuru Sake Museum along the Togagawa River, the Kobe Shushinkan Brewery along the Ishiyagawa River, go further east to the Hakutsuru Sake Brewery Museum, the Kikumasamune Sake Museum near the Sumiyoshi-gawa River, the Sakuramasamune Memorial Museum “Sakuraen”, Hamafukutsuru Ginjo Kobo (Sake Brewery & Souvenir Shop), and reach your goal at Uozaki Station on the Hanshin Railway.

Total distance: about 6.1 kilometers (about 3.8 miles)

Required time: about 1.5 hours (excluding time for tours of sake breweries)