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The Birth of Saké


Erik Shirai

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About the Movie

In a world where most mass produced goods are heavily automated, a small group of artisans must brave tough working conditions to preserve the ancient tradition that we have come to know as saké. THE BIRTH OF SAKÉ reveals the story of passionate saké-makers and what it takes to make world-class saké at Yoshida Brewery, a 144-year-old family-owned small brewery in northern Japan. The workers at Yoshida are an eclectic cast of characters, ranging from 20 to 70 years old. As a vital part of this crew that must live and work for a six-month period through the brutal winter, charismatic veteran brewmaster Yamamoto (65) and the brewery’s sixth-generation heir, Yasuyuki Yoshida (27), are prime keepers of this tradition. Currently, stiff competition and the coming retirement of experienced workers intensify the pressure of preserving quality of taste, tradition and brand reputation for Yoshida Brewery. As craftsmen who must dedicate their whole lives to the making of this world-class saké, their private sacrifices are often sizable and unseen.

Customer Reviews


The trailers showed me everything i needed to know.

Great documentary if you speak Japanese

While the trailer has English subtitles, the version I downloaded from iTunes does not have them. I am waiting for this problem to be resolved. Otherwise it is very interesting though “I Live for Sushi” is a little better.

Beautiful Documentary but Subtitles Missing

Beautifully shot and moving documentary about the saké-making process and those who dedicate much of their lives to preserving tradition. However the subtitles for the film are not present in this version and the audio is almost exclusively in Japanese. I have raised the issue with the iTunes Store and they are promising to investigate.

The Birth of Saké
View in iTunes
  • $9.99
  • Genre: Documentary
  • Released: 2016

Customer Ratings