The Joy of Sake
On August 21st, 271 of the world’s finest sakes will be featured along with 14 of Hawaii’s finest restaurants in the annual Joy of Sake event at the Honolulu Academy of Arts.
This year marks the ninth year of The Joy of Sake: America’s Largest Sake Celebration. A noteable change for the event this year is a switch in venue from the Convention Center to the beautiful setting and open-air atmosphere of the Honolulu Academy of Arts.
Photos: Courtesy of ThE Honolulu Academy of Arts
Sake tasting areas will be set up along the Academy’s cool, open corridors, with restaurant stations located in the Academy’s various courtyards.
The Joy of Sake is the largest sake-tasting outside Japan, and has been held annually since 2001. It features premium sakes submitted as entries to the U.S. National Sake Appraisal, a rigorous blind tasting held in Honolulu every year with ten judges from Japan and the U.S.
Of the 271 sakes available for tasting that night, 129 are not available in the U.S. You have to go to Japan to find them, so it’s a rare treat as well.
On the menu this year to taste and pair with sake are dishes from 14 restaurants, including Hale Aina Award-winning restaurants: Nobu Waikiki, Gyotaku, Chai’s Island Bistro, TOWN, Halekulani (Lewer’s Lounge) and Hoku’s. Here is a list of all of the participating restaurants and what’s being served.
- Chai’s Island Bistro
Shredded Green Papaya Salad with Poached Prawn and Tamarind Vinaigrette
New Style Tuna Tataki—Garlic Chips, Sweet Onion, Kaiware, Wakame with Garlic Aoli Ponzu
Featured Dish: Okinawan Sweet Potato and Haupia Pie
Ume-dare Somen Noodles—Okra, Young Ginger, Poached Chicken and Dashi Gelee with Sour Plum Dressing
- Hale Macro
Organic Kale and Kula Strawberry Salad with Sesame, Cashew and Tofu Dressing
- Lewers Lounge (Halekulani)
Sous Vide of Short Ribs with Star Anise and Local Greens
Hoku’s Fresh Island Sashimi Hamachi with Grilled Shishito Pepper, Ahi Tataki with Bonito Aioli and Soy Gel, Snapper with Grapefruit Brulee, and Salmon Gavloy with Celery and Chiso Salad, and Hoku’s Chef’s Special Ochazuke
Steamed Abolone with Dashi Gelee
- Nobu Waikiki
Yellowtail Sashimi w/Jalapeno
- The Joy of Sake Izakaya presented by Marians
Shichimi Crusted Scallop Salad with Yuzu Sea Salt Foam, Okara Bean Curd with Clams and Vegetables, Pork Belly and Bamboo Shoots with Bonito
Braised Kulana Oxtail, Yaki Orisotto and Hot Mustard
Tako Sunomono—Octopus Salad with Wakame and Summer Cucumber
Ahi Yuke (Marinated Ahi on Cucumbret Nest w/Fuji Apple and Quail Egg)
Candied Ginger Ice Cream Sandwich
Photos: Courtesy of the Honolulu Academy of Arts
Purchase your tickets by this Friday, August 7, 2009 and you will be able to attend a “Sake 101” workshop at the Honolulu Academy of Arts for FREE to learn more about sake:
Photo: Couretsy of
Sake 101 Workshop
Monday, August 10, 2009, 5:30-6:30pm
Honolulu Academy of Arts – Doris Duke Theatre
Five members and their guests will be chosen at this workshop to attend the last level of sake judging at the US Sake Appraisal on Thursday, August 20, 2009.
The Joy of Sake takes place on August 21st from 6:00 to 8:30 p.m. Tickets are available for $70. If tickets are purchased directly from the Honolulu Academy of Arts, a tax-deductible $20 goes to the museum.
Buy your tickets online at the Academy’s web site or call Megan Hiramoto at 808-532-6099.