Yokoso! Japan - 通訳ガイド的日本再発見

海外から日本に来る外国人観光客の方々に、通訳ガイドの視点から、日本の良さを伝えたい…日頃見慣れた風景もあらためて見れば新鮮に映る、そんな視点で日本を再発見し、通訳ガイドの方もすぐ活用できるように、英語で紹介します。

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ホイサムジャイ

Author:ホイサムジャイ
放浪癖あり(笑)。好きなTV番組は「モヤモヤさまぁ~ず」「ちい散歩」「タモリ倶楽部」「ぶらり途中下車の旅」などなど。。。良く言えば「自由人」、悪く言えば「鉄砲玉」(←出たら戻って来んのかい!)

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飛鳥山でたまたま知り合ったグループに、お酒をすすめられ。。。
ハイハイ、いい気分でございます~(*^q^*)

では、ほろ酔い気分で、次の場所へまいりましょう!

やってきたのは「千鳥が淵」。
ほほぉ~っ、桜が満開ですね^^

chidorigafuchi01.jpg

お堀にズームインしてみると。。。

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このコントラストは、春ならではですね~(^-^)b

chidorigafuchi03.jpg

水辺の桜って、なんでこんなに味わい深い「画」になるんでしょうかね???
・・・ん、ん、ん?さっきは気づかなかったんですが、あの「大きな玉ねぎ」は、「武道館」ですねっ!(嬉)
ちょっと近づいてって。。。

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お、お、お、あ、危ないっ!w(゜0゜)w
危うくお堀に落ちそうに。。。

・・・そう、お酒いただいているんで、「千鳥足」なんっすよ(笑)

ちなみに、なんで「千鳥」かっていうと、そもそも千鳥の足は、体が後ろに傾いたりしたときに支えてバランスをとる「親指」が退化してるんです。で、かつ歩くときに足もやや交差気味なんで、フラフラして不安定な感じがするところからきてるんですねっ!

ではこのあたりで、いつものやつを。
本日は「千鳥足」・・・じゃなくて。。。その原因となる「日本酒」(Sake)で。

まずは「日本酒」の製造法について、いってみましょう。

Sake is produced by the multiple parallel fermentation of rice. The rice is polished to remove the protein and oils from the exterior of the rice grains, leaving behind starch. A more thorough milling leads to fewer congeners and generally a more desirable product.

Newly polished rice is allowed to "rest" until it absorbs enough moisture from the air not to crack when immersed in water. After this resting period, the rice is washed clean of the rice powder produced during milling and is steeped in water. The length of the soak depends on the degree to which the rice was polished, from several hours or even overnight for an ordinary milling to just minutes for highly polished rice.

After soaking, the rice is boiled in a large pot or it is steamed on a conveyor belt. The degree of cooking must be carefully controlled; overcooked rice will ferment too quickly for flavors to develop well and undercooked rice will only ferment on the outside. The steamed rice is then cooled and divided for different uses.

Some of the steamed rice is taken to a culture room and inoculated with kouji mold (麹, Aspergillus oryzae). The mold-laden rice is itself known as kouji and is cultivated until the growth of the fungus reaches the desired level. This takes about two days.

When the kouji is ready, the next step is to create the starter mash, known as shubo (酒母), or colloquially, moto. Kouji rice, water, and yeast are mixed together, and in the modern method, lactic acid is added to inhibit unwanted bacteria (in slower traditional methods, lactic acid occurs naturally). Next, freshly steamed rice is added and the yeast is cultivated over 10 to 15 days (in the modern method).

When the starter mash is ready, steamed rice, water, and more kouji are added once a day for three days, doubling the volume of the mash each time. Staggering things this way allows the yeast to keep up with the increased volume. The mixture is now known as the main mash, or moromi (醪).

The main mash then ferments. This takes two to six weeks. With high-grade sake, fermentation is deliberately slowed by lowering the temperature to 10°C (50°F) or less.

Unlike malt for beer, rice for sake does not have the necessary amylase to convert starch to sugar and so must undergo a process of multiple fermentation, in which starch is converted to sugar by the kouji, and sugar is converted to alcohol by yeast. With sake these two processes happen at the same time, not as separate steps, so sake is said to be made by multiple parallel fermentation.

After fermentation, sake is pressed to separate the liquid from the solids. With some sake, a small amount of distilled alcohol, called brewer's alcohol (醸造アルコール), is added before pressing in order to extract flavors and aromas that would otherwise stay in the solids. With cheap sake, a large amount of brewer's alcohol might be added to increase the volume of sake produced. Next, the remaining lees (a fine sediment) are removed, and the sake is carbon filtered and pasteurized. The sake is allowed to rest and mature and then it is usually diluted with water to lower the alcohol content from around 20% to 15% or so, before finally being bottled.

・・・という感じでしょうか。
では続きまして、「日本酒の指定」についても少々。

The Three Types of Special Designation Sake

Honjouzou-shu (本醸造酒), in which a slight amount of brewer's alcohol is added to the sake before pressing, in order to extract extra flavors and aromas from the mash. This term was created in the late 1960s to distinguish it, a premium sake, from cheaply made liquors to which large amounts of distilled alcohol were added simply to increase volume. Sake with this designation must be made with no more than 116 liters of pure alcohol added for every 1,000 kilograms of rice.

Junmai-shu (純米酒), "pure rice sake," made from only rice, water and kouji, with no brewer's alcohol or other additives. Before 2004, the Japanese government mandated that junmai-shu must be made from rice polished down to 70% or less of its original weight, but that restriction has been removed.

Ginjou-shu (吟醸酒), made from rice polished to 60% or less of its original weight. Sake made from rice polished to 50% or lower is called daiginjou-shu (大吟醸酒).
The term junmai can be added to ginjou or daiginjou, resulting in junmai ginjou and junmai daiginjou. However, as distilled alcohol is added in small amounts to ginjou and daiginjou to heighten the aroma, not to increase volume, a junmai daiginjou is not necessarily a better product than a daiginjou made with brewer's alcohol.

・・・ですねっと。

お酒のハナシをしてると、ホント、まっすぐ帰れなくなりますよねっ!
またいい塩梅に、帰り道に都合よく「居酒屋」もありますんで。。。

・・・そう、「避け(酒)ては通れない」道(笑)
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