What does it take to realize a dream of American craft sake? And even more specifically, Brooklyn craft sake?
This week Chris Hughes and Justin Potts catch up with Brian Polen, co-founder and president of Brooklyn Kura, New York’s first sake brewery, on his (relatively) recent trip to the sake island in the pacific.
Having officially opened to the public in 2018, the trail being blazed by Brian, along with co-founder and brewmaster, Brandon Doughan, is one that is already informing a future of international, locally-made craft sake as new breweries spring to life across the globe.
We dig into the origin story, as well as explore the excitement and challenges that go along with trying to, not only create and run a sake brewery, but communicate the infinite potential of sake to a world still largely unacquainted with the magical rice beverage.
We’re happy to finally get this interview out into the world, as we’ve actually been sitting on this one since the SOA early days. This week’s flow may be a bit more rough around the edges compared to our more recent offerings (we were still very much getting our feet wet at this point), but the stories and nuggets of insight that Brian shares are fascinating, and going to be relevant to sake lovers, the sake-curious, and those that may be looking to make new professional forays into the world of sake for years to come.
If in the area, be sure to pop into the tap room for a visit! Brooklyn Kura is located inside Industry City, at 68 34th Street, Brooklyn, NY.
*We’ll be back at Aoyama Sake Flea at the Farmer’s Market at United Nations University in Aoyama (Tokyo) on March 30-31st. If anyone plans to be in the area, be sure to pop in and say hello! We’ll be doing several recordings both days and have some more exciting guests lined up for the Spring rendition of the bi-annual sake celebration!
*You may notice a string of new episodes trickling out with more regularity than usual in the coming weeks. We actually have some content stocked up that we want to get out, and we’re working on some new developments, as well (details coming soon!) As we transition a bit you may notice a few more interviews or mini-episodes pop up here and there. We look forward to sharing more details on our new developments soon, but until then, enjoy!
The more reviews we get, the more we can spread the sake love! Please do take a moment to share your thoughts, if you’re so inclined.
Until next week, Kampai!