How to Enjoy Tanaka Sake Brewery Kikkougura in Otaru

This place is written as [田中酒造亀甲蔵] in Japanese.

Tanaka Sake Brewery Kikkougura is a part of Tanaka Sake Brewery, Otaru’s most renowned local sake producer. Situated in Nobukacho, Otaru City, near Minami Otaru station, this building, erected in 1905 during the Meiji era, holds the distinction of being designated a historical landmark by the city of Otaru. Visitors can embark on a factory tour and indulge in tastings of up to 10 sake brands.

For those who do not consume alcohol and children, there are cakes crafted with sake lees available. Additionally, a souvenir shop offers unique items exclusive to this factory. One such special sake is Takaragawa (寳川), whose name combines “Takara,” meaning treasure, and “Gawa” or “Kawa,” meaning river. Tanaka’s Sake is crafted using 100% Hokkaido rice and pristine water sourced beneath the factory. During the summer, visitors can even sample this water outside the building.

A standout offering is the New Year’s Sake, Hatsuhitsuji (初未), known as Daiginjo (大吟醸), boasting a delightful, fruity flavor akin to wine. It is hailed as one of the finest sakes in Japan.

In recent years, Tanaka Sake Brewery has consistently earned prestigious awards at international sake competitions. Particularly noteworthy is their Junmai sake “Takaragawa,” which won the gold medal at the 2021 U.S. National Sake Appraisal. This recognition underscores Tanaka Sake Brewery’s position as one of Hokkaido’s most promising sake producers.

In Hokkaido, there has been a recent surge in wineries. Due to climate change, Hokkaido has garnered attention as a grape-growing region, leading to a thriving wine industry. However, it is important to support establishments like Tanaka Sake Brewery, which continue to preserve Japan’s traditional sake despite these trends.

Open Hours

  • Shop: 9:00 – 18:00
  • Factory tour: 9:00 – 17:30, about 30 minutes

Admission fee

  • free

Parking

  • 30 cars
  • 5 buses

Access

  • 10minutes walk from Minami Otaru station
  • Take a Sansaku-bus by Chuo bus to Tanakashuzo Kikkougura mae(田中酒造亀甲蔵前)

Neighborhood

  • Seven and eleven in the same area.
  • Kitaichi Glass
  • Otaru music box
  • Otaru Canal