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SakéOne Stands With Japan

23 March, 2011

Oregon based SakéOne Urges the Beverage Industry to Rally for Japan Relief

Forest Grove, Oregon– As the restaurant and beverage community among many other groups rally to support relief efforts in Japan, Oregon craft saké brewer and importer SakéOne  has undertaken several initiatives to help with relief efforts. SakéOne is calling upon the wine industry to be of support. Wineries in particular have a strong affinity with Japan on many levels particularly given that both brewers and wineries are reliant on nature for their existence and sustenance.  In addition, many wineries have enjoyed a strong trade relationship with Japan over the years, and given the already charitable nature of the industry, here is an urgent cause to rally around.

One particular direct channel that many can support immediately is Mercy Corps which exists to alleviate suffering, poverty and oppression by helping people build secure, productive and just communities around the globe.   They have created an alliance with Peace Winds in Japan which has offered critical support for people in need since 1996 and has teams working on the ground now.   Mercy Corps and SakéOne have had a sustained partnership over time, and therefore companies and individuals can be of immediate support by going to  SakéOne President Steve Vuylsteke states, “ I am asking the wine community in the United States to join me and SakéOne in assisting the relief effort by contributing what you can to Mercy Corps- our friends and their community in Japan need our help more than ever now,” he said,  “On top of the devastating daily findings, the cultivation of rice for eating and brewing has been compromised in many areas and many sake breweries have been severely damaged or lost.   Imagine if a tragedy of this magnitude hit the area and communities of our wineries, we would want our community and others to be of support.”

An additional fundraising opportunity for Portland area residents will occur on Saturday, March 26th at the traditional spring kura blessing, a Shinto ceremony, presided over by the Reverend Koichi Barrish of the Tsubaki Grand Shrine of Granite Falls, Washington.   An important ceremony celebrated in the spring, this annual event will feature a Mercy Corps representative this year who will be taking donations on site.  The event will be at SakéOne’s brewery at 820 Elm Street in Forest Grove, Oregon. For more information please contact 1-800-550- SAKE.

In addition, SakéOne’s tasting room in Forest Grove will donate 10% of the sales this upcoming weekend to Mercy Corps with a “Fill the Sakétini Jar” whereby donors of $3 or more get a complimentary sakétini for their generosity.   In the Portland area, SakéOne’s home market, the company will be donating product to three local fundraisers as well as provide product, staffing and marketing support to an upcoming event entitled “KANPAI! - Empty Your Glass for Japan” on May 1st. The event is being organized by local saké by local sake enthusiasts and professionals in coordination with Mercy Corps.   The events will feature music, food, saké and a silent auction. For more information about “KANPAI! - Empty Your Glass for Japan,” please visit

On April 21st in New York City, SakéOne together with Ambassador Wine & Spirits will hold a fundraiser tasting with Greg Lorenz, Sakémaster at SakéOne wherein he’ll speak about the education he received to craft Oregon saké from Yoshinogawa and Momokowa Brewing Japan both of whom trained him extensively at the kura in Forest Grove.  Ambassador is donating 10% of sales to relief efforts and more details will be forthcoming.  In the meantime, for more information on the Portland and New York fundraisers, please contact Dewey Weddington at or 1-503-357-7056 x 242 or cell 503-310-1988.

SakéOne is an importer of Japan’s finest sakés and is America's premium saké company. Founded in 1992, SakéOne has been crafting strictly junmai ginjo quality saké at its state-of-the-art kura (brewery) in the heart of the Willamette Valley: Oregon’s craft beer-brewing, spirits and winemaking mecca. In 2010, SakéOne’s Momokawa “Ruby” Junmai Ginjo earned a silver medal at the prestigious all-Japanese U.S. National Saké Appraisal, no small feat for an American saké producer. Though SakéOne undoubtedly honors tradition, their Oregonian pioneering spirit is constantly evolving and has truly defined Oregon craft saké.

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