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Food & Beverage

Japanese sake Kubota takes on sparkling wine

Brewer Asahi-Shuzo updates its main brand for pandemic-era drinkers

Kubota Sparkling comes in a sleek designer bottle with a Champagne gold label to show off the new direction sake is taking. (Photo by Shinichi Hashimoto) 

NIIGATA, Japan -- The maker of Kubota sake is attempting to attract some of the sparkling wine market's 20- and 30-something fans with its first effervescent sake, one it is marketing as going well with Western cuisine.

Asahi-Shuzo Sake Brewing, based in Nagaoka, Niigata Prefecture, spent more than a year developing Kubota Sparkling as the pandemic kept people at home and stimulated demand for more adventurous refreshments.

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