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The Birthplace of Japanese Wine

The Birthplace of Globally Recognized Japanese Wine

Famous for its production of grapes, Yamanashi Prefecture is also the birthplace of winemaking in Japan. Records indicate that in Kofu around 1870-1871, Hironori Yamada and Norihisa Takuma were the first to make grape wine in Japan, using the Koshu and crimson glory vine varieties. A number of wineries sprang up over the proceeding 140 years so that today there are more than 80 throughout the prefecture. Out of the wines produced in Japan, those made in Yamanashi in particular are said to be first-rate in terms of both production volume and taste.

There are four wineries in Kofu: Sadoya, Chateau Sakaori, Shingen Wine, and Domaine Q. Sadoya has the longest history of the four. It is an old winery established in 1917 and is still producing wine today in its nearly half an acre of cellars.

Chateau Sakaori is located in the Sakaori area of Kofu, overlooking the Kofu basin. Chateau Sakaori uses grapes grown in cooperation with a cultivation consultant. It makes inexpensive and delicious domestic wines for daily enjoyment. Some staff members are certified as Japanese wine experts and so are a good source of advice on wine selection.

At Shingen Wine the whole process from grape cultivation through winemaking is carried out by one person under the maxim that, “good wine is not possible without good grapes.” The winery uses four grape varieties, making the most of their respective characteristics in its wine production.

Domaine Q produces wine from Pinot Noir, which is a rare variety in Japan. Its Nounoubeau, which is said to be the first new wine released in Japan every year, is definitely worth trying.

Each of these producers has a strong commitment to winemaking. Most of them welcome visitors for tours and some offer wine tasting. So, why not taste for yourself the merits of Japanese wine produced in Yamanashi?

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Food & Beverages

Kofu samurai Wi-Fi spot

Wi-Fi can be used free of charge near facilities in Kofu displaying a "KOFU SAMURAI Wi-Fi" logo sticker.

"KOFU SAMURAI Wi-Fi" logo sticker.

Usage Restrictions

  • 60 minutes/session (Number of times unlimited)
  • Available in five languages (connectional announcement displays)

See the Kofu Map for the locations of KOFU SAMURAI Wi-Fi Spots.

Details for using KOFU SAMURAI Wi-Fi