Keeper Collection #SommChat Guest #SakeSommelier Michael Carlson

8/10 Sake Sommelier Michael Carlson

See what you missed at #SommChat on 8/10 as we chatted with Certified Sake Sommelier Michael Carlson of Uchiko.

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): It’s time!! #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Welcome to #SommChat everyone! Tell your friends to join us to learn about #sake for the next hour from a newly certified #Sake #Sommelier!

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): We’d like to introduce everyone to #Sake professional Michael Carlson of @UchikoAustin joining us to answer ur sake Qs! #SommChat #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Good to see you again! @snottysomm #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): .@UchikoAusitn We’re glad to have u join us! I know I speak for all when I say “CONGRATULATIONS” on your recent certification! #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): If you’re joining us for #SommChat, please give a shout out to @UchikoAustin so he knows your here & can keep an eye out for your #sake Qs!

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): Hello everyone. Thanks for this opportunity to chat with you today. I’m thrilled to be here! Love my #sake! #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Don’t forget that EVERY tweet during this chat should include the #SommChat hashtag in order for everyone to see it!

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): As we ask @UchikoAustin our Qs, you’re welcome to ask him ur Qs as well! He’ll do his best to answer all Qs in the order they come #SommChat

@Sassodoro (Sassodoro): @keepercoll @UchikoAustin Hello! Ready to learn about Sake! #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): 1 lucky (and I mean REALLY lucky) SommChatter will win a $50 gift certificate to @UchikoAustin! #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): But don’t forget, you gotta tweet using #SommChat to win – Good Luck! Let’s start talking #sake w/ @UchikoAustin!

@RichardPF (Richard Auffrey): @keepercoll @uchikoaustin Was the certification from @JohnGauntner’s class? #SommChat #Sake

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): Thanks so much. Certification has been a fantastic experience! The certification was from @JohnGaunter’s class. @KeeperColl #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): He’s the “sake guy” with all the answers @JohnGauntner @KeeperColl #SommChat

@RichardPF (Richard Auffrey): @keepercoll @uchikoaustin Congrats, I was certified last year. @JohnGauntner runs a great class. #SommChat #Sake

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@RichardPF Congrats to you, as well. It’s great to be in the #sakeclub! @KeeperColl #SommChat

@RichardPF (Richard Auffrey): @uchikoaustin Thanks, the world can always use more sake advocates. @keepercoll #SommChat #Sake

@kelljokrause (Kelly Krause): @keepercoll @UchikoAustin Q for Michael: what makes the white/cloudy #sake taste sweet? #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@kelljokrause @keepercoll Nigori or cloudy sake is partially filtered, with sake kasu left in the mix. It adds the sweet… #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@kelljokrause @keepercoll honeydew flavor and cream soda texture many enjoy! #SommChat

@tenzingws (ENZING Wine&Spirits): @uchikoaustin What are some good cask strength #sake #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@tenzingws @KeeperColl Hmm… a great cast-strength sake. Most sake ABV is 16-18%, but you can often find Ginshu… #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@tenzingws @KeeperColl Ginshu is sake with ABV of about 20%. Harsh, but tasty! #SommChat

@tenzingws (ENZING Wine&Spirits): @uchikoaustin What do you think about #Sake in a can? It’s becoming popular? #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): @tenzingws @uchikoaustin It’s becoming popular, particularly in Japan. Most often it’s either sparkling sake or Futsu-table sake. #SommChat

@demilove (Douglas Trapasso): @keepercoll – Congrats to the two new Master Sommeliers from Texas! Has anyone here on #SommChat met/worked with them?

@kelljokrause (Kelly Krause): @keepercoll @UchikoAustin I’m a fan of the yokai berry & beef tongue. Any good #sake pairings for that? #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@kelljokrause @keepercoll I like a dry sake like Mirror of truth with citrusy dishes like the Yokai berry. For gyutan… #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@kelljocrause @KeeperColl go for a bigger sake with nutty notes. Bride of the Fox! #SommChat

@demilove (Douglas Trapasso): Do you evaluate Sakes the same way we do with wine; i.e., taking note of body, acidity, finish, etc? #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@demilove @KeeperColl Yes, definitely. But I focus on aroma, viscosity, flavor and finish. #SommChat

@RichardPF (Richard Auffrey): @uchikoaustin Any plans for the restaurant to celebrate Sake Day on Oct. 1? @keepercoll #SommChat #Sake

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@RichardPF @keepercoll Not yet, but what a fabulous idea! What would you like to see us do? #SommChat

@winesellersltd (Winesellers, Ltd): Better late than never, right? Hey #SommChat!

@BlissAdventure (Michael Housewright): @UchikoAustin, are there appellations for rice like there are for grapes, and if so how are they classified? #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@blissadventure @KeeperColl There are sake rice types that contribute much to the flavor of sake. As for regionality… #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@blissadventure @KeeperColl …there’s not as much of a correlation between region and flavor/aroma. Generally speaking, though.. #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@blissadventure @KeeperColl North and east is light and delicate. South and west is rich/robust. #SommChat

@womcatering (WordOfMouthCatering): @uchikoaustin what are important factors in shopping for sake to cook with? what kinds do you recommend? #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@womcatering @KeeperColl It depends on how you’re cooking it. If you’re giving the sake a lot of heat… #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@womcatering @KeeperColl … you don’t really need to use a super-premium sake. Heat masks flavor. Good ‘ole Gekkikan works. #SommChat

@BonVivantImport (Bon Vivant Imports): @uchikoaustin Hello! Thanks for your time & knowledge! Any favorite sake cocktails? or should it only be left alone? #sake #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@BonVivantImport @KeeperColl Loves my sake cocktails! Fresh juices with sake and a bit of acidity like lemon or lime makes… #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@BonVivantImport @KeeperColl for a great cocktail. We have the Pan Am- Apple, Watermelon, Sake, Bitters, Lemon. Yum! #SommChat

@WineTheory (Justin Harriman): @keepercoll @uchikoaustin What would you say is your go to #Sakepairing for fish, cheese, game meat? #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@WineTheory @keepercoll Fish: Dry sake–best is from Nada prefecure. Cheese: Fruity, aromatic sake. Gamey: It’s gotta be yamahai. #SommChat

@kelljokrause (Kelly Krause): @uchikoaustin @keepercoll How about the tradition of pouring sake for your partner? For good luck? (when served in the small box?) #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@kelljokrause @keepercoll It’s a sign of hospitality and care for your guest. You pour for your guest into a small vessel… #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@kelljokrause @keepercoll to show you care enough to pay attention to their needs. #SommChat

@kelljokrause (Kelly Krause): @uchikoaustin @keepercoll our waitress @UchiAustin had my boyfriend & I pour for each other, it’s now our tradition on date night. #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@kelljokrause @keepercoll @UchiAustin That is too cool, and very romantic. Be sure to say ‘hi’ next time you’re at ‘ko. #SommChat

@kelljokrause (Kelly Krause): @uchikoaustin @keepercoll I absolutely will! Do y’all offer #saketastings? I’ve done tequila & wine, but never with sake. #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@kelljokrause @keepercoll Oftentimes guests come to the bar saying they’ve never tried sake. We immediately taste them on several #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@kelljokrause @keepercoll We all love to do this. #SommChat

@kelljokrause (Kelly Krause): @uchikoaustin @keepercoll Very cool, can’t wait to expand my #sakepalette. Thanks for answering Q’s, this has been fun! #SommChat

@BlissAdventure (Michael Housewright): is there a way to know the origin of the rice by looking at the label? #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@blissadventure @KeeperColl Sometimes. Brewers are required to specify the rice type if in premium sakes where certified… #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@blissadventure @KeeperColl …sake rice is used. Look for Yamada Nishiki. It’s the best! #SommChat

@UchiAustin (Uchi Austin): Want to learn about #sake? Follow #SommChat and ask Uchiko’s Michael Carlson for the next 45min!

@tenzingws (ENZING Wine&Spirits): @uchikoaustin Red #sake is interesting. Have you tried any that you like? #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@tenzingws @KeeperColl Tried it. Not for me. #SommChat

@lisaiscooking (lisa lawless): @keepercoll @UchikoAustin has there been any slowdown in production of your favorite sakes since the tragedy in Japan? #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): @lisaiscooking @keepercoll The industry took a big hit. 22 breweries were completely destroyed and almost 400 had damage. #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .lisaiscooking @keepercoll That said, sake on the market now was made last year. We won’t see issues until 2012. #SommChat

@WineTheory (Justin Harriman): @uchikoaustin @keepercoll What kind of #Sake should I add to my winelist that would be a good introduction to sake for my guests? #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@WineTheory @keepercoll Offer a light sake, like Masumi Mirror of Truth. Pairs with almost anything. #SommChat

@VinoCaPisco (Countess Rose Perry): @JohnGauntner I find myself more attractive to unfiltered sake when eating sashimi. What is your favorite? & Why? cc @keepercoll #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@VinoCaPisco @keepercoll First, John’s my teacher–give me a few years to catch up! I like Yuki No Bosha nigori… #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@VinoCaPisco @keepercoll it’s partially filtered, soft and not overbearing. Perfect for sashimi. #SommChat

@MattMcGinnis (Matt McGinnis): .@uchikoaustin Are there any domestic sakes that you recommend? #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@MattMcGinnis @KeeperColl Great question. Sake One in Portland is making great, organic sake. #SommChat

@RichardPF (Richard Auffrey): @uchikoaustin @MattMcGinnis @KeeperColl I agree that @SakeOne is doing a great job in producing domestic sake #SommChat

@MattMcGinnis (Matt McGinnis): @uchikoaustin Glad to hear your endorsement of Sake One in Portland. I’ve had it, and want to taste it compared with others. #SommChat

@WineTheory (Justin Harriman): @uchikoaustin @keepercoll What are your favorite books about sake that I could look for to learn more on my own? #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@WineTheory @keepercoll The industry’s version of the Wine Bible is John’s Gauntner’s Sake Handbook. #SommChat

@BlissAdventure (Michael Housewright): @uchikoaustin @WineTheory @keepercoll I am ordering that book today #SommChat

@CultureMapATX (CultureMap Austin): Uchiko chat going on now: RT @UchiAustin: Want to learn about#sake? Follow #SommChat and ask Uchiko’s Michael Carlson for the next 45min!

@MattMcGinnis (Matt McGinnis): @uchikoaustin Do you offer any prix fixe menus with sake pairings? #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@MattMcGinnis @KeeperColl Uchi and Uchiko have daily chef’s tastings-omakase. We’ll gladly pair sake with omakase. #SommChat

@TexasWineGuy (William): @uchikoaustin any sakes worth cellaring in your opinion? Thoughts in general on sake cellaring? #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@TexasWineGuy @KeeperColl Sake is aged at the brewery and is usually meant to be consumed when young. That said… #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@TexasWineGuy @KeeperColl You can age sake if you keep it cold. Sato No Homare is great after about a year. #SommChat

@ShitMySommSays (Shit My Sommelier Says): @uchikoaustin Do sake sommeliers wear pins or purple, green and red belts? #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@ShitMySommSays @KeeperColl We wear small pieces of milled rice. You have to look hard to find them. #SommChat

@1337wine (Mark V. Fusco, CSW): sorry i’m late to the party #SommChat

@WineTheory (Justin Harriman): If you’re not in on #SommChat you need to be. @lisamattsonwine @YNchick @DanAndelman @BridgetEileen @VinMasi @VinoCC @VinoSociety

@BlissAdventure (Michael Housewright): Sake names remind me of fireworks. Would you mind explaining how to determine quality level of Sake’ from the label? #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@blissadventure @KeeperColl Look for Junmai, Ginjo, or DaiGingo on the label. Also “tokobetsu” which means special sake. #SommChat

@RichardPF (Richard Auffrey): @uchikoaustin Have you read Gauntner’s “Sake’s Hidden Stories”? @keepercoll #SommChat #Sake

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@RichardPF @keepercoll Parts of it were included in our coursework. En route from Amazon. #SommChat

@ShitMySommSays (Shit My Sommelier Says): @uchikoaustin Budweiser is made with up to 30% rice. We call is Budricer. #Sake #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@ShitMySommSays @KeeperColl Some table sake is called Triple Sake–three times the alcohol added to it. Bud-rice-ier. #SommChat

@VinoCaPisco (Countess Rose Perry): @uchikoaustin I know pretty much 0.0 about sake. What food other than sushi/sashimi could I pair sake with? cc @keepercoll #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@VinoCaPisco @keepercoll Pair good food with good sake. Some examples: Proscuitto and melon pairs beautifully with… #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@VinoCaPisco @keepercoll ..fruity aromatic sake. Tart or acidic food is mellowed and balanced by sweet sake. #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@VinoCaPisco @keepercoll Salty dishes (dare I say caviar) are fabulous with dry sake. Last Sunday I had Texas barbecue… #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@VinoCaPisco @keepercoll …with a rich, sweet sake from Fukuoka. If it’s good food, there’s a sake out there for it. #SommChat

@BlissAdventure (Michael Housewright): @uchikoaustin @blissadventure @KeeperColl Top 3 Sakes in each category? In 140 characters? #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@blissadventure @keepercoll Junmai: anything from Nanbu BiJin. Junmai Gingo: Bride of the Fox. Junmai DaiGingo: Dassai rocks. #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Q. @UchikoAustin For #Sake Certification, what areas/categories are you tested on? #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .keepercoll We’re tested on sake grades, milling rates, labeling, rice types, stages of sake production, and sake terminology. #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Q @UchikoAustin We can learn a lot abt a #wine just by smelling. Is it the same for #sake? Should we always smell before we taste? #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@keepercoll Yes, definitely. Like wine, you can learn much about sake by smelling, particularly about what was used to make it. #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@keepercoll And when it comes to sake, rice gives flavor; yeast gives aroma. Each yeast produces different esters… #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@keepercoll …and alcohols, contributing directly to fragrance. #SommChat

@RichardPF (Richard Auffrey): @uchikoaustin What would you like to learn about sake that you don’t already know? @keepercoll #SommChat #Sake

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@RichardPF @keepercoll I want to know exactly what it smells like inside a brewery in Japan! #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Q. @UchikoAustin Can people find #sake at the same retail stores where #wine is sold? #WineWednesday #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@keepercoll Oftentimes, yes, but it can be hard to get a good selection and sound recommendations from huge retailers… #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@keepercoll My best experiences buying sake are with smaller wine and sake merchants or buying online. Keep in mind… #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@keepercoll Making great sake is painstaking and labor intensive, so, as a general rule, better sakes tend to be more expensive. #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@keepercoll Also, sake is aged at the brewery and should be purchased and consumed while it’s relatively young. #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@keepercoll Be sure to take a look at the date on the sake bottle. Sake brews from fall to spring each year… #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@keepercoll so right now sake with a 2010 or 2011 date is best. #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Great tip! RT @uchikoaustin: .@keepercoll so right now #sake with a 2010 or 2011 date is best. #SommChat

@RichardPF (Richard Auffrey): @uchikoaustin Have you been to any sake breweries in the US? @keepercoll #SommChat #sake

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@RichardPF @keepercoll I’ve toured Gekkigan and Sho Chiku Bai in Northern California. Great tours! #SommChat

@VinoCaPisco (Countess Rose Perry): @uchikoaustin I’ve been a certified sommelier since ’02 & still learn new things about wine regularly. Give us 3 #sake facts to RT #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@VinoCaPisco @KeeperColl If you remember one word about sake, let it be “GINJO”. #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@VinoCaPisco @KeeperColl Exceptions abound in the sake world. There’s a world of variety within each sake region. #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .VinoCaPisco @KeeperColl Sake is not just for old Japanese men. Everyone can and should enjoy it! #SommChat

@YNchick (Jaclyn Stuart CS): @uchikoaustin What is the shelf-life for most sake? I’ve heard various different numbers. #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@YNchick @KeeperColl Shelf life varies widely by sake type and processing. As a general rule, drink within one year and… #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@YNchick @KeeperColl and no more than one week after opening… and refrigerate, refrigerate, refrigerate! #SommChat

@demilove (Douglas Trapasso): Have fun, all of you attending @TEXSOM this weekend! Maybe in 2012, I’ll join you. Please keep me updated about all the events! #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Time to wrap up! If u still have #sake Qs for @UchikoAustin, ask them NOW! We’ll announce today’s $50 Uchiko GC winner shortly #SommChat

@1337wine (Mark V. Fusco, CSW): time for me to bounce all. got some errands to run. if you’re gonna be at#TexSom hit me up! #SommChat

@JuneRodil (JuneRodil): .@uchikoaustin Michael, congrats on sake cert. Great answers to great questions! What’s your fave sake of the moment? #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@JuneRodil @KeeperColl Dassa Junmai Daiginjo milled to 50% (Yamaguchi). It’s perfect. #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@JuneRodil @KeeperColl Thanks June! And thanks for engendering sake passion in me in the first place… #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): And the winner of the $50 gift certificate to @UchikoAustin is… @kelljokrause! Congrats! #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Thanks to everyone for joining us for #SommChat! I hope you learned something about #sake and @UchikoAustin!

@kelljokrause (Kelly Krause): @keepercoll @UchikoAustin HUGE SMILE ON MY FACE RIGHT NOW!!! Thank you so much! Big thanks Michael for sharing your #sake insight! #SommChat

@UchikoAustin (Uchiko Austin): .@kelljokrause @keepercoll Big smile here, too. This was great fun and a real honor. Drink sake! #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Please join me in thanking Michael Carlson @UchikoAustin for an awesome job sharing his #sake expertise! #SommChat

@MattMcGinnis (Matt McGinnis): Thanks @uchikoaustin and @keepercoll for an incredibly informative #SommChat about sake. Can’t wait to taste more.

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): If you’re a #food & #wine lover, dont forget to get tix for our #CUF2011Culinary Competition, kicking off on Aug. 21 in Dallas! #SommChat

@keepercoll (Keeper Collection): Join us next Wed 8/17 11 AM CST for another #SommChat w/ Craig Collins @ccollinsMS, newly appointed Master #Sommelier!