Trevor Wight is the marketing and sales manager at Texas Sake Company, and his email signature—which is Kanpai, y’all!—gives a good indication of where sake is headed stateside. At Texas Sake Company, the beverage has Japanese origins but a distinctly American profile. “We’re run by Americans,” Wight says, “we use American ingredients, and [we’re] definitely paying homage to American traditions—but with a beverage that’s not uniquely American.”
The Austin-based operation is part of a small, new wave of American craft sake producers in the U.S. that’s spread from New York and Maine to Colorado and the Lone Star State. Relying on marketing efforts, insight from the craft beer segment, and a commitment to quality ingredients, these small producers are intent on making American craft sake a viable, full-fledged segment.
And there’s evidence that the stars are starting to align for the new category…