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ROKA 15 – exclusive Junmai Daiginjo for ROKA’s 15th Anniversary

April 26, 2019

5 bottles of ROKA 15 sake


London’s renowned contemporary Japanese robatayaki restaurant, ROKA, celebrates its fifteenth anniversary in the summer of 2019. To mark this auspicious occasion the group approached master sake brewers and long-time ROKA collaborators, Tatenokawa, asking them to craft a bespoke sake especially suited to ROKA’s signature robata dishes. ROKA 15 was born.

The idea of creating a sake for ROKA’s 15th anniversary was first visited in late 2017. Laura Blanchett, ROKA’s Head Sommelier, spoke with our Director, Oliver Hilton-Johnson, and asked about the possibility of doing a bespoke sake to make the occasion. The key was creating a sake prestigious enough to mark the occasion coupled with a flavour profile suited to ROKA’s distinctive food.

Oliver pitched the idea of using rice ultra-polished to 15%. Rice is almost always polished before it is used to make sake, the degree of polishing determines the style and category of sake. Junmai daiginjo has a minimum polishing of 50% (that’s 50% of the rice remaining after polishing) and polishing beyond 35% is quite rare so to plan for a 15% polish was ambitious! Especially since, as a general rule, the more you polish rice, the more delicate and lighter in profile the resultant sake.  Super-light sake would not be the best pairing for ROKA’s food.

Tatenokawa sake brewery logoThis was the challenge presented to Tatenokawa in early 2018. Tatenokawa have experience in ultra-polishing, they make sakes polished to 18%, 8% and even (a world first) 1%. But the trick was to ensure the sake worked with the food. They made a plan, tested and ROKA 15 was born.

ROKA 15 is elegant and silky-textured with sumptuous fruit aromas and flavours of pineapple, melon, watermelon and subtle stoned fruits like apricot and prune. It is medium-bodied, with delicately balanced acidity, a subtle & silky delivery and a clean finish. Crucially it is the perfect accompaniment to ROKA’s signature robata dishes. A limited edition of 1000 bottles only.


ROKA 15 is made with 100% organic, locally grown Dewasansan rice. Polishing took 40 days!

Roka 15 Launch Event on 27th March