In 2018 we welcomed our new Toji/Master Brewer, Takumi Kuwabara. With extensive experience in U.S. sake brewing, Takumi specializes in premium, high-end sake including Ginjo and Daiginjo styles. Takumi takes the place of SakéOne’s former brewmaster, Greg Lorenz, a 2017 James Beard Award semifinalist, who was with SakéOne since 2002. Takumi comes to SakéOne with more than 26 years of sake brewing experience in both Japan and the U.S. Most recently, Takumi worked as the production area manager for Takara Sake USA where he built a reputation as one of the only Daiginjo sake makers outside of Japan. After refining his craft and spending more than 13 years with the Yaegaki Shuzo Corporation in Japan, Takumi joined Yaegaki’s U.S. branch in 2004 as a production manager. His move to SakéOne is motivated by his desire to focus his brewing on exclusively high-end, premium sake as well as the favorable location in Forest Grove, OR., where SakéOne has been producing sake for more than two decades. Takumi grew up in the rural countryside of Japan and chose to relocate his family to Portland, as he felt it reflected the values of his childhood home.