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American Rice & Mountain Water


Born in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains, Ben’s American Sake has crafted a fresh new take on an ancient beverage: Sake!  Our sake is unabashedly American.  We aim to remove any pretension from the experience of serving and drinking this refined spirit.  Our sake is easy to approach, with new fruit infusions, light carbonation, and packaged in friendly, familiar bottles and cans. Nothing could be more American than Ben’s!

Sake is a trending sector of the beverage market in the US. We are one of the first American craft producers of Sake and other domestic brewers are now entering the market. That said, drinking sake outside of sushi restaurants in the US is unusual, particularly in a casual beer/sake garden setting like Ben's. So why did we try sake? A buzz from sake is light and euphoric, it gives you energy—and because it's naturally gluten free, starting with pure milled rice, it’s hangover free too! In addition, as our nation grows more and more health conscious, having a gluten-free alcoholic option addresses a real need American’s are concerned about.  No hangovers. Gluten free. Great fresh taste. Try it!



Rice

 Sake Rice is milled to a minimum of 70%. This means that 30% of the outside of the grain has been removed. We brew “Junmai Gingjo” which in Japan means that the rice has been milled to 60%. Helping create a lighter and cleaner final product. Sake rice is milled down to remove fats and proteins that are found in the outer edges of the grain, which leaves behind the pure starchy center of the grain. In contrast, traditional white table rice has only been milled to 90%, just removing the outer brown layers.

Sake Rice is milled to a minimum of 70%. This means that 30% of the outside of the grain has been removed. We brew “Junmai Gingjo” which in Japan means that the rice has been milled to 60%. Helping create a lighter and cleaner final product. Sake rice is milled down to remove fats and proteins that are found in the outer edges of the grain, which leaves behind the pure starchy center of the grain. In contrast, traditional white table rice has only been milled to 90%, just removing the outer brown layers.

Koji

 Koji, “Aspergillus Oryzae,” is a mold that has been cultivated for thousands of years for use in brewing sake, soy sauce, and other culinary purposes. It is the heart of the sake brewing process, converting the starch in the rice to sugars, which are then fermented. It’s a two-step process that the Koji sets into play. At Ben’s, we grow our own koji, in-house, carefully tending it until it’s ready for its vital role. In addition to converting starch to sugar, koji also lends umami and various fruity, floral and nutty flavor and aroma compounds to the final product.

Koji, “Aspergillus Oryzae,” is a mold that has been cultivated for thousands of years for use in brewing sake, soy sauce, and other culinary purposes. It is the heart of the sake brewing process, converting the starch in the rice to sugars, which are then fermented. It’s a two-step process that the Koji sets into play. At Ben’s, we grow our own koji, in-house, carefully tending it until it’s ready for its vital role. In addition to converting starch to sugar, koji also lends umami and various fruity, floral and nutty flavor and aroma compounds to the final product.

Sake is a hybrid alcoholic beverage that drinks like a wine, but the brewing process is similar to beer. Our batches are brewed with only four ingredients: 60% milled sake rice, house grown koji, sake yeast, and water. We infuse many of our sakes with fruits, spices and herbs to create a one of a kind beverage for a unique experience. In a city that prides itself on being “Beer City USA,” we bring sake to the table with equal pride. Located in the South Slope neighborhood of Asheville, Ben’s American Sake offers a fresh alternative to the many amazing beers coming out of the breweries here.

Yeast

 Sake yeast is responsible for fermenting the sugars the koji has produced and creates alcohol and carbon dioxide. Sake yeast likes to ferment at cooler temperatures and can take up to eight weeks to completely finish, reaching alcohol contents close to 20%.

Sake yeast is responsible for fermenting the sugars the koji has produced and creates alcohol and carbon dioxide. Sake yeast likes to ferment at cooler temperatures and can take up to eight weeks to completely finish, reaching alcohol contents close to 20%.

Mountain Water

  Asheville is in the Blue Ridge region of the Appalachian Mountains. While we experience lots of sunshine, we also get lots of mountain rain. This watershed is plentiful and of very high quality making it ideal for a water-dependent brewing process.

Asheville is in the Blue Ridge region of the Appalachian Mountains. While we experience lots of sunshine, we also get lots of mountain rain. This watershed is plentiful and of very high quality making it ideal for a water-dependent brewing process.

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Ben’s Sake

All of our Sakes are served fresh, unpasteurized (Namazake or “nama sake”) and chilled. This creates a truly unique experience, as almost all sake sold in America have been pasteurized and shipped from Japan. We do serve some traditional styles such as genshu, no water added, and nigori, unfiltered, but our most popular sakes are fruit infused, the best seller being Ben's Lemon Ginger.

  • Heavy - 15.5%

    Our traditional Junmai Ginjo sake, this has been filtered then diluted down to 15.5% ABV. Full body, semi-sweet with fruity/ floral notes.

  • Natural - 15%

    Our traditional “Nigori”, means unfiltered. Notes of cream, vanilla and coconut. Full body and mouthfeel.

  • Lemon Ginger - 13%

    Lemon juice with freshly juiced ginger .

  • Pineapple Jalapeno - 13%

    Jalapeno on the nose, balanced with a sweet acidity from the pineapple.

  • Blueberry Lime - 14%

    Blueberries supported with a tartness from the Lime juice.

  • Apple Spice - 12%

    Nothing is more American than Apple Pie. We take inspiration from that and combine mulling spices with cider and our Heavy sake to create a wonderful aroma and flavor profile that will make you happy the fall colors have arrived. We offer this served warm to help fight off the winter chill.

  • Horchata - 14%

    This plant based milk beverage spans three continents, usually consisting of rice or almond milk, spiced with vanilla and cinnamon. We use our Natural nigori based and create a full bodied, sweet beverage to help celebrate the holidays.

Craft Sodas

We also make our own non-alcoholic sodas & teas.

  • Power Tonic Kombucha:

    A yerba maté based kombucha optimized for low acetic acid content is blended with gunpowder green tea, ginger, turmeric, pomegranate, hibiscus, peppermint, and lemon juice. This refreshingly delicious lightly sweet beverage is loaded with nutrients, probiotics, caffeine, and flavor.

  • Blueberry Ginger Citrus Maté:

    Fresh brewed yerba maté is blended with blueberry puree, ginger root, lemon juice, lime juice, and a pinch of sugar. This nutrient and caffeine laden beverage has an aroma and taste well balanced between fruit, citrus, and herbal earthiness.

  • Prickly Pear Grapefruit Soda:

    Prickly Pear and grapefruit are combined with lemon juice, a pinch of salt, and a dash of sugar in this bewitching fruit soda.

  • Cold Brew Coffee:

    Brewed for 48 hours this coffee packs a large dose of caffeine in a smooth and slightly nutty beverage that contains a small amount of sugar.