MGVs Winery opens in Katsunuma
ts Muscat Bailey A is a must-try!
Numerous new wineries have emerged amidst Japan’s wine boom in recent years, but few have earned more attention than MGVs Winery, which opened in Katsunuma last year. It’s the brainchild of Enzan Factory, a semiconductor manufacturer. Forced by international price competition to move production from its Katsunuma plant to Vietnam, the firm decided to transform the plant into a winery. What makes this arrangement unique is that the semiconductor manufacturing technology is evident throughout the winery. From the installation of a clean room to the temperature control on the fermentation tank and the collection of meteorological data from the vineyard, special technologies are being utilized all over.
The winery is owned by Enzan Factory President Hiroshi Matsuzaka, the fourth in a lineage of wine growers dating back to Japan’s Meiji Period. Naturally he adores wine, so when considering ways to diversify his business, he decided to enter the wine arena, which enabled him to form a long-term business plan. He assembled a team including chief brewer Masaichi Sodeyama, formerly of Sapporo Wines Ltd., and vineyard manager Takeshi Maeda, a renowned name in the region.
The winery is currently involved in Koshu and Muscat Bailey A, two of Japan’s best-known grape varieties, and does all of its brewing in each vineyard. This year it released its first Muscat Bailey A wine, with a robust aroma and a supple acidity. Its B153 Muscat Bailey A Shimoiwasaki, Katsunuma-cho 2016 features a charming strawberry fragrance and an excellent balance of acidity and fruit flavors. And its K131 Shimokawakubo, Katsunuma-cho, Koshu 2016 has a notable peach scent that conjures images of summer in Yamanashi.
“I want to make wine that clearly reflects the regional character of Katsunuma, wine that makes you feel the terroir,” says Mr. Matsuzaka. The inclusion of the vineyard’s name in the name of the wine is further evidence of this feeling. Currently production stands at 20,000 bottles, but he hopes to increase it to about 60,000. “Eventually I hope to build a wine brand that’s recognized internationally,” says Mr. Matsuzaka about his expanding dream.
The winery also features a cellar door and a stylish counter for tastings. If you get a chance to visit, you will surely delight in the new discoveries as you compare the vineyards.
(Text: Kimiko Anzai)
601-17 Todoroki Katsunuma-cho, Koshu-shi, Yamanashi