Festivals & Events
Niigata Sake Fair 新潟淡麗 にいがた酒の陣
A sake festival at Japan's rice capital, plus stage performances and workshops
Niigata Prefecture has always been the rice capital of Japan, but the refined, light and dry taste of Niigata sake did not stand out until recently. First held in 2004 as the 50th anniversary of Niigata Sake Brewers Association, the early spring Niigata Sake Fair has transformed into an enormous annual extravaganza that attracts over 100,000 sake lovers from Japan and overseas.
- Tasting over 500 kinds of sake from over 80 Niigata-based brewers
- Listening in on the many sake-related lectures and workshops
How to Get There
Only a couple of hours north of Tokyo, the Niigata Sake Fair is accessible by public transportation and by car.
By train, take the Joetsu Shinkansen to Niigata Station and then hop on a bus for Sadokisen. Get off at Toki Messe, the event venue.
By car, exit the Hokuriku Expressway at the Niigata-nishi interchange. Toki Messe is about 20 minutes away.
Over 80 breweries and countless more sake varieties
The festival runs for two days every March. It features more than 500 kinds of sake from around 80 participating brewers from the prefecture. Taste sake of various flavors and textures, including milky, fruity, sparkling or otherwise.
Fun performances while enjoying sake
Stage performances including traditional dances and fashion shows accompany the sake action throughout the day. Once you're hungry, enjoy some local Niigata specialties that pair well with sake.
Take in a seminar and learn about sake
If you'd like to learn more about sake, there are seminars held at a special venue. Topics covered include sake-food pairings, special sake rice, and sake vessels.
The latest information may differ, so please check the official website
* The information on this page may be subject to change due to COVID-19.