Aspergillus Oryzae

I remember having a conversation with a mate of mine about koji

And he asked me why I found mould so exciting

He was of the opinion that if it grew in damp attics

Then it had no business being around food and drink

After swallowing the urge to punch the ignorance out of him

I realised that he had a valid point

How do you make mould sound exciting?

Imagine finding a secret ingredient that had existed for centuries

But you were one of only a handful of people who knew what it was

An ingredient so versatile that it changed the profile of anything it was added to

Magic at your fingertips

White, black and yellow gold

The crown jewel in the craftsmanship of nihonshu

The key to unlocking a smooth shochu

The kick that makes a potent awamori

When koji-kin rains

It carries the hopes and dreams of tojis

Breaking their backs for the act of creation

I explained all of this to my mate

And he said I need to get out more

So, we went for Japanese food

And he tried sake for the first time

I’d call that a victory

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