Wednesday, March 16, 2011

March 28th Event To Help Our Beer Brothers (And Sisters) In Japan!

Hitachino lives on...but needs your help.

Among the many suffering through the aftermath of the tsunami in Japan are several artisanal sake and beer makers that have been destroyed. We have received a letter from Mr. Kiuchi of Hitachino (he is safe), which we've included below. We're planning a benefit for March 28th at Brooklyn Brewery, and we'll be helped by Jon Bloostein of Heartland Brewery and the hosts of Beer Sessions Radio. More info coming soon...

Hi Jimmy,

This is Toshiyuki from Kiuchi Brewery. Thank you for the kind offer to help us. It was terrible experience for us, and so many people are missing.

Everyone in Japan is so discouraged by this big earthquake. Tokyo is far from the most damaged area, but nobody is visiting restaurants, only staying in their homes. Also, an oil refinery, which is located near sea, was damaged by the big tsunami wave, and a lot of cars are waiting at the gasoline station for fuel.

At our brewery, many of the building roofs and some brewing equipment was damaged. Almost 500 bottles were broken, but everyone is safe! Nearby the brewery there are so many holes and cracks on the road. When I visited the sea area (20 min. by car), I was so surprised: I could not understand why there were so many ships on the hill! Sadly, 19 people are missing in this area.

Now we have almost finished repairing our brewing equipment and are ready to start brewing again, but the electrical power is limited. We are bottling waiter to supply everyone, and the staff of our restaurant is cooking free food for people who have lost their homes.

I estimate our damage will be almost US$125,000, and this is very small compared with other breweries in the sea area.One brewery located in the Miyagi area that is owned by my relative was washed away; all the buildings are gone, and some staff are missing.

I think there are 10 sake breweries and five beer breweries that were seriously damaged. If you are planning to do charity party, how about donating to some of the more damaged breweries? Of course we are so honored your offer to help!!

Thank you so much and I will RETURN to NYC to taste your wonderful beers!!!

Toshiyuki Kiuchi