Japan: Unique Technology Aging Wine Under the Sea

In an innovative initiative, a Tokyo-based company is pioneering the application of technology to age wine under the sea off the coast of Amami-Oshima Island in Kagoshima Prefecture, southwestern Japan, with hopes of reviving the local economy.

Wine Under the Sea

The renowned method of underwater aging is recognized globally for its favorable conditions, including submerged temperature, relative coolness, high pressure, and minimal light.

However, this process is “rarely implemented in Japan,” according to Yui Moritani, the 38-year-old President of the company spearheading this creative project.

As reported by The Mainichi, approximately 500 bottles of European wine in stainless steel cages were lowered to the seabed at a depth of around 20 meters off the coast of Setouchi town in the southern part of the island at the end of January 2024.

A diver who submerged the wine bottles noted that the water in the area is warmer than the usual temperature for wine aging, measuring 21 degrees Celsius on January 30, which could accelerate the aging process. However, the most significant challenge remains whether the wine can withstand the warm summer water.

Challenge and Prospects: The Fusion of Art and Science

While most bottles will be submerged for up to 6 months and expected to serve customers in July, some will undergo a more extended aging process to determine the optimal flavor. This opens up opportunities for in-depth research into how the marine environment influences the development and quality of wine.

Contribution to Marine Environmental Conservation

The underwater wine aging project not only brings economic value but also benefits the marine environment. The underwater wine cellar functions as an artificial coral reef, attracting fish and creating a coral barrier that absorbs CO2, contributing to marine environmental protection.

Special Interaction with Consumers

Furthermore, the company plans to provide underwater aging services for wine bottles that customers bring, adding a unique and interactive element between consumers and the product.

This project is not only an innovative step in the Japanese wine industry but also a significant contribution to marine environmental conservation, creating an exceptional experience for wine enthusiasts worldwide.

Note: This article utilizes information, images from The Mainichi and Kyodo.


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