Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Fudo Myoo Ginjo Nigori Genshu with Muramasa: The Demon Blade

I've been wanting to do a post on Muramasa: The Demon Blade for some time now. Due to laziness and an irrational urge to find an absolutely perfect pairing, I'm only just now getting around to it. Muramasa is an amazing 2D side-scrolling action game set in feudal Japan. It plays more or less like a brawler, with a little extra sophistication coming in with the enormous array of different swords that one can forge throughout the game. The game follows a confusing plot concerning a young woman whose body has been inhabited by a demon. I wish I could explain it a little better than that, but I would just be making things up if I tried.

Muramasa's best feature is its stunning graphics. A beautiful blend of anime and more traditional Japanese painting, simply looking at the characters and backgrounds makes this game worthwhile. The music is also wonderful, consisting largely of dramatic drums and flutes. Because the game has such a thoroughly Japanese aesthetic, saké seemed an obvious choice. And sometimes, obvious choices are very good ones.

Since my days of pairing Shichi Hon Yari Junmai with Red Steel 2, I've found a need to practice restraint when spending money on my blog research. I wanted to buy a good saké on a budget, and Fudo Myoo seemed like a good choice. I went with their Nigori, or (relatively) unfiltered, saké, as its cloudiness reminded me of the beautiful snowy fields that one frequently runs through in Muramasa.
Fudo Myoo is one of few saké breweries in the United States. Based in Oregon, they are named after the Buddhist deity that defends wisdom and personifies perseverance. Like revenge, their Ginjo Nigori Genshu is best served cold. It is a strong, unfiltered saké. Cloudy and creamy, it tastes of lichi and vanilla, with a slight mushroomy earthiness. It is sweet, and finishes with a hint of marshmallow.
The fruity character of the saké made it somewhat suitable for a colorful game like Muramasa. However, I felt at times that this particular booze lacked the refinement of the game I paired it with. In the end, it worked out well enough, as its alcoholic warmth bolstered my spirit and allowed me to slaughter wave after wave of ninja and samurai. As I downed the last of my saké, I found myself actually fighting Fudo Myoo, or at least a giant statue posing as him. Needless to say, at that point I had been instilled with the fiery will to strike down this impostor with great vengeance and furious anger.

Coming Soon: It looks like I might be trading a lot of homebrews for a PS3. Expect more frequent updates. Unless I just get addicted to Red Dead Redemption and play it exclusively for the next 6 months.

P.S. I got 241 stars in Super Mario Galaxy 2 before sending it back. That game is awesome.

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