Sake Tengoku’s portfolio of high quality, small production sake producers have never been available in the U.S.A. Sake Tengoku is a partnership of two industry veterans, acclaimed sushi Chef Ken Tominaga and business manager Julie Bath.
Through our personal visits and contacts in Japan, we have carefully created a portfolio that represents some of the top sake regions in Japan, as well as, a diverse range of styles and price points. These sakes are already making a big impact in many of the top Asian and Western Cuisine restaurants in San Francisco and Northern California, and more recently New York.
Chef and Consulting Partner
Chef Ken Tominaga’s passion and knowledge of food extends into sake, inspiring him to create and consult for Sake Tengoku, an import company of small, artisanal, sake producers never before introduced to the US market.
Ken is in frequent contact with many of these small sake producers throughout Japan. His search for the best sake continues as he travels biannually each year to Japan. Sake Tengoku allows Ken to develop the same type of unique, high quality sake program that rivals his reputation for unique, high quality food. Sake is becoming a very popular part of the food world these days and more and more people are intrigued with sake and learning the details. Just as there are many types of wine and ways to pair it with food, the same goes for sake.
Chef Ken Tominaga divides his time between a new partnership with Michael Mina which includes Pabu Restaurant in San Francisco’s financial district, Pabu Boston Downtown Millenium Tower, Strip Steak Honolulu and soon to open The Street – Ramen Bar Honolulu, and his esteemed Hana Japanese Restaurant, located in Sonoma County’s Rohnert Park.
Tominaga sees his restaurants as a forum in which he can continue to grow and refine his cuisine. “I put my spirit into the dishes I create,” he says about his pursuit of sushi perfection. “I adjust myself to the sushi I make each day – the temperature, the rice, how to slice the fish — because the ingredients I work with will always be a little bit different.”
Ken is known as a true master with an impeccable palate and dedication to everything with which he is involved.
Chef Tominaga is celebrating Hana’s 27 years of business in 2017.
Julie Bath has spent the last thirty years working in many different aspects of the beverage and hospitality industry, from cooking professionally, managing million dollar catering operations to importing wine. She originally met Ken Tominaga at Hana Restaurant and immediately became a fan of his culinary expertise and his knowledge of sake. Julie’s experience in importing wine enabled the two to create Sake Tengoku, a portfolio of high quality, artisan sakes personally selected by Ken.
Besides managing the business end of Sake Tengoku, Julie visits Japan on a regular basis with Ken, personally visiting their partner breweries throughout the country.
Key to the success of Sake Tengoku, Julie carefully develops the appropriate distribution partners in the USA.
Julie passed her Sake Professional Course in 2014 and her WSET Level 3 Sake Course in 2015 and is actively involved in educational trainings for accounts and distributors throughout the US.