America's Sakémaster, Greg Lorenz
Take a boy from Arizona to Australia, teach him to play the didgeridoo and turn him on to microbiology. "I'm a lab geek and come at it from the life-form perspective." Greg didn't grow up wanting to be a saké brewer. His life took him on a long voyage through growing various microorganisms for food products. From blue-green algae to tiny fish, Greg has been the human at the other end of the microscope. The human with a huge smile. His move to brewing saké came one day when a former co-worker called and asked if he'd be interested in giving it a try. So, he put on his best suit (he'd tell you it was his only suit and might still be) and landed the job. Nearly ten years later Greg is the old man of Americans commercially brewing saké (all of about 4 people, maybe) but he'll be the first one to tell you he's a newbie, a beginner. Greg's humble approach and lab geek focus has brought him the continued support of our original brewing partners Momokawa Brewing Japan and new support from the two master brewers of Yoshinogawa. In the fall of 2010 the Yoshinogawa brewers spent three weeks in Greg's brewery working with him to enhance his processes from rice polish to pressing. The results were tasted with great enthusiasm four months later and the evolution, if not revolution, in Oregon craft saké continues to this day.