The Making of

The journey of creation: Assemblage 3

This is the second successive Assemblage I have formulated while in France, owing to the limits of the current global situation. The project of IWA 5 means continual experimentation, and I keep progressing as I walk. Having learned so much from Assemblages 1 and 2, I keep playing here along a very fine and fragile line of balance. This paradox of presence and weightlessness has been my joy to create.

Richard Geoffroy, IWA Founder-Maker


Each Assemblage of IWA 5 keeps true to Sake, yet departs from convention in many aspects.

First and foremost, the global expression of classical Sake is shifted to a greater equilibrium between nose and palate. Palatability is key, actual IWA 5’s main asset. A major emphasis is put on the finish. The aftertaste lingers and remains the memory of the Sake, satisfying, refined and smooth: a unique combination of vibrant aromatics, of the sweet, the bitter, the sour, the spicy and the umami.


Intensity is the salient character, giving an edge to a racy and mouthwatering conclusion

The nose
Intense, pure, highly defined. The first notes are bright ones, intriguingly vegetal, more floral than fruity. The sake calls for a moment of respiration to grow more complex through darker lower tones. White pepper - IWA’s aromatic signature - is clearly present.

The palate
One is instantly struck by the impression of superlative balance and coherence. The weightlessness of the sake unfolds with great tonicity. All sensations seamlessly converge, drawn to a racy, tactile, intense, mouthwatering finish.

Sensory Profile Wheel
Sensory Profile
Sensory Profile Wheel

IWA 5’s unique character: embracing diverse cultures & cuisines

Richard Geoffroy

“The energy which goes into the making of IWA 5 is mirrored in its drinking. I encourage the followers and lovers of IWA to take an element of risk in experimenting as much as I do.”

Richard Geoffroy, IWA Founder-Maker

Its unique character confers IWA 5 with a latitude to embrace very diverse cultures and their cuisines.

IWA 5 can respond to various drinking moments at different temperature points in different glassware.

Sake Glasses


Lower temperatures. Reishu. 冷酒

From 1-2°C and above
Definitely tightens the Sake up. Starting from 1°/2° and above is a subtle play of textures, with an element of gentle soft fruitiness – stone fruit, cherry.

Higher temperatures. Kanzake. 燗酒

35-37°C Hitohadakan 人肌燗
Sensuous. Immaterial and fluffy, gets back together through the aftertaste. Candied almonds.

45°C Jokan 上燗
Amazingly soft. The viscosity and silky texture are fusional. Mint, aniseed, camphor.

55°C Tobikirikan 飛び切り燗
A glorified character of rice. Rounded, thicker and grainy. White pepper.

Sake Glasses


Glass shapes References
  • Lehmann Signature n°4 Arnaud Lallement Ultraleggero
  • John Jenkins Starr White Burgundy
  • Riedel Superleggero Daiginjo
  • Riedel Veritas New World Pinot Noir
  • IWA Marc Newson


IWA 5 has an intriguing capacity to pair with a great array of foods: the Sake has sort of a flexibility to invariably adjust itself right to the level of the food, sensibly, from the delicate to the robust, from light to dark flavors. IWA 5 can pair with successive dishes throughout one single meal.

Meal with Sake

A span of opposing & complementary characters

The Sake components

1. Rice varieties — 2. Origins
  • Yamada Nishiki from Hyogo and Toyama Prefectures – brings streamlined finesse.
  • Omachi from Okayama – brings opulence and texture.
  • Gohyakumangoku from Toyama Prefecture – seals the Assemblage.

3. Yeast Strains

Five different yeast strains, including experimental ones. The selection of yeast strains is based on their complimentary individual natures: high and low tone aromas, greener aromas, complexity, umami, sourness, viscosity or texture.

4. Moto

Predominantly traditional Kimoto – bringing extra depth.

5. Reserve Sakes

Making the Assemblage better balanced, richer and more complex.


No alcohol added. Rice polishing rate – Seimaibuai – is 35% as all individual components are 35%.


The entire production has been pasteurized.