Kobe, particularly the Nada District, has long been a sake-brewing center of Japan, with the Hakutsuru brewery as a dominant presence. The Hakutsuru Sake Brewery Museum, operated by the Hakutsuru company, teaches visitors just about everything there is to know about sake, including the 2,000-year-plus history of the beverage, traditional sake-making methods, the modern brewing process and tasting hints for enjoying sake.
The museum occupies two floors of a former Hakutsuru brewery and features several live-size dioramas showing the steps in the traditional brewing process. At the end of a free self-guided tour (brochures are available in English), guests enjoy free samples of the sake from the new Hakutsuru brewery across the street in the museum shop.
The Hakutsuru Sake Brewery Museum is located a 5-minute walk from Hanshin Sumiyoshi Station and a 15-minute walk from JR Sumiyoshi Station. The last entry is at 4pm.