A new career for World Cup footballer Hidetoshi Nakata

So, Nakata turned passion into ambition. In 2013 he launched “N,” a high-end sake that retails for $1,000 a bottle. Next, he helped develop a sake fridge to make it easier for restaurants and sake enthusiasts to enjoy the beverage at optimum temperatures.

“So many people think (sake) is the same as wine, or that room temperature is fine,” Nakata says. “But actually, you need to keep it at minus (five) degrees. Because nobody tells you this type of information, there’s no such product like a wine cellar.”

A few years ago, Nakata launched Sakenomy, an application that translates sake labels for users and offers an extensive guide to sake makers, as well as recommendations on pairings for different cuisines.

In the process, he has become a type of cultural ambassador for his country, traveling the globe to showcase the best of Japan.

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