Photo/IllutrationMaster brewer Naohiko Noguchi, center, in Nomi, Ishikawa Prefecture, in 2014 (Asahi Shimbun file photo)

NOTO, Ishikawa Prefecture--An 84-year-old known as “a god of sake brewing” will come out of retirement to live the rest of his life doing what he loves best.

Naohiko Noguchi retired as brewer two years ago, but he will start making and shipping sake at a planned new brewery in Komatsu, Ishikawa Prefecture, in October.

Noguchi has been involved in the brewing industry since he was 16 years old. He said his return to the business is “my last service.”

“I will be satisfied if I can die while creating sake,” he said.

His sake has won 27 gold prizes at the Annual Japan Sake Awards. His products once won the award for 12 consecutive years.

In 2006, the central government designated Noguchi as a skilled craftsman in modern society.

He is renowned for the “yamahai zukuri” method, which requires sophisticated techniques, and his “nojun umakuchi” sake, which boasts a bright yellow color with strong flavor and acidity, has been a favorite among sake lovers across Japan.

Noguchi uses data analysis and other scientific approaches in the fermenting and brewing process.

More than 10 of Noguchi’s disciples have become brewers at companies not only in Ishikawa Prefecture but also in Hyogo, Kyoto, Wakayama and Shiga prefectures.

After he developed gastric cancer in 2012 and was forced to suspend his work from time to time, Noguchi retired as a brewer in 2015.

Although his family remains worried about his health, Noguchi said he has no intention of retiring again.

“I immediately get sick when I do not work,” he said. “Continuing to make sake will be better for my health. I will devote the rest of my life to brewing sake.”