NEW YORK — New York City’s first sake brewery has opened in Brooklyn, using American-grown rice and New York water to make the distinctive Japanese rice wine.

Brandon Doughan says he used to work as a biochemist developing medication for cancer and heart disease, but is now focused on his new career of brewing sake. WABC-TV reports he began the venture with business partner Brian Polen, who he met in Japan five years ago at a mutual friend’s wedding.

The two traveled the country before returning to the U.S. to open their own sake brewery, Brooklyn Kura.

The brewery offers eight varieties of sake, but it has not branched into distribution. Brooklyn Kura’s tap room is open weekends for visitors.

Information from: WABC-TV,