There are hundreds of shrines in Kyoto, each devoted to different deities. People come from all over to petition these divinities to aid in their personal cause. This might be someone praying to ease the suffering of an ailing loved-one, a woman hoping to get pregnant, a businessman desiring financial rewards, or a student wishing for academic success.
Matsunoo Taisha, one of Kyoto's oldest shrines, is the favorite of sake brewers. The reason for this is water. The local spring water, considered some of the best in Japan, is believed to be blessed. So the brewers come offering prayers and a large barrel of sake to Oyamakui-no-kami (the mountain deity responsible for the water that flows from Mount Matsuo) hoping their next batch of sake will be blessed.
This shrine is also where my friends filmmaker Clive Williams and musician Aki Kasuga were married. So it is indeed an auspicious location.