In our first instalment in our series about Sake – the Japanese fermented alcoholic beverage made from rice – we take a look at common misconceptions….Kanpai!
You’ve probably come across it before, on the menu of a Japanese or Japanese-adjacent restaurant, presented as a binary choice between hot or cold.
It stared back at you from the page, a confusing foreign four-letter word. Isn’t it a spirit, served in those tiny cups? Don’t you only have it with Japanese food? And how do you drink it anyway?
Much of the Sake you find on restaurant menus is anonymous. No maker, no label, nothing to indicate who made it or what it’s supposed to be like. Unknown and strangely forgettable.
Hot, or cold. House red, house white.
Imagine if house red, house white was all one knew about wine?
Think about how much there would be to discover. The journey they could go on.
Welcome to Sake.
It’s not a spirit. It’s great in a wine glass. It goes with almost everything. Really.
Once you get past the faceless, nameless stuff that you first encounter, you’ll find that Sake comes from small, high-quality breweries, many handed down through one family for generations, over hundreds of years. These brewers are firmly rooted in Japanese tradition, but also not afraid of experimenting. Sake runs the gamut from fresh, aromatic and delicate to rich, complex and full of the elusive savouriness of umami.
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