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Oct 27, 2008 12:47 AM

Learn Me About Sake

Over the weekend I had a revelatory Sake at a cliche Teppanyaki place. Smooth entry, very full bodied, good balance between rice flavor & pinapple-y notes & none of the common "rubbing alcohol" common in other Sake's I've had... I could sip it all night.

Excited by my find... I did some research and found out its made in Berkeley... retails for $5 a bottle, described by a Sake blogger as nothing special, and by its producer as "the best selling Sake in the United States" but also "pure snow melt from the Sierra Nevada Mountains and superior rice from the fertile Sacramento Valley. To that, they applied traditional sake-making craft and modern technology to produce a Sake worthy of the Takara mark."

When I observe the approach taken in the States to Mexican Cuisine or Tequila.. I am intimately familiar with the ease in which we can fall for dumbed down, "easier" renditions of foreign foods & drinks (anybody remember when Wine Coolers far outweighed Real Wine in the country's wine consumption statistics?)

So while I plan to continue to enjoy Takara's Sho Chiku Bai.. please educate me on what I need to understand before I can appreciate Sake in greater depth... and not the "Wine Cooler" version of Sake


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  1. Sake is actually brewed like beer, so is classified as such.

    There's a lot to go into with sake- which is actually called "Nihon-shu". Have you had a chance to read John Gaunter's website--> John is regarded as the world's leading non-Japanese sake authority and his site is the best online resource in English.

    Also, if you're interested in the Japanese tequila analog, you may also want to look into shochu/ awamori Japan's indigenous distilled spirit.

    1. EN, welcome to a wonderful dimension of pleasure - a masu in a saucer overflowing with premium sake. While I lived in Denver for 8 years, my japanese friends who own one of the top 2 sushi restaurants, supplied me with magnums of premium saki so delicious I would turn down the music and lighting at home to enjoy the sake without sensory distractions.
      Go discover, and enjoy!

      1. Referring to Ripple? That's what led to my wine addiction....
        Are you drinking Sake warm? I think that has bugged me.

        1. Que onda Compadre !

          I find you in all the interesting places of the chow !
          I love Sake I can't say I'm very knowledgeble about it but I know that Hakaisan is one of my favorites , I'm triyng to remember the name of a bottle offered to me by Chef Ota at Sushi Ota in San Diego that was like angels pissing in my tongue ! I wil post it . Sake and ceviche works wonders , oysters and habanero..