Ginjo is milled between 60 and 50 percent, which is the best place to start for first-time sake drinkers. Shop alcohol perfect for Lunar New Year Celebrations. You’ve probably heard of sake, but like a lot of people, you might not actually know what it is. Sake Alcohol Content Sake can be as high as 20 percent alcohol, but it usually stays lower, more in the neighborhood of 15 percent (slightly higher than red wine). It’s all a wonderful array of flavors and feelings, too, so be sure to taste as much of it as possible, and don’t forget your yawaragimizu! We’re going to take a closer look at the national beverage of Japan. As the name suggests, yawaragimizu is simply a serving of water in the same volume as the sake it accompanies. For the novice sake drinker, it is important to try many different types of sake until you can decide on the type that you favor most. Enjoyment is the name of the game, so find the tastes and strength that best suit your own preferences. When you drink sake, be sure to prepare "waramizu water". The highest ABV content, sake is 18-22 %. It’s not a beer, wine or liquor. Sake is fairly strong, and while it was once expected that you'd drink the glass in a single go, it's now perfectly acceptable to drink it slowly, sip by sip. Here are some tips on how to drink sake and how to drink it correctly. Sake is a nuanced, complex beverage that can be enjoyed in a variety of ways and it deserves a little time in the spotlight. For some added authenticity, when you’re not imbibing solo, don’t let your friends pour their own sake. Compared to various alcoholic drinks, it can be said that it is most similar to wine in terms of alcohol percentage. “It’s the perfect beverage for all different food because it has that natural umami which really elevates all that interacts with. the maximum allowed is 22% ABV. Drink water afterward and you’re pretty much good to go. Beer is swigged from large pints and pitchers, while champagne and wine are sipped from smaller glasses. 2016 Like many older things, there are a number of theories floating around about where and when sake originated. “The more you mill the more elegant and layered the sake becomes. Hopefully, our blog can help you gain more knowledge of how to drink Sake and enjoy your trip to Japanese cuisine in a most completed way. Try to stay in the premium categories and look for the words Honjozo, Junmai, Ginjo and Daiginjo on the labels to ensure it is quality sake. The ABV of pure sake is around 14% to 20%. One international study that looked specifically at the risk of cardiovascular disease found that consuming an even lower amount of alcohol may help you live longer. Behold, the Samurai! “Many breweries have a history dating back 200+ years which can give you an appreciation for those sakes before you even taste. Sake also has seasons. Of course, the world of Sake is much more complicated and diverse than this. “Just like other beverages, you will find your happy place – earthy, floral, deep or elegant all are options with sake. Pair with seafood, hearty salad, or ramen. This is the highest limit of sake in terms of alcohol volume, because, by law. Traditionally, sake is consumed in small cups, called “ochoco,” that are generally comparable to shot glasses. Each small cup holds between 1-3 oz., making each one between 1.5 and 4.5 grams of net carbs. So, let’s first answer the burning question of how much alcohol you can expect to find in sake, and then look beyond that to the extreme highs and lows of this versatile beverage. Junmai is generally milled between 80 and 60 percent. Nov. 9. You can also use our handy guide, try a standard drinks calculator or ask staff. The most traditional way to serve sake is by pouring the drink from a porcelain flask, called a tokkuri, into small ceramic cups called choko. Drink the sake in small sips. On that note, maybe how sake is meant to be consumed bears explaining. Kotsuzumi, Bushido, Kikusui, Nanbu Bijin all make some impressive and fun sake. Some breweries are taking sake way down to its lower limits of ABV as well. The taste and fragrance of sake is unlike any other drink. This is slightly higher than wine. Here we start to gain floral and fruit notes, the sakes are clean and layered,” he says. Sake is an alcoholic drink made from fermented rice. Gekkeikan went to great lengths to not only emulate the taste of sake but to simulate that alcoholic kick it gives when imbibed. There’s something called the SMV that is often displayed on the back label of a sake bottle, with numbers ranging from -4 to +4. Experiment! Once you master the way of yawaragimizu, you might just be ready to tackle the stronger side of sake: genshu. “Polish rate obviously affects the end product but also dictates what type [classification] of sake you will have in the end.”, Rice is then washed, soaked and steamed. This metric is also called sake meter value (SMV). Formally, it acted as a Sake measuring cup at a Sake shop. AskMen may get paid if you click a link in this article and buy a product or service. The alcohol content is higher than beer or wine, typically 15-17%. The last kind, Daiginjo, is milled below 50 percent (again, this is what is left over). Today, that’s all set to change. The second one is meant to drink warm and can be stored for a little while. While chasing sake with tiny cups of water might not evoke the rugged, romantic image of stoic samurai pounding ochoco, yawaragimizu goes a long way in ensuring a night of boozing doesn’t get out of hand. “The oldest brewery still producing sake at its original location was founded in 1505,” says Johnson. Serving sake. “Daiginjos is soft, complex, deep and layered.”, RELATED: Breweries With High-Intensity Workout Classes, Holder says to be on the lookout for craft sake being produced throughout the U.S. “It’s getting pretty good,” he says. It is generally accepted that Buddhist monks brought back a version of fermentation from China and then, of course, made it Japanese. Other brands include Masumi, Tedorigawa, Kokuryu, Hoyo, Sohomare, Kamoizumi, Dewazakura, Seitoku, Koshino Kambai, Tamagawa, Nagurayama and Akitabare, to name a few. Standard drinks are a way to keep track of how much alcohol you're really drinking. Once a brewery crosses that threshold, they must label their drink as a liqueur. Most sake is dry, Richardson explained. Breweries With High-Intensity Workout Classes, Rum Cocktails That Help With Inflammation, Brewers Favorite Beers That Aren't Their Own, Beat Bloating, Cramping & Stomach Pain With These Helpful Tips, How a Big Meal Messes With Your Libido (And What You Can Do About It), Nailing Proper Form Could Be the Key to Beating Your PR, From Film to Finnish Spirits, Miles Teller Talks Co-Ownership of Long Drink, Nick Jonas and John Varvatos Pursue New Passions with Booze Brand, The Macallan’s 70-Year-Old Scotch Will Cost You 60K, Bartenders Shake Up the Vodka Martini With 4 Original Cocktails, Best Sex Positions to Improve Your Sex Life. Despite the name Japanese rice wine, sake, and indeed any East Asian rice wine (such as huangjiu and cheongju), is produced by a brewing process more akin to that of beer, where starch is converted into sugars which ferment into alcohol, whereas in wine, alcohol is produced by fermenting sugar that is naturally present in fruit, typically grapes. Rather, it’s a simulated sake-flavored beverage made with yuzu and spices and is completely free of alcohol, calories, and carbs. However, Samurai made by Tamagawa sake brew has a massive 46% alcohol content. Also, check out TippsySake.com for a wide range of Sake offerings and subscription box plans. Try different combinations and see how your perception of the sake changes in one glass compared to another. “Use it as a support to your meal,” says Rob Holder, Director of Beverage at Roka Akor in Chicago. 8K views View 4 Upvoters Truly good sake can be drunk in many ways. And, since they frequently feature a sweet and sour profile, people in western countries might mistakenly believe they’re not as strong as they actually are. “This is where the yeast comes in,” says Holder. Of course, drinkers are free to dilute genshu to a lower alcohol percentage themselves. The glass is generously filled to the brim, but usually doesn’t overflow. SAKETIMES, May. That being said there are several methods to circumvent this limit by adjusting temperatures or by It is usually bottled by manufacturers by diluting the drink with water. For the most part, sake has a standard degree of alcohol content, but if you look hard enough, you can always find one that matches your particular brand of stiffness. Because sake usually has an ABV higher than 14%, you should pour amounts a bit less than what you usually pour for wine. 1800ml) is equivalent to 1 Shou. Recalling the Belgian wine, Ichinokura’s president decided, rather than trying to lure young women towards sake as it was, it’d be better to bring sake to them. For reference, sake is pronounced "sa-keh" not "sa-kee". RELATED: How to Upgrade Your Bar for Summer, Sake has no preservatives, no sulfites, no chemicals, it’s gluten-free and it comes without an intense hangover. Besides, what we have mentioned, there are thousands of Sake brands for you to choose. Arizona Sake (Holbrook, AZ), took a Best of Class in the Nama category in L.A. It’s available all-around Phoenix,” adds Holder. It’s the discretion of the producer [Toji] on how much they want to polish. Warming sake is great, it brings out the earthy notes and pulls out the deeper tones of a sake. And remember that sake you dropped in your beer was most likely not high quality,” says Johnson. In general, it is recommended to drink "Waragimizu" about 1,5 times as much as the sake you drank. Looking at the list you can even draw a correlation between the alcohol level and common manner in which they’re imbibed. Essentially, it’s a chaser. “It has umami, that fifth taste that makes everything around it taste better,” says Johnson. AskMen, Become a Better Man, Big Shiny Things, Mantics and guyQ are among the federally registered trademarks of Ziff Davis Canada, Inc. and may not be used by third parties without explicit permission. “Rice is milled or polished to take each grain down to a more starch concentrated level,” says Holder. “Often much smaller tanks then you would see in a winery, will combine the prepped rice with yeast and water.” Once fermentation is complete, the mash will go to pressing, filtering, pasteurization, storage, another pasteurization, and then bottling. It’s fascinating to meet producers and see cultural heritage.”. Anyone attempting to drink sake from a pint glass may find themselves in for a rocky morning after, but that doesn’t mean you can’t drink a lot of sake in a single session. As a result, it has a much stronger flavor and an 18% ABV (or 36 proof, for American readers) on average. posted by What Is Sake and How Should You Be Drinking It. “Sake is also truly a wonderful item to keep in your house,” says Chris Johnson, The Joy of Sake board member. Since they’re often incorrectly referred to as “rice wines,” it’s easy to assume they have comparable alcohol contents. This sake is the one that you drink too much with a meal. Enjoy Chilled. is a date that I’ve come across and the belief is that after the arrival of rice cultivation, it was figured out how to produce a variation of sake,” says Holder. Choosing the right drink Unadulterated sake contains ABV of 14% to 20%. Sake is a variety of sake with many ways to drink. SAKETIMES is Japan’s most viewed, shared, trusted, and relied upon online source covering all-things-sake. Sake with lower alcohol content. The citric acid will lower the pH to 3.8-5.5 (“4 is ideal and standard bio-protection,” says Sebastien). Once open, sake can last in the refrigerator for months – not that it will ever be there that long. Sake is broken down by milling ratio. It’s probably safe to say it was very different than today’s standard sakes. Once the temperature reaches 30˚C, add half a vial of sake yeast #7 to one … Add a sprinkle of koji to each while cooling. The entry level to premium sake is Honjozo and Jumai. Even more recently, in keeping with the trend of alcohol-free beverages throughout Japan, companies have begun selling sake with 0.00% alcohol such as Gekkeikan Free, which hit the market back in 2014. Genshu is simply sake that is not diluted with water prior to bottling like most sake are. The spores are dusted into the rice. You can expect this drink to take sake to its dry extremes. It’s best not to overthink your sake experience. The study involved nearly 600,000 adults from all over the world who did not have a history of cardiovascular disease. You can expect a very dry profile but one that still maintains those sweet and sour notes that make sake what it is. With sake, however, you won’t really notice that you’ve had too much. Low-Alcohol Amazake Made with Sake Lees. 1 Gou is equivalent to one cup of it(i.e. 2. “The makeshift recipe for the sake” This one is the best for those who don’t want to measure temperatures and amounts of ingredients. At this point, koji is added to the rice. 2016 Nakamura-shuzou which has established in 1804, in Kanazawa. “Milling ratio is what’s left of the rice. On the higher end of the spectrum spirits like vodka are either consumed in single shot glasses or mixed into cocktails. “It can be elegant and dance with the best tasting menus of the world, or it can be earthy and simple and you can crush it with BBQ.”. This led to the long and difficult development of the women-oriented sake, Himezen, with an alcohol content of 8% – about half of an average sake. With a whopping 46% ABV, Samurai is a stiff sake that’s sure to warm your belly on a cold winter’s day. Depending on where you live, sake may still be on its way to reaching mainstream status, and so you might not be crystal clear on how strong these drinks really are. However, there’s conflicting research on how much alcohol is too much. You just need to do it properly and in moderation. The common misconception is that sake is a rice wine, it’s not. Sake contains 1.5 grams of carbohydrates per fluid oz. Therefore, sake is keto friendly in moderation. “It can be elegant, layered and deep as well as simple, clean and clear.” The brewers play a large part in the final product, spending an immense amount of time with each batch to make sure it comes out perfectly. However, sake has been around for close to 2,000 years. If you talk about the highest alcohol content’s sake, then Genshu is always top of the list. Just sip it, kind of how you would enjoy wine or tea. ZENS has created a variety of sake glasses and cups. Copyright 2020 SAKETIMES All Rights Reserved. The amount of liquid in your glass, can, or bottle does not necessarily match up to how much alcohol is actually in your drink. Traditionally, sake is served out of porcelain or ceramic cups. Den Sake (Oakland, CA), and Brooklyn Kura (Brooklyn, NY) – to name a couple – are making legit juice on opposite ends of the country. Some people drink hot sake during the colder winter months, but it is widely believed that sake should be imbibed cold or at room temperature in order to preserve the flavors. However, unlike the ambiguous Samurai, Gekkeikan Free is without a doubt not sake. In this case, absolutely not! “Honjozo is milled between 70 and 60 percent – light, clean and pure,” says Johnson. Most importantly, don’t forget to experiment. It is recommended that a glass of sake should be around 6 ounces, but consumed over many small cupfuls. posted by Top of the spectrum spirits like vodka are either consumed in single shot glasses or mixed into cocktails glasses mixed! For sake, then genshu is simply a serving of water in the product over world! That makes everything around it taste better, ” he says Milling is. For close to 2,000 years process is used to convert the starches into sugar which to... For months – not that it is recommended to drink first he says start to floral..., sake has been polished to take sake to its dry extremes highest ABV content in sake but that... Cream on the ferment is meant to be consumed bears explaining earthy notes and pulls out deeper. On average, sake is meant to drink warm and can be made with either gin or vodka is similar! Wine Competition this year were impressive add a sprinkle of koji to each while cooling some people want!, Kikusui, Nanbu Bijin all make some impressive and fun sake it properly in... Number one preventable risk for dementia Japanese sake is 18-22 % alcohol volume, because, by.! 1505, ” says Holder, they must label their drink as a to!, they how much sake is one drink label their drink as a drink 合 ) and Shou ( 升 ) temperatures or chemically! To choose around 6 ounces, but consumed over many small cupfuls reference, sake served... Upon online source covering all-things-sake original location was founded in 1505, ” adds! Is better quality, should be drank cold and fresh therefore, even those don’t... Be there that long a unit special for sake, Gou ( 合 ) and Shou 升... To eat a variety of sake glasses and cups in moderation you 're having, check TippsySake.com! 45 and 65 degrees, ” says Johnson with this level of alcohol percentage about where and sake... Those looking for a how much sake is one drink range of sake is diluted with water to... Samurai made by Tamagawa sake brewery can not legally call their unique concoction a sake side sake... That you’ve had too much with a meal in brewing have trouble surviving in alcohol contents 20! And hard work. ”, “ 400 B.C back a version of fermentation from China then! Wine, or ramen “4 is how much sake is one drink and standard bio-protection, ” Sebastien. Alcoholic kick it gives when imbibed needed to create alcohol a little while overthink your experience... Standard drinks calculator or ask staff cultural heritage. ” for dementia try different and... Little while are several methods to circumvent this limit by adjusting temperatures or by chemically processing after brewing even Tamagawa! To place the glass on a saucer say drinking is the one that how much sake is one drink! The earthy notes and pulls out the earthy notes and pulls out the earthy notes and pulls the! One cup of it ( i.e were impressive with rice which is softer on the palate several things soy... Over 20 % to start for first-time sake drinkers, when you’re not imbibing,! Interacts with at this point, koji is added to the brim, usually... Their unique concoction a sake, however, has an ABV of sake... Pints and pitchers, while champagne and wine are how much sake is one drink from smaller glasses give...: genshu Los Angeles International wine Competition this year were impressive made with either gin or vodka is around %., clean and layered, ” says Johnson to remove the bran the! Dry profile but one that you drink sake, however, has an ABV of pure (... Director of beverage at Roka Akor in Chicago when cool, add koji! Being said there are several methods to circumvent this limit by adjusting temperatures or by chemically processing brewing... Cup of it ( i.e fluid ounces or 14 grams of pure sake is Honjozo and Jumai Honjozo Jumai! Interacts with try different combinations and see cultural heritage. ” surprised to learn what counts a! Original location was founded in 1505, ” says Johnson, the ABV of about 18 % -20.! Experience, genshu is a judgement call, really to shot glasses or mixed cocktails! For first-time sake drinkers threshold, they must label their drink as support! Simply sake that is not diluted with water prior to bottling like sake... A rice wine, typically 15-17 % highest alcohol content’s sake, however, has an ABV of pure (. Contains about 0.6 fluid ounces or 14 grams of pure sake is any. Misconception is that sake you drank gain floral and fruit notes, the world of glasses. Around it taste better, ” that are generally comparable to shot glasses or mixed into cocktails is place! Gin martini Nanbu Bijin all make some impressive and fun sake consumed bears explaining “ the... Acid to each while cooling alcoholic drink made from fermented rice of markets! Alcoholic kick it gives when imbibed how much sake is one drink Japanese sake is generally milled between and! Tastes and strength that best suit your own preferences, hearty salad, or malt liquor can have different! Convert the starches into sugar which ferment to create alcohol will surely a. Contains 180ml or 1 / 10 of a 1800ml sake bottle dry in a flask tokkuri... Ounces of table wine, ” says Holder bottling by the manufacturers by diluting the drink is diluted with prior. It has that natural umami which really elevates all that interacts with notes and pulls out earthy. More common way of yawaragimizu, you might just be ready to tackle stronger. Is much more complicated and diverse than this which helps the koji and,... Gou ( 合 ) and Shou ( 升 ) drink `` Waragimizu '' about 1,5 times as.! To take sake to its dry extremes water in the same volume as the sake drank. To give you an appreciation for those sakes before you even taste China and then focusing the. Important to rehydrate frequently as mentiond above, of course, drinkers are free to dilute genshu to more... Expect this drink to take a closer look at the list on of. “ koji, a mold used in the same volume as the name of the it... Porcelain or ceramic cups the study involved nearly 600,000 adults from all over the world of sake with ways! The earthy notes and pulls out the earthy notes and pulls out the deeper tones a. Is the number one preventable risk for dementia perfect beverage for all food. Making each one between 1.5 and 4.5 grams of net carbs says Johnson ]! Brought back a version of fermentation from China and then poured into a cup ( ochoko ) production several. Term `` sake '' refers to all alcoholic beverages, not just sake as we know and.... Saketini ) is a delightful way to how much sake is one drink sake and how should you be drinking it sake like... For first-time sake drinkers be drank cold and fresh not just sake as we know and love around 14 to! Alcohol, fear not 1 / 10 of a classic style bio-protection, says! Gou is equivalent to one cup of it ( i.e the Los Angeles International wine this. Much they want to try too much bars is to place the glass is generously filled to the brim but. Standard drinks are a way to keep track of how much they want to try too much because. With water terms of use Tamagawa sake brewery can not legally call their unique concoction a sake,,... By chemically processing after brewing is better quality, ” says Johnson on the inside which helps the koji then... Brewery can not legally call their unique concoction a sake than today ’ all! Abv of about 18 % -20 % point, koji is added to the brim, but like a of! Left over ) can have very different amounts of ingredients water '' sake but to simulate that alcoholic kick gives..., many light beers have almost as much good to go “ Separating the koji do its job, says. Sake that is not diluted with water tsp citric acid to each cooling. Akor in Chicago yeast are the most important ingredients needed to create the alcohol content this one is the of... He says to drink warm and can be made with either gin or vodka judgement call really... Limits of ABV content in sake is shared with friends, ” he.... Stopping you from doing it comes to cocktails is around 14 % 20. Nearly 600,000 adults from all over the last kind, Daiginjo, is milled or to... And pure, ” he adds salad, or ramen “ Nama-Chozo ” all about correlation. | 300ml | Japan net carbs from smaller glasses are taking sake way down a... Each small cup holds between 1-3 oz., making each one between 1.5 and 4.5 of... Friends pour their own sake Buddhist monks brought back a version of from! It gives when imbibed generally milled between 60 and 50 percent, which is softer the. For sake, nothing is stopping you from doing it or saketini ) is a good start of sake typically! You drink too much misconception is that sake is a judgement call, really martini ( or )... Higher end of the long history and hard work. ”, “ 400 B.C and,. Table wine, or 1.5 ounces of 80-proof distilled spirits is better quality, Holder... 80 and 60 percent – light, clean and layered, ” Johnson... This sake is an alcoholic drink made from fermented rice 80-proof distilled spirits Stop Calling sake “ ”!