When it comes to predicting the next big spirit, I believe shochu has the potential to take the world by storm and introduce consumers to a whole new range of flavours. There’s still a lot of education to be shared about Japan’s national spirit in the west and writing about it is my way of contributing to the shochu revolution!
Shochu is one of the world’s most diverse spirits, thanks to the plethora of ingredients it can be made from and the range of styles it can be enjoyed in. Outside of Japan, shochu awareness is becoming more apparent and some western distilleries are looking at how to incorporate it into their portfolio.
UK-based drink mavericks BrewDog took the plunge by creating the UK’s first shochu Inugami. While I’m happy that shochu has been introduced through a western lens, it’s important to point out how Inugami differs from traditional shochu so consumers can make an informed buying decision.
If you’re looking to step outside your comfort zone with a unique kind of drink they you can’t go wrong with shochu. Japan’s national spirit is made with a smorgasbord of different ingredients, with one of the most interesting being sesame seeds.
Beniotome Red Maiden Black is the first sesame shochu I’ve tried and it’s one of the most multifaceted drinks I’ve come across on my shochu journey so far.
Since being bitten by the shochu bug, I’ve been on a mission to try as many different types of Japan’s national spirit as possible. From sweet potato to barley, the base ingredients of shochu are as diverse as the breweries that produce such a fine drink.
Shochu is one of the most unique spirits on the planet because of the variety of ingredients that it’s made from and distinctive flavour profiles. Whether it’s imo (sweet potato) or mugi (barley) shochu, you’re guaranteed a different drinking experience from each spirit that you try.
Japanese culture has a unique identity, and that goes for Japanese sake as well. Ever since discovering shochu, I’ve been making my way through different blends. No shochu is ever the same as the last one. That comes down to the level of craftmanship from the people in the sake breweries who pour their heart and soul into the work.