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Sake

Pleasure Wine: Japanese Sake

 

Discover the Japanese Sake

 

Sake comes from Japan (although it was technically born in China around the 3rd century). It's an alcohol made with fermented rice. Sake, which is often called "Nihonshu" (the word "Nihon" means “Japan”, and "Shu" is the term used for "Alcohol"; so sake literally stands for "Japanese Alcohol"), is the result of centuries of skill and tradition.

At the time, Shinto priestesses were the only ones allowed to make sake, as it was used as an offer to the many gods of the island. Later, between the 6th and 12th century, the alcohol was mainly consumed by the Imperial Court, as it had become their favorite drink. During this period, the "Koji" mushroom also started being used to hasten the fermentation process. Eight centuries later, the sake has gone beyond the walls of imperial palaces and has now found a place in every Japanese household.

You can serve it hot, poured in small ceramic cups (called "Choko") or ceramic bowls (known as "Okan"). If you want to drink your sake cold, tradition dictates that you use a small wooden square recipient: the "Masu". Rest assured, you always have the option to just drink sake in a wine glass. We're sure the gods won't be too offended.

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