All...

Aka Kirishima is a seasonal sweet potato shochu from Kirishima Shuzo, the producer of the best selling shochu in Japan, Kuro Kirishima. Much as iichiko put Oita on the map as a producer of barley shochu to rival Iki Island (more barley shochu is now produced in Oita than in the traditional home of barley shochu), Kirishima's products put Miyazaki on the map as a rival to Kagoshima's dominance as the home of sweet potato shochus. Read More...

Shochu Tuesdays have a new home at SakaMai. If you've been following the site for a while, you know that these started at Izakaya Ten back in 2008 when I first discovered shochu. The experience stuck with me and corrupted me in ways I didn't expect. Read More...

Traditionally in an izakaya dining experience, you'll finish the night with a noodle or rice dish in order to fill up after the otsumami (small drinking snacks) courses. An alternative that's quite popular with many Japanese drinkers, is to stop off for a bowl of late night ramen. Typically these ramen shops will be packed with happily drunk people slurping bowls of soup while chatting boisterously with lots of laughter. Read More...

The name Akamaoh, or Red Devil, coupled with the black label over black bottle would suggest a full bodied sweet potato shochu that would give you the deep funk that Japanese often refer to as "imo kusai" (smelly sweet potatoes). However, Akamaoh, may have a devilish name for a completely different reason. It's so easy drinking, it's dangerous in a "devil made me do it way." Read More...

Kintaro is a premium barley shochu from Nishiyoshia Syuzou in Fukuoka, which I was fortunate enough to visit last summer. I'd sought them out for that trip specifically because of their fantastic barley shochus, which have only recently begun appearing in the U.S. They've yet to catch on, but it's only a matter of time. Read More...

As I've delved deeper into the world of shochu, I've become increasingly interested in pairing shochu with foods. I first became aware of the differences when I began drinking sweet potato shochu with roasted meats and rice shochu with seafood. The shochu enhanced the food's flavors and the oils in the foods changed the character of the shochu. Over time I've found that some foods pair amazingly well with shochu while others are a complete miss. Read More...

Copyright © 2019 · All Rights Reserved · Kampai!