Izakayas...

Shochu Night Out
In Manhattan on Sunday, February 12th nearly 300 people were treated to a taste of shochu from the hands of shochu producers visiting from Japan. Dinner guests at Inakaya, Robataya, and Sakagura were greeted with sixteen shochu producers sampling their products. At Inakaya the producers were situated around the perimeter of the high ceilinged space where we tried old favorites such as iichiko, ZuisenJinkoo, and Kappa No Sasoimizu, but were also introduced to a new distillery – Komasa Jyozo from Kagoshima Prefecture, which now offers four new products in the U.S. Window’s Mugiichi and Window’s Migaki… Read More...

Sake Bar Decibel
Sake Bar Decibel claims to be the first sake bar in NYC, founded in 1993. But that's not what should draw you to Decibel. A simple wooden sign marks the exterior. An obscure (if you don't know why its there) illuminated "On Air" sign beckons you to a staircase leading to a basement on a side street in the East Village. Steps from 2nd Avenue, this Japanese speakeasy is easy to miss. You step into a small bar area and are transported into Tokyo's Golden Gai district, except not. The small bar (6-8 stools?) is much better equipped than anything you'll find in Golden Gai. A row of sake bottles beckons you to imbibe. A closer look also reveals shochu, Japanese whiskey, and other drinks. An even closer look... Read More...

contest
The inaugural Shochu & Awamori Tasting Contest has just been announced. The preliminary round takes place Monday February 6th to Saturday February 11th, 2012. Big prizes are avaialable. The Grand Prize winner gets $2,000 & 2 Round Trip Tickets to Japan. 2nd and 3rd place get nice cash and travel bonuses as well. But that's the top 3 out of almost 50 people who qualify for the Final Round event at the Hotel Kitano on Wednesday, February 15th. All of this has me thinking about what it will take to win... Read More...

New York Shochu Night Out
The Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) and Japan Sake & Shochu Makers Association (JSS) are co-sponsoring the 1st ever (hopefully annual!) New York Shochu Night Out. This ambitious city-wide shochu tasting takes place on Sunday, February 12th from 6pm to 9pm for dinner guests at three famous NYC izakayas. If you haven't been to any of them, you are in for a treat. All are lovely establishments with delicious food, impeccable service, and great atmospheres. Read More...

Print
It has never been a better time to be a shochu drinker in New York City. On February 12 & 13, JETRO & JSS bring us "Experience Shochu, The National Spirit of Japan." If you are curious about the spirit or already know you're a fan, you owe it to yourself to make time for these events. Read More...

Kasadela_FB
  Japanese love their parties and they love their drinks. To show just how much, they have both a bonenkai (忘年会) and shinnenkai (新年会) parties. Bonenkai is a party to “forget” the past year, usually held in December. Shinnenkai is a party to welcome the new year, usually coinciding with the lunar (Chinese) new year. We had the good fortune to be invited to the Sake Shinnenkai hosted by certified sake sommelier (Kiki-Sake-Shi きき酒師) Chizuko Niikawa (photo on lower right) of Sake Discoveries. The event was held at Kasadela, a lovely izakaya in the Lower East Side (11th… Read More...

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