Distillery: Higa Shuzo Co, Ltd.
Location: Itoman, Okinawa Prefecture, Japan
Grain: 100% Thai (Indica) Rice
Koji: Okinawa Black
Alcohol: 24% (48 proof)
As with most Awamori, Shimauta is a rich, flavorful, herbal spirit. An earthy nose hints at the flavor you expect from an Awamori. The warm mouthfeel promises a richness that does not disappoint. The herbal flavor is never overpowering, but also does not hide. There is the slightest hint of sweetness, but it is just promised, not delivered. The herbal (again) finish lingers into a buttery end.
The Verdict: Worth Drinking
This is a nice balance between the previous Awamori we’ve profiled. Ryukyu is a big bodied, almost Kaoliang-like Awamori, while Zuisen is an easier drinking, though still flavorful option. This is an Awamori best enjoyed neat or cut with cold water. Ice would hide the complexity while hot water allows the herbal flavor to overpower the subtlety that hides beneath the surface.