Kagemusha means “shadow warrior” … and was the title of a 1980 Akira Kurosawa film. The shochu gets its name from the black koji and robust imo flavor. The sexy black bottle & black label with gold and red trim add to the mystique.
This is a catch-all page for shochus from less common grains. Shochu distillation is in a highly experimental era in its history. The Japanese government allows a great deal of leeway in what classifies as shochu so spirit makers are experimenting with many different types of distillates. Different shochu producers have taken very different approaches to flavored shochus.
Some of the more exotic are profiled here including, so far, carrot and sesame shochus. We’ve seen, but not yet tried, green tea and coffee shochus as well. As these lists grow, black sugar and buckwheat (soba) may get their own pages since these are relatively common ingredients, but links to carrot, green tea, and other exotic shochus will remain here.
Kikaijima Kurochu An aged black sugar (kokuto) shochu with a rich, luscious complexity.
Towari A 100% soba shochu with rich, nutty, roasted flavors and a surprising caramel popcorn flavor when diluted with water.
Akanone A carrot shochu with impeccable flavor and surprising complexity.
Amami A rich, tasty black sugar shochu from the Amami islands.
Beniotome A roasted sesame shochu with a rich, nutty scent and taste. A perfect dessert shochu?
Kagura Tensho A buckwheat (soba) blend. Smooth and easy to drink.
Tenpo An oak aged date shochu. Richly complicated with raisin, grape, and wood throughout.
Kagura no Mai A light soba shochu with an interesting aroma profile.
Jougo A lovely black sugar shochu. What it lacks in complexity it makes up for in flavor.
Unkai An affordable, approachable soba shochu.