【DE】From Sake to Shochu – Discover Beverage Specialties from Japan

Famous sake and beyond  – Japan has a variety of alcoholic beverages to offer. At the Japan Pavilion at this year’s BCB, you’ll find a diverse range of about 20 Japanese alcoholic beverage producers, distributors and retailers showcasing their products. Visit this manifold location at the International Bar and Beverage Trade Show to discover the wonderful array of Japanese drinks and take the opportunity to discuss business!  


What is Sake?


Sake is an alcoholic beverage made from rice through fermentation and filtration. For fermentation of sake, rice koji, a kind of fungi grown on rice, is used. Sake has been made for over 1,000 years all over the Japanese islands. There are about 1,500 sake makers producing their unique sake with different regional tastes.

Immerse Yourself in the impressive World of Sake


Sake is becoming more and more famous all over the world, but few know yet that there are different kinds of it, and each kind has quite different and unique flavors.


Therefore, under the title “The Glamour of Sake and its Diversity,” a sake seminar will be held at Liquid Stage on October 13. In two seminar sessions, sake expert Anselm Huppenbauer will introduce the audience to the beauty of sake: the first session will take place from 1:30 to 2:05 p.m. and the second from 2:25 to 3:00 p.m. Visitors will receive tips for pairing with food, as well as valuable information on the optimal serving temperature and other ways to enjoy this versatile beverage.


Anselm Huppenbauer studied Japanology and Korean studies and feels right at home in East Asia. During his travels and research stays, he learned to appreciate the cuisine of East Asia and the value of sake as a perfect food companion. The certified sake sommelier is already looking forward to introducing BCB visitors to the variety and beauty of sake.


What is Shochu?


Shochu is a traditional Japanese distilled liquor. It is made by fermenting and distilling grains, potatoes, or other ingredients using koji (malted rice). Three types of koji mold are used to make shochu: black koji mold, white koji mold, and yellow koji mold.


Representative types of shochu include those distilled from potatoes, wheat, and rice. As the ingredients that go into the making of shochu are closely tied to the locality, much shochu is produced in the Kyushu region and on the minor islands of Japan.


What is the characteristic of Awamori?

Awamori is a rice shochu that is a specialty of Okinawa Prefecture, and is the oldest type of shochu in Japan with 600 years of history. Koji is made with long-grain rice and black koji mold. It is fermented by adding water and yeast, then distilled in a pot still (single-type distillation apparatus). It is said that this manufacturing method hasn’t changed much from 600 years ago.


What is Japanese Whisky?

Today, it ranks among the top five whiskies of the world for the delicate elegance and complex flavors that are unique to Japan. The numerous flavors nurtured in a natural environment with four changing seasons, through the fine manual work that characterizes the Japanese people, have been highly rated around the world.


In particular, delicate and complex flavors and tastes are achieved through varied production methods, including the use of Japanese mizunara oak barrels with an oriental fragrance resembling incenses such as sandalwood and aloeswood, as well as the sophisticated blending technology. This year, the Japan Spirits and Liqueurs Makers Association, which is an organization of whisky producers, established the standards for Japanese whisky. Ongoing efforts are put into realizing further development.


For Standards for the labelling of Japanese whisky, please visit the Website of the Japan Spirits and Liqueurs Makers Association:


What is Umeshu?

Umeshu, which is a representative liqueur of Japan, is made by steeping Japanese apricots (ume) in liquor and sugar, leaving it to mature for several months or as long as several years, then extracting the components. As it can also be made easily at home, it is a beverage that many people are familiar with.


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