SHO-CHU The Precious Spirits of Kyushu,Japan

What is Shochu?

Shochu is a Japanese distilled liquor that embodies the climate of Japan and the subtlety of the Japanese people. Shochu is made from clean mountain spring water and locally grown ingredients such as barely, rice and potatoes. Approximately 93% of all shochu is made on the island of Kyushu. Kyushu is home to many distilleries, each of which uses local specialty products and original techniques to distill shochu.

History of Shochu

Health Benefits

Types of Shochu

Most of the world's distilled liquors are made from certain select ingredients, but shochu is different in that it can be made from a wide variety of ingredients; distillers in different areas of Japan use various locally grown ingredients to make shochu. Many people enjoy shochu made from potatoes, rice and barley—all of which are grown in abundance throughout Japan.

Ingredients

Manufacturing Process

Enjoying Shochu

Shochu can be made from a wide variety of ingredients, including barely, rice, potatoes, sesame, brown sugar and chestnuts. This is why it can be enjoyed any way you like. Shochu can be served on the rocks or with water or hot water; or fruits or herbs can be added to make fruit liquors or medicinal beverages. It is also an excellent base for cocktails. Even when mixed with water or hot water, shochu does not lose its flavor, making it the perfect companion for many different dishes.

Ways to Drink Shochu

With meals

Recipes

【 History of Shochu 】

While the exact origins of shochu are unclear, the most widely held theory, according to written records, is that it was spawned from the nanbanshu (lit. "southern liquor") brought to the Japanese mainland from the Kingdom of Siam (now Thailand) via the Ryukyu Kingdom (now Okinawa) in the 15th century. Perfected over many generations, shochu is now made by over 300 distillers. This is more than three times the number of scotch distillers and reveals just how much the Japanese love their shochu.

【 History of Shochu 】

【 History of Shochu 】

【 Health Benefits 】

Low in calories

Low in calories

Made from natural ingredients, most types of shochu use no sugars and are free of additives. For this reason, shochu is lower in calories than other alcoholic beverages.

Enhances blood flow

Enhances blood flow

Shochu helps boost good cholesterol that helps to remove fatty buildup from blood vessels, thus preventing arteriosclerosis and enhancing blood flow.

Promotes longevity

Promotes longevity

Studies have shown that shochu dissolves blood clots and improves circulation. This prevents diseases with a high risk of mortality, such as arteriosclerosis, myocardial infarction and stroke.

Relieves stress

Relieves stress

Shochu is effective in relieving the stress brought on by our modern world. Drinking shochu in moderation promotes relaxation and helps to release physical and mental tension.

【 Types of Shochu 】

Most of the world's distilled liquors are made from certain select ingredients, but shochu is different in that it can be made from a wide variety of ingredients; distillers in different areas of Japan use various locally grown ingredients to make shochu. Many people enjoy shochu made from potatoes, rice and barley—all of which are grown in abundance throughout Japan.

【 Manufacturing Process 】

How shochu is made differs depending on where it is made and what it is made from. The following process is the most common.

1.Raw ingredient processing
1.Raw ingredient processing

2.Koji (malt) production
2.Koji (malt) production

3.Primary fermentation
3.Primary fermentation

6.Maturation
6.Maturation

5.Distillation
5.Distillation

4.Secondary fermentation
4.Secondary fermentation

【 Ways to Drink Shochu 】

Straight

Straight

For first-time drinkers of shochu, we recommend you try it straight so you can enjoy the aroma of the ingredients as it slowly fills your mouth.

On the rocks

On the rocks

Place ice in a chilled glass and fill with shochu. Enjoy the changing aspects of the shochu as the ice melts.

With water/hot water

With water/hot water

Shochu retains its aroma even when diluted with water (or hot water). Adjust the alcohol content to your preferred level and enjoy with a meal. A soft water is recommended for diluting.

In a cocktail

In a cocktail

You can also enjoy shochu as a cocktail base. Try using shochu in one of your favorite cocktails for a new twist.

Japanese Meal
Japanese Meal
Western Meal
Western Meal

European Meal
European Meal
Chinese Meal
Chinese Meal

【 With meals 】

Shochu has been enjoyed with meals since olden times. This is due to the many ways it can be served and the fact that it retains its flavor even when diluted. Also, the wealth of base ingredients allows you to choose a shochu to suit any dish.

Recipes

Shrimp, Avocado and Wasabi Salad

Shrimp, Avocado and Wasabi Salad

Ingredients: Shrimp, avocado, mayonnaise, soy sauce, wasabi (or horseradish), lemon juice, salt, shochu

① Add salt and shochu to hot water and boil shrimp in the mixture.
② Peel avocado and mash.
③ Season with mayonnaise, soy sauce, wasabi and lemon juice.
④ Dress peeled, halved shrimp with the mixture in ③.

Shochu Potato Salad

Shochu Potato Salad

Ingredients: Potatoes, corned beef, onions, mayonnaise, powdered cheese, herbs, salt, pepper

① Boil potatoes, remove skins and mash.
② Chop onions and stir fry with corned beef.
③ After the ingredients in ① and ② have cooled, add mayonnaise, powdered cheese, salt, and pepper. Mix well.
④ Add finely minced herbs (basil etc.) and fashion into round balls.
⑤ Brown in a greased frying pan.

Roast Chicken Breast with Basil Sauce

Roast Chicken Breast with Basil Sauce

Ingredients: Chicken breast, lettuce, tomatoes, olive oil, salt, Genovese sauce (store-bought)

① Thinly slice the chicken breast and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
② Cut lettuce into thin strips.
③ Plunge tomatoes in hot water and peel. Dice and dress with salt and olive oil.
④ Lightly roast the chicken breast in a frying pan.
⑤ Lay the lettuce on a plate. Place the chicken on the lettuce and garnish with tomatoes.
⑥ Top with a small amount of Genovese sauce.

Onion Shochu Fritters

Onion Shochu Fritters

Ingredients: Onions, flour, shochu, curry powder, salt

① Peel onions and cut into wedges.
② Mix flour and shochu to make a batter.
③ Add a pinch of salt for flavor.
④ Cover the onions in flour and dip in the batter. Fry in oil at 175° C.
⑤ Arrange on a plate and sprinkle with curry powder.

Chinese-Style Tofu

Chinese-Style Tofu

Ingredients: Tofu, zha cai (Sichuan pickles), cucumbers, chili oil, vinegar, soy sauce

① Cut tofu and drain with a paper towel.
② Cut zha cai and cucumbers into 4mm slices and toss with chili oil.
③ Place the tofu on a plate and top with the ingredients in ②.
④ Mix vinegar and soy sauce. Season to taste.

SHO-CHU The Precious Spirits of Kyushu,Japan