10 Amazing Types of Sake

by John Staughton (BASc, BFA) last updated -

 Likes  Comments

Sake is a traditional Japanese rice wine made by fermenting polished rice. Hot sake is a popular winter drink and quality sake is served cold or at room temperature, as that will preserve the delicate flavors and aromas. However, there are many different types of sake, let’s take a detailed look at them below.

Types of Sake

Premium sake is categorized by how much the rice has been polished in order to remove the bran. A lower rice ratio denotes a more premium product.

  • Daiginjo-Shu and Ginjo-Shu (also known as junmai ginjo) are both considered high-quality sakes, with their polished rice ratios below 50% and 60%, respectively.
  • Junmai-Shu and Honjozo-Shu are lower in quality, with polished rice rations below 70%. All of these varieties use the traditional koji rice.
  • Another type of sake, that is Akai, is named for the bright red variation of koji that gives it such a distinctive color.

Traditional types of sake have a more delicate flavor than wine, with dry, nutty notes.

Pouring sake into a cup

Sushi paired with sake makes for an amazing combination for a date-night dinner. Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Sakes are also distinguished by how they are handled after fermentation:

  • Yamahai is a quick brew version and produces bold flavors.
  • Namazake or nama is an unpasteurized sake that has a much shorter shelf life and requires refrigeration.
  • Namachozo is only pasteurized once for a gentler flavor.
  • Nigori is a cloudy sake that is not filtered, leaving the sediment in the bottle.
  • Taru sake is aged in barrels of Japanese cedar for an earthy taste.
  • Koshu is also aged for at least ten years, giving it a honey color and sweet taste.
  • Arabashiri is sake that has not been aged at all, which gives it a full, bright flavor.

Modern sakes include infused sake and sparkling sake, which are sweeter than traditional flavors. Kinpaku-iri is sake with gold leaf in it for decoration.

Most sake is diluted with water after brewing and has an ABV of around 15%. However, undiluted sake, known as genshu, can reach an ABV of 20%.

DMCA.com Protection Status
About the Author

John Staughton is a traveling writer, editor, publisher and photographer with English and Integrative Biology degrees from the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana (USA). He co-founded the literary journal, Sheriff Nottingham, and now serves as the Content Director for Stain’d Arts, a non-profit based in Denver, Colorado. On a perpetual journey towards the idea of home, he uses words to educate, inspire, uplift and evolve.

Rate this article
Average rating 0.0 out of 5.0 based on 0 user(s).

Latest Health News:

Aerial view of fires in the Amazon rainforest

Game Model Reveals The For United Effort Against Climate Change

A game model designed by scientists has shed light on the unfortunate realities of climate change and global action against it. According to what was observed…


How Age, Gender, & Culture Decide Loneliness

In the last few years, there has been increasing concern over loneliness and its effect on mental health. But what makes us feel lonely even when we are part…

Two people standing on chalkboard with the word social distancing in between.

COVID Spread Mainly Through Human, Not Surface Contact: CDC

Over the growing concerns of COVID transfer through surface contact, recent rewording in CDC guidelines make it clear that surface transfers are not the main…