Japanese Sake

Recently, there has been a growing popularity for sake all over the world. While the sake scene in Malaysia is not making waves as big as it is in other parts of the world, there is undoubtedly a steadying increase in demand for sake, especially in city area. In all this sake craze, however, it is actually difficult to properly define what a is sake, as sake’s are very subjective beverage that each person experiences differently.

What's Sake?

Sake is a traditional Japanese alcohol made from fermented rice. Known as nihonshu (literally, “Japanese liquor”) in Japan, it is the country’s national beverage and is commonly served during formal ceremonies, special events, and national holidays. It is typically poured from a tall bottle called a tokkuri and drunk from a sakazuki, a small porcelain cup. We take a look at the long history of this quintessential Japanese drink.

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Common Types of Sake

Here are 6 Common Types Of Sake, Junmai,Honjozo,Ginjo,Daiginjo,Futsushu and lastly Nigori. We believe there is more but we are sticking to these common ones that is well known in Japan.

This is because many independent craft brewers are more experimental, and prefer to not limit beer crafting to just a few styles, allowing for more creative beers and unique tastes which for consumers are all the better!

This is why many craft beers taste very different compared to commercially available beers, as using unique ingredients other than primarily barley and hops, such as tea and pumpkin, infuses new and exciting flavours into the beer during the brewing process. There is even a beer called Sink The Bismarck found in Scotland that has an alcohol by volume content of 41%, which is higher than your average whisky!

Junmai (純米)

Junmai refers to pure rice, meaning that Junmai sake is brewed using only rice, water, yeast, and koji without the influence of additives such as sugar or alcohol. Taste-wise, Junmai is generally richer and fuller-bodied with an intense, subtly acidic flavour. Most would recommend enjoying this ice-cold, but we feel enjoying this at room temperature or even warm mellows out the acidity and brings out its richness.

The Duvel Belgian Golden Ale is arguably the best-seller of the company. In the style of a Belgian strong pale ale and with an alcohol by volume content of 8.5%, it is definitely a strong beer that is considered by many to be a world-class beer. Its unique three-tiered bottle shape paired with even more unique flavours with hints of citrus and spice makes it an ideal beer to be drank at all occasions, and is certainly one that will be appreciated by guests. The Duvel Golden Ale is made with a variety of only the highest quality hops, and combined with a higher concentration of CO2, its creamy texture and medium body is perfect to be paired with any meal, especially seafood and fillets of white meat such as chicken.

Australian Beer

Another beer that is gaining immense popularity here in Malaysia is the Australian craft beer, Hawkers IPA. The India Pale Ale style or IPA is a style of beer that has garnered much attention in the beer world in recent years due to its historic roots from India, where Englishmen brewed beer in India in the 1800s.

Although many IPAs have unusually high alcoholic content, Hawkers IPA is a session beer that has generally low alcohol by volume, usually below 5%. Made by Hawkers Brewery in Australia in the style of the American IPA, this wonderfully balanced beer has a clear copper colour and smooth texture, a perfect thirst-quencher on a hot day. An interesting alternative to standard craft beers is the Hitachino Bourbon Barrel Aged Espresso Stout. As you can probably guess from its name, this beer is aged in a barrel and has been infused with coffee flavours during its brewing process.

Undeniably, craft beers are a growing movement among Malaysians and this trend is only rising in popularity. While classic beers such as Carlsberg and Tiger remain one of the biggest companies out there, it is obvious that craft beers, with its unique flavours and exciting presentations, are here to stay.

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