Ask Udder Smith: Nihonshu basics?
I love Japanese food, and have decided to try drinking more sake. The problem is, I don’t know very much about nihonshu, and had a horrible experience while still living in America with some cheap sake. Now that I live in Japan, I know there are many varieties — please help me choose something light that goes well with Japanese food.
Imbiber in Iwate
First, congratulatory mooooosss for reaching out, culturally, towards what some claim represents the epitome of Japanese taste. Many of us western breeds, alas, have had run-ins with cheap sake, but with a bit of knowledge, you can choose a mild, wondrous taste. Sake is refining its reputation worldwide, as well as nationwide, as a drink suitable across a spectrum of foods and across a range of ages — not just for o-yajis (little old men) anymore!
I pride myself on my extensive knowledge on moooogaritas, so when I look for something new in Nihonshu, I look towards the world’s English speaking expert, an American living in Japan. Nihonshu is frabjous, but does require a seasoned taste in selection. See his website here: