Shochu Guide

What is Shochu? 
Japanese Shochu Guide: Difference between shochu and sake

Shochu is a Japanese distilled spirit that contains about 25% to 40% alcohol. Shochu is very different from sake. Sake is a fermented alcohol made from rice, whereas Shochu is distilled and can be made from a variety of ingredients like sweet potato (imo), barley (mugi), and rice (kome). 

How Do I Drink Shochu? 

Shochu, like any other spirits, can be enjoyed in many ways. You can drink it on the rocks, diluted with water/soda and even in cocktails or tea. However the most common way to consume would be mixing shochu with cold or hot water. 

Sake Inn Shochu Guide: Ways to drink shochu: With Water
Sake Inn Shochu Guide: Ways to drink shochu: With Hot Water
Sake Inn Shochu Guide: Ways to drink shochu: On the rocks
Sake Inn Shochu Guide: Ways to drink shochu: Straight

For shochu cocktail recipes, do visit our blog, where we will regularly update it with cocktail recipes for you to try out at home! 

Different Types of Shochu
Sake Inn Shochu Guide: Different types of shochu
  • Rice (kome) shochu has a fairly thick taste. The aroma of grain is similar to that of sake, which it shares its base ingredient with.

  • Sweet potato (imo) shochu has a plump fragrance and soft sweetness. The distinctive taste and aroma is also best enjoyed while served hot.

  • Shochu distilled from barley (mugi) results in a light and mild taste. It is easy to drink, and if allowed to cask-age, the taste will be slightly reminiscent of single-malt whiskey.

  • Buckweat (soba) shochu has a sweet, fruity aroma that lingers. It has a milder taste compared to mugi shochu, but with the same drinking ease.

  • Shochu distilled from brown sugar has a clean, dry taste. Contrary to what many believe, the resulting shochu is not as sweet as expected.

  • Shiso Shochu is made with the aromatic Shiso shochu, it carries a wonderful scent and soft flavour of shiso leaves


Now that you know more about drinking shochu, find the right shochu for yourself. Here are some recommendations on the various shochu you can try!

Mugi Shochu: iichiko Mugi Shochu

Imo Shochu: Tekkan Kuro Imo Shochu

Shiso Shochu: Godo Tan-Taka-Tan Shiso Shochu

Check out our blog for shochu recipes as well☺️