Spiced Nuts

You always need a bowl with something to nibble on when drinking sake at a table with friends and family. The right snack can also enhance umami and other flavor profiles of sake. This simple spiced nuts recipe should do the trick. Another plus: you can make a lot in advance and just keep it…

Koshi no Kanbai Tasting Notes

Daiginjo Chotokusen While ginjo aromas are usually described in terms of melon, banana and apple, the ginjo aromas of this sake are like a Venn diagram of them all; no one element stands out any more than another. The fusion of these all creates a hard-to-describe but distinguished and refined aroma that leads to a…


This is a very simple dish with many variations that we got at Moto Stand in Shinjuku, Tokyo (featured in the Tokyo bar guide in issue #1). It is basically sashimi slathered with sesame, chopped onions and other condiments on a bed of alfalfa. The sashimi and sesame are the essentials because the oily fish…

Crab Cake Soup

Crab sake soup in the shell. Some casual restaurants in Japan (like izakaya) will cook a crab shell over a charcoal grill with the meat still in it and pour sake in as a kind of broth. The flavor is sharp; some love it, some hate it, and it is certainly considered down-and-dirty dining.

Daitokuji Beans

Daitokuji fermented black beans. Named after the Kyoto temple nearby which you can purchase these incredibly pungent delicacies, these dried beans generally only pair well with unfiltered or unpasteurized sake. Their powerful flavor (which some people find offensive) would probably overpower a nice, delicate ginjo.