Several flavored shochus have entered the US market over the past several years, but these brands have taken two very different approaches to the American consumer.
The inaugural Shochu & Awamori Tasting Contest has just been announced. The preliminary round takes place Monday February 6th to Saturday February 11th, 2012. Big prizes are avaialable. The Grand Prize winner gets $2,000 & 2 Round Trip Tickets to Japan. 2nd and 3rd place get nice cash and travel bonuses as well. But that's the top 3 out of almost 50 people who qualify for the Final Round event at the Hotel Kitano on Wednesday, February 15th. All of this has me thinking about what it will take to win...
Beniotome claims to be the only spirit in the world distilled from sesame seeds. This is probably true, because, of course, sesame seeds don't hold a lot of sugar. Fortunately for us, the seeds are not the primary distillate - barley and rice in the mash provide the sugars (and alcohol) while the roasted sesame seeds provide a completely unique drinking experience.