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Imo Shochu – Candy Potato Shochu drink

Imo Shochu, a conventional Japanese spirit, is a vital a part of Japan’s tradition. Crafted primarily from candy potatoes, this distilled liquor embodies a centuries-old custom of meticulous craftsmanship. Imo Shochu is widely known for its clean and versatile taste profile, starting from earthy and candy to subtly fruity notes. Imo Shochu is a scrumptious style of Japan’s heritage. You may get pleasure from it straight up, on the rocks, or in cocktails. Locals and world lovers can savor the essence of this iconic Japanese spirit.


What’s Imo shochu?

imo shochu

Imo shochu, additionally known as candy potato shochu,  is a shochu made out of candy potatoes from the Kagoshima and Miyazaki prefectures. It has a singular sweetness and aroma, however the taste and aroma can range surprisingly relying on the number of uncooked potatoes and the manufacturing technique. Widespread alcoholic drinks made out of candy potatoes are uncommon even on the earth. Characterised by its smooth, elegant sweetness and distinctive aroma. Locals typically loved it straight, on the rocks, or blended with water. It has a decrease alcohol content material in comparison with another spirits like vodka, sometimes starting from round 20% to 25% alcohol by quantity. The drink has gained reputation in Japan and internationally for its distinctive style and flexibility.

Imo shochu Historical past

imo shochu

Within the historic evolution of Imo Shochu in Japan, its origins hint again to historical occasions, with the spirit’s introduction from China to Satsuma through the Ryukyu Kingdom. Initially made out of rice, Imo Shochu’s important transformation started in 1705 when candy potatoes have been launched to Satsuma. Cultivation of candy potatoes, particularly on the Shirasu Plateau, flourished. By the 18th century, candy potato Shochu manufacturing grew to become a particular characteristic of the Satsuma area. The tactic then unfold to different areas like Miyakonojo, Sadowara, Obi, Takanabe, Miyakejima, and Hachijojima, creating a various panorama of Imo Shochu manufacturing.

In fashionable occasions through the Meiji interval, sake brewing rules have been lifted in 1871, resulting in a surge in non-public Shochu producers in Kagoshima Prefecture. Nevertheless, challenges arose as a consequence of spoilage points and the notion that potato Shochu was of decrease high quality than rice Shochu. In response, manufacturing restrictions have been imposed in 1924, and voluntary rules have been carried out in 1954 and 1956 in Kagoshima and Miyazaki Prefectures, respectively. Regardless of ups and downs, Imo Shochu skilled booms within the Seventies and 2000s, with the latter characterised by a speedy improve in consumption, notably of potato Shochu. This development solidified its standing as a distinguished Japanese spirit, surpassing barley Shochu in taxable export quantity by 2010.

Traits of Imo shochu

imo shochu

Imo Shochu is characterised by its candy taste. It presents a various style expertise influenced by components like candy potato selection, manufacturing space, kind of koji mildew, and preparation strategies. The general profile is marked by a strong sweetness, offering a mellow and wealthy style. The distinct candy potato taste varies amongst completely different manufacturers, providing a broad spectrum of choices, from daring and intense expressions highlighting the essence of candy potatoes to lighter, extra refreshing variations with much less pronounced candy potato notes. Moreover, some manufacturers characteristic fruity aromas, including to the distinctive enchantment of potato Shochu. This selection in style is among the fascinating features of potato Shochu, permitting lovers to discover and select from a variety of flavors.

Charms of Imo shochu

imo shochu

The attraction of potato Shochu rests in its distinctive sweetness and aroma. Regardless of its candy style, it comprises zero sugar, making it an excellent selection for these in search of sweetness whereas managing sugar consumption. Candy potatoes have a delicate sweetness that’s completely different from different meals. They style good with out feeling heavy, like sugary drinks. Notably, the perfume of potato Shochu is a standout characteristic. Candy potatoes have a fruity scent. Additionally they have scents just like citrus, lychee, muscat, and banana. This fragrant complexity provides an additional layer of enchantment to the distinctive attraction of potato Shochu.

Varieties of Imo Shochu

imo shochu

Potato Shochu attracts its distinct flavors from a various vary of candy potatoes, with over 40 varieties influencing its style. Kogane Sengan, Pleasure White, and Shiroyutaka stand out among the many generally used varieties specifically cultivated for Shochu manufacturing. Kogane Sengan, particularly, holds a distinguished place as a consequence of its widespread reputation, celebrated for its elegant and mild aroma and noticeable sharp sweetness. These uncooked candy potato varieties play an important position in shaping potato Shochu’s distinctive and interesting style profile.

Widespread/normal Imo Shochu

Hamada Sake Brewery Purple Rabbit Horse

This candy potato shochu is called after the well-known horse “Purple Hare” within the Chinese language historical past ebook “Romance of the Three Kingdoms” and is alleged to run 1,000 miles in someday. It’s characterised through the use of Kagoshima’s “Golden Sengan” and brewing it with smooth water from Kandake Spring. You may benefit from the refreshing sharpness, fruity aroma, and mellow style.

Taikai Sake Brewery Umi

A fruity potato shochu that’s straightforward to drink, even for rookies. It is a model made by “Oumi Sake Brewery,” which has a brewery on the Osumi Peninsula in Kagoshima Prefecture. It makes use of “Beniotome” and is brewed at “Onsen Suizutsuru.” It’s made by vacuum distilling moromi obtained by fermenting yellow koji at a low temperature. It’s characterised by its vivid and refreshing style.

Hamada Sake Brewery DAIYAME

This candy potato shochu has a stunning aroma paying homage to lychee. This bottle is made within the Denzoin brewery of Hamada Sake Brewery, and its title comes from the Kagoshima dialect phrase “Daimeme,” which implies `”to heal one’s fatigue with a late drink.” Its candy and mellow style and sharp aftertaste will be loved as a drink with meals. 

Imo shochu FAQ

What’s the storage and ageing technique of Imo shochu?

The method of storing and ageing potato Shochu performs an important position in refining its qualities. Initially, the distinct odor from freshly distilled Shochu is diminished by means of storage, making certain a stabilized alcohol high quality. Whereas normal Shochu is normally shipped after one to 3 months, permitting it to age for a 12 months or two ends in a extra subdued and deeper taste, contributing to a mellower style. 

What’s the best method to drink candy potato shochu, even for rookies?

Beginning with water is a good suggestion if you’re new to candy potato shochu. We advocate refreshing manufacturers made with white koji or vacuum distillation. In case you are involved in regards to the distinctive scent of candy potatoes, attempt carbonated potato shochu with a fruity aroma.

make Imo shochu?

imo shochu

Sorting and cleansing of uncooked potatoes

At Sanwa Sake Brewery, we primarily use Koganesengan, which will be stated to be the royal candy potato for making genuine candy potato shochu. Golden Sengan is a candy potato wealthy in starch and most fitted for making shochu.Native farmers in Kagoshima Prefecture develop the potatoes and on the Shirasu Plateau. We choose them in our warehouse and punctiliously wash and use the undamaged, high-quality potatoes. Earlier than the second preparation, they steamed the Kogane Sengan in a candy potato steamer and finely crushed in a crusher.

Koji making

Sprinkle seed koji on steamed rice to make rice koji. Sanwa Shuzo’s genuine potato shochu makes use of white, black, and yellow koji. The koji room has a glass window, so you possibly can watch the koji-making course of exterior the brewery.

Main and secondary preparation utilizing kame tsubo

The follow of Honkaku Imo Shochu entails the primary stage of mixing rice koji, water, and yeast to create the “main moromi (sake mash),” and the alcoholic fermentation of the primary stage of mash by mixing steamed and crushed Kogane Senkan and water. Subsequent, there’s a second stage of preparation to make the principle mash.


The alcohol is extracted by distilling the completed mash in a pot. At Sanwa Sake Brewery, we use a uncommon picket barrel distiller (at regular strain), considered one of solely 10 or so in Kagoshima. The smooth steam distinctive to cedar wooden produces alcohol with a mellow style. But, it creates a wealthy and wealthy taste of candy potato shochu. Yasuo Tsuru, the one craftsman in Japan, manufactured the picket barrel distiller used to make Sanwa Shuzo’s candy potato shochu. Inheriting the methods from his predecessor, Tatsuya Tsuru, a grasp craftsman who received the Medal with Yellow Ribbon as a “fashionable grasp craftsman,” he takes three months to create them with none blueprints or nails.

Storage/Growing older

At Sanwa Shuzo, the distilled potato shochu is aged in unglazed pots. Maturing slowly whereas repeatedly respiratory within the jar. Thanks partly to the impact of far infrared rays, the sharp style of freshly distilled candy potato shochu rounded out, producing a mellow and deep candy potato shochu.

The place to purchase Imo shochu?


At HAVESPI in Shinjuku, you possibly can drink 100 kinds of shochu from everywhere in the nation for limitless time for simply an admission price of three,240 yen. You may as well drink lettuce, chestnuts, milk, and different kinds of shochu that you simply’ve by no means seen at a store. There are such a lot of varieties that you could be must know what to drink, however should you ask the workers for suggestions, they are going to kindly provide you with ideas.

Handle: sixth ground, Watase Tama Constructing, 3-9-9 Shinjuku, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo
Cellphone quantity: 05057836015
Hours open: [Monday – Friday] 17:00 – 23:00 (LO 22:45) [Saturday, Sunday and holidays] 12:00 – 16:00 (LO 15:30) 17:00 – 23:00 (LO 22:45)
Web site: http://havespi.jp/

Kumamoto Izakaya Shingai (渋谷道玄坂 熊本居酒屋 新市街)

Kumamoto Izakaya Shingai serves meals and alcohol from Kumamoto Prefecture, the navel of Kyushu. By the best way, Shingai is a spot in Kumamoto with many izakaya ( Japanese pubs). Kumamoto delicacies consists of mustard lotus root, horse sashimi, and different dishes that go nicely with shochu.

Handle: Nonaka Constructing 1F, 1-18-2 Dogenzaka, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo
Cellphone quantity: 0364164014
Hours open: [Monday to Friday] 11:30 to fifteen:00 (L.O. 14:00) 18:00 to 24:00 (L.O. 23:00) [Saturday, Sunday, and holidays] 18:00 to 24:00 (L.O. O23:00)
Web site: https://tabelog.com/tokyo/

Tokyo Shochu Bar GEN (東京焼酎&梅酒barGEN&MATERIAL)

Would you wish to pattern and examine many kinds of alcohol within the stress-free house of a bar with Japan’s largest collection of shochu and plum wine? There are 5,862 kinds of shochu and 1,221 kinds of plum wine. With all of those, you is likely to be spoiled for selection, however you’ll undoubtedly have the ability to discover the alcoholic beverage of your selection.

Handle: Aoyama Constructing B1F, 2-9-10 Shibuya, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo
Cellphone quantity: 0354858316
Web site: https://www.instagram.com/

For On-line Procuring

For individuals who wish to order or purchase Imo Shochu in Japan, you possibly can mail it to your own home on-line on Rakuten. You may take a look at some outlets that promote Imo Shochu through Rakuten by clicking under.

And for many who wish to order or purchase however reside away from Japan. You may ship them from Rakuten by following the steps under. Rakuten presents Worldwide Delivery Service, so don’t worry about how one can obtain your gadgets. Rakuten World Categorical is a web-based procuring service that enables customers to buy at shops in Japan.


First, you want a Rakuten ID. In case you are already a Rakuten member, you can begin utilizing Rakuten World Categorical. You probably have not registered but, click on right here.

Get your private RGX deal with

After signing up, you’re going to get a Japanese deal with: a Rakuten World Categorical deal with.

Store at shops in Japan

Now that you simply get your self a private RGX deal with (Rakuten World Categorical deal with). You may store on-line in Japan, click on right here to buy Imo Shochu (not solely Rakuten however different on-line shops are additionally included).

 When you’ve gotten determined in your gadgets, set the supply deal with to your Rakuten World Categorical deal with.

Affirm gadgets

After gadgets are shipped to the RGX deal with, they are going to be packed into one bundle. You additionally obtain an e-mail upon confirming this stuff and cost.

As soon as the cost is confirmed, your bundle might be delivered inside a chosen interval relying in your transport selection.

Ultimate Ideas

In conclusion, Imo Shochu is a testomony to Japan’s cultural heritage. It combines custom and innovation to create a spirit that represents its origins. Imo Shochu’s journey demonstrates the facility and adaptableness of Japanese craftsmanship. It started in Satsuma and continues to thrive with fashionable developments and accomplishments. Lovers can benefit from the numerous flavors of candy potatoes. These flavors enhanced by means of cautious manufacturing strategies. If you discover Imo Shochu, might you discover its pleasant style and recognize its wealthy historical past and craftsmanship.

You may examine some Japanese dishes under that we all know you wish to attempt too.

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