Syochu is Japanese main distilled alcohol.
It is a liquor that brewage is distilled.Its another name is “spirits”. Liquor is the thing that water, alcohol and other ingredients are mixed. The boiling point of water is 100℃, but the one of alcohol is about 78.325℃, lower than water. Alcohol evaporate earlier when liquor is heated. Liquor of higher alcohol percentage can be made by gathering steam and liquefy it. The liquor made by this method is spirits. Its feature is high alcohol percentage.
Not only Japanese shochu but also various spirits are made around the world.
Shochu is classified into Ko, Otsu group according to the kind and alcohol percentage. Group Ko shochu means that its alcohol percentage is less than 36%. It is made from molasses and grains by continuous distiller. Its features are solid flavor and color. White liquor that is used to make fruit wine is group Ko shochu.
Group Otsu shochu means that its alcohol percentage is 45% or less. It is made from grains, potatoes and buckwheat by single type distiller. Its feature is the difference of taste depend on ingredient. It is Japanese own one and also called “real low-class distilled spirits”. Awamori, a kind of distilled spirits of Okinawa, is also group Otsu shochu. The one that has rich taste of ingredients is popular recently.
Various local clops are used as ingredients in each region.
SHOCHU - The Japanese Distilled Spirits
SHOCHU,pronounced “Show-chew”, is a colorless, Japanese spirit made from high starch grains and vegetables such as rice, millet, barley, buckwheat, molasses, corn and sweet potatoes.
When scripted in Chinese characters,its literal translation is “fiery sprits”, which indicates SHOCHU’S high-level of potency as an alcohol beverage. SHOCHU is a distilled sprit.
SHOCHU is to Sake, what Chinese Maotai is to the Laochu, and what brandy is to wine.
The origin of SHOCHU can be traced back to the 14th century when Awamori, its primitive version, was produced in southern Japan and Okinawa using a recipe imported from Thailand.
During the 17th and 18th centurily, however, SHOCHU was primarily used as a disinfectant for medical purposes.
Honkaku Shochu goes through a single distilling, where the flavor and aromatic integrity is kept intact, coming from its originak ingredient most notably steamed rice, barley, buckwheat, sugar cane and sweet potatoes.
The result is a brew laced with a delicate aroma and flavor, much like tequila and gin.
To fully enjoy the subtle underlining flavor offerings, Single Distillation Shochu is most often served plain, on the rocks or hot, Most single Distillation Shochu range from 50 to 80 proof (alc.%25 to40).
Shochu and Sake are teaditional Japanese beverages,both with a history dating back many centuries.
Although Shochu is distilled, and Sake is brewed like beer and wine, the two resemble each other in several important points.
One of these is that both Shochu and Sake depend on Koji to convert starches in to glucose, and after that, yeast is introduced to convert glucose into alcohol.
This is a process so unique that it can achieve the highest naturally brewed alcohol content in the world.
TheKoji, or aspergillus oryzae, at the heart of Shochu and Sake production comprises of microbes resembling beneficial bacteria contained in the production of such Western foods as cheese and yogurt.
But Koji microbes, which thrive in hot, humid conditions, have traditionally been used only in Asia.
Often referred to as the “Oriental magic”, Koji is a gift of nature that holds quite a key role in the Japanese culinary culture including the production of such staples as Shoyu (Soy Sauce) and Miso (Soybean Paste).
Koji is alining organism.
Special Thanks：Houzan｜Nishi Shuzou