Sake is an alcoholic beverage made by fermenting rice. Different brewing processes produce a multitude of varieties. A traditional pub in Japan to drink sake is known as an izakaya. Sake can be served in different ways depending if it is ordered at an izakaya or enjoyed at a friend's home. When sharing sake with a friend, the traditional custom is to pour for each other. However, it may be best to let someone pour their own cups and only drink what they are comfortable consuming. Sake can be served at room temperature, chilled, warm, or hot. Different serving temperatures depend on the type of sake and preference of the consumer. Some of the more common ways to serve sake are listed below.
Traditional Large Sake Cup (Guinomi)
A large sake cup, known as a guinomi, is commonly used for sake drinking. They are made of materials such as wood, clay, ceramic, and glass. It is larger than an ochoko and shot glass.
Traditional Small Sake Cup (Ochoko)
A smaller sake cup is known as a ochoko. The main difference between a ochoko and guinomi is their size.
Sake Serving Pitcher (Tokkuri)
The pitcher commonly used to pour sake into a ochoko or guinomi is known as a tokkuri. The tokkuri can be used to serve sake at various temperatures. It is typically made of ceramic or other materials that can hold hot liquids.
Square Wooden Box (Masu)
Sake can be poured in a square wooden box called a masu. You can drink straight from the masu. Also, you can set a tall cup in it and drink from that instead. When pouring sake in the cup inside the masu, you can over pour to have sake flow into the masu. Sake that has overflowed can be drunk from the masu or poured back into the tall cup once the sake inside the tall cup has been consumed.
Glassware (Wine Glass, Shot Glass, Other)
Various types of glassware can be used to enjoy sake. Wine glasses are a good option to show off the color and aroma of sake. Shot glasses can serve as a alternative to other cups. There are other types of glassware that sake can be served in as seen below.
Sake can be consumed in a multitude of fun and interesting ways. Regardless of how it is served, the most important part of drinking sake is enjoying the experience with others.