All About Saké

By Gayot Editors

Saké, the Japanese alcoholic beverage made from fermented rice, has steadily become a staple in American restaurants, bars and home liquor cabinets. Often erroneously referred to as “rice wine,” sakés can be sipped cold, warm or hot.

It can be paired with many dishes other than sushi. Find out more about sake with GAYOT’s reviews and features.

Guide to Saké Varieties

Depending on how it’s produced, saké can be just as different as wine varieties. Sip your way from fruity and floral to cloudy and creamy with our informative saké variety guide.

Saké Features & Reviews

1. Hakutsuru Superior Junmai Ginjo

Hakutsuru junmai saké

The Junmai Ginjo is brewed with natural spring water and has a silky, smooth body with notes of flower. It is best paired with sashimi, pastrami and olives.

Official website

2. Hakutsuru Sho-Une Junmai Dai-Ginjo

Hakutsuru shoune saké

This Junmai Dai-Ginjo is a crisp sake with flavor notes of nectarine, vanilla and pear. The smooth body and clean finish pair well with seafood dishes.

Official website

3. Kiku-Masamune Kaho-Gura Junmai Dai-Ginjo

Kiku asamane saké

Founded in 1659, Kiku-Masamune Sake Brewing Company still uses the ancient Kimoto method for producing sake. The Kaho-Gura Junmai Dai-Ginjo is a balanced brew with a sweet aroma and a smooth, mellow finish of pear, honey and rice pudding.

Official website

4. Takatenjin Soul of the Sensei

Takatenjin soul of sensei saké

Brewed in memory of Toji Shokichi Hase, a noted saké maker who spent 40 years working at the same brewery, this special Junmai-Daiginjo blend boasts aromas of honey and grainy rice. It is rich on the palate, with a gentle sweetness and mouthwatering acidity that imparts a dry, spicy finish.

5. Tentaka Kuni Hawk in the Heavens

Tentaka Junmai saké

Brewed using water from the region’s natural underground springs, Hawk in the Heavens is a crisp junmai sake with herbaceous flavors that linger on the palate.