What is Nigori sake? This is a question that many people have asked, and it can be difficult to find a clear answer. Nigori sake is an unfiltered type of sake, and it has a cloudy appearance due to the rice particles that remain in the drink. It is often called “milky” sake due to its distinctive look. Although Nigori sake is not as popular as other types of sake, it has a passionate following among those who enjoy its unique flavor and texture. In this blog post, we will explore the history of Nigori sake and discuss why so many people love it!
The History Of Nigori Sake
Nigori sake has been around for centuries, and its history is closely intertwined with the history of sake itself. Sake is a traditional Japanese drink that has been enjoyed for thousands of years. It is made from rice, water, and koji (a type of fungus), and it undergoes a fermentation process that gives it its unique flavor.
Nigori sake was traditionally made by leaving some of the rice particles in the drink, which gave it its characteristic cloudy sake appearance.
However, Nigori sake fell out of favor in the 18th century when clear sake became more popular among the Japanese elite.
Nigori sake continued to be produced on a small scale, but it was not widely available until the 20th century. In recent years, Nigori sake has experienced a resurgence in popularity, and it is now enjoyed by sake lovers all over the world.
What Makes Nigori Sake So Special?
So, what makes Nigori sake so special? One of the things that set Nigori sake apart from other types of sake is its flavor. The unfiltered rice gives Nigori sake a slightly sweet taste, and its creamy texture is unlike anything else. Nigori sake is also lower in alcohol than other types of sake, which makes it a great choice for those who want to enjoy a refreshing drink without getting too drunk.
How Nigori Cloudy Sake Is Made?
The Nigori brewing process is similar to the regular sake brewing process, but there are a few key differences. First of all, Nigori brewers use a type of rice called mochi rice, which is a short-grain rice that has been polished to remove the bran.
After the rice has been polished, it is washed and soaked in water for several hours. The next step is to add koji (a type of fungus) to the mixture, which will help with the fermentation process.
Once the koji has been added, the mixture is left to ferment for several weeks. During this time, the Nigori brewers will periodically check on the progress of fermentation and make adjustments as necessary to create this cloudy sake.
Once fermentation is complete, the Ngori cloudy sake is ready to be bottled and enjoyed!
What Does Nigori Sake Taste Like?
Nigori sake has a unique flavor that is unlike any other sake. Its creamy texture and slightly sweeter taste make it a refreshing choice for those who want to enjoy a light drink. Nigori sake has lower alcohol content than other types of sake, which makes it a great choice for those who want to avoid getting too drunk.
What Food Pairs With Nigori Sake?
Nigori sake pairs well with a variety of different foods. From spicy foods to desserts, Its light and refreshing feel, as well as its natural sweetness, goes well with sushi, sashimi, and other Japanese dishes. Nigori sake is also a great choice for those who want to enjoy a light drink with their meal.
What Does Sake Production Laws Say About Nigori Sake?
Nigori sake is subject to the same production laws as other types of sake. These laws dictate that Nigori unfiltered sake must be made from rice, water, and koji (a type of fungus). Nigori sake must also undergo a fermentation process, and it must be produced, bottled, and labeled according to Japanese government law.
How To Serve And Store Nigori Sake?
Nigori sake should be served chilled in a small glass. It can be stored in the fridge for up to six months after opening.
Can You Use Nigory Sake In Cocktails?
Yes! Nigori sake can be used in a variety of different cocktails. Its light and refreshing feel pairs well with a variety of different ingredients. Nigori unfiltered sake cocktails are becoming increasingly popular among bartenders and mixologists all over the world.
Let’s Walk Through Some Notable Nigori Sake Brands
Now that we’ve answered some of the most frequently asked questions about Nigori sake, let’s walk through some of the most notable Nigori sake brands.
Dassai is one of the most popular Nigori sake brands in Japan. Dassai Nigori sake is made from Yamada Nishiki rice that has been polished to remove 50% of the bran. This Nigori unfiltered sake has a light and refreshing feel with notes of citrus and melon.
Kikusui is another popular Nigori sake brand from Japan. Kikusui Nigori sake is made from Gohyakumangoku rice that has been polished to remove 60% of the bran. This Nigori cloudy sake has a creamy feel with floating rice solids and a slightly sweet note.
Kubota is a Nigori sake brand that is known for its high-quality Nigori unfiltered sake. Kubota Nigori sake is made from Yamada Nishiki steamed rice that has been polished to remove 40% of the bran. This Nigori sake has a smooth texture and slightly sweet notes with notes of pineapple and banana.
Tamanohikari is a Nigori sake brand that produces both Nigori unfiltered sake and regular filtered sake. Tamanohikari Nigori sake is made from Yamada Nishiki rice that has been polished to remove 60% of the bran. This Nigori cloudy sake has a creamy texture and a mildly sweet taste.
Finally, we have Sho Chiku Bai, which is one of the most popular sake brands in the world. Sho Chiku Bai Nigori style sake is made from premium short-grain rice that has been polished to remove 70% of the bran. This Nigori unfiltered sake has a creamy texture and a slightly sweet aroma with notes of coconut and mango.