Sake and Shochu Gumi

New shochu are coming in thick and fast and we're working hard to stay on top of it for our shelves and for our quarterly Shochu Gumi club. The quicker we wrangle in these beauties, the sooner they will find their way to you. We hope this is an indication that shochu is beginning to have its day!

Those of us who have enjoyed shochu in Japan (or those of us who commit hours of time checking out bars and liquor stores in Kyushu on Instagram) will no doubt recognize the iconic branding of Yamatozakura. Master Distiller Tekkan Wakamatsu runs one of the smallest distilleries in Kagoshima, specializing in white koji and clay-pot fermentations which ultimately lead to very drinkable, high-quality shochus that are affordable and great with all types of food.

Read about Ian's visit to Yamatozakura here!

Wakamatsu has a small team of local obaasan and ojiisan (grandmas and grandpas) who deftly cut and clean the sweet potatoes by hand and assist in steaming, bottling, and labeling the shochu. Follow their Instagram here for a glimpse into their Kagoshima shochu-stylings. You may also get to catch the occasional live-stream of their shochu-making process come distilling season! We hope you enjoy these shochus in this special Two Pack as we celebrate their American debut.

Catch Stephen Lyman's typical morning at Yamatozakura Distillery on the Japan Distilled podcast.

Yamatozakura Sweet Potato Shochu

  • Distilled in Kagoshima, Japan by Yamatozakura Shuzo
  • Distilled from Koganesengan imo (sweet potato) and kome (rice)
  • ABV 24% / Koji: white (rice) / Distillation: atmospheric
  • Kame (clay pot) fermented and matured
  • 25.4 oz (750 ml)  

This is Yamatozakura's flagship shochu brand, synonymous with craft Satsuma Shochu (Kagoshima sweet potato shochu). Distilled from koganesengan sweet potatoes, this workhorse of a shochu is light and easy, crisp and mineral-forward with mellow tropical notes and powdered sugar. Think Akarui Nouson or Tenguzakura. Enjoy this any way you like (rocks, oyuwari, mizuwari, soda) with everything under the sun, from yakitori to a cheeseburger.

Yamatozakura Beni Imo Sweet Potato Shochu

  • Distilled in Kagoshima, Japan by Yamatozakura Shuzo
  • Distilled from Beni Satsuma imo (red sweet potato) and kome (rice)
  • ABV 24% / Koji: white (rice) / Distillation: atmospheric
  • Kame (clay pot) fermented and matured
  • 25.4 oz (750 ml)  

Yamatozakura's premium brand uses local Kagoshima beni imo (purple sweet potatoes) to impart bright fruity notes and luxurious texture to this shochu. Get notes of blackberry, maple, and secret purple fruits while enjoying this on the rocks or oyuwari. Contrast the complex sweetness of this shochu with cuts of your favorite sashimi. 

Bonus photo of us with Tekkan Wakamatsu, toji and owner of Yamatozakura Brewery and his wife Ranko at the Kagoshima airport in 2017!

Photo of Wakamatsu at the distillery courtesy of Wakamatsu. 

Yamatozakura Pack Features:

    Please note: We can not deliver alcoholic products to SD, UT, MS, AL, VT, KY.