Raise Your Glasses -- Try Cocktails Based on Japan's National Alcoholic Spirits: Winning Entries at Shochu & Awamori Cocktail Competition

TOKYO, Nov. 9, 2018 /PRNewswire/ --The Japan Sake and Shochu Makers Association hosted the first-ever nationwide cocktail competition using "honkaku" (authentic) shochu and awamori, which represent Japan's national alcoholic spirits, on October 17, 2018, at Asakusa View Hotel in Tokyo.

A total of 20 cocktails based on honkaku shochu and awamori (a distilled spirit indigenous to Okinawa), both rich in flavor and taste unique to their ingredients, were nominated for the event as they were seen to epitomize traditional Japanese aesthetics. Bartenders selected by the 12 branches of the Hotel Barmen's Association, Japan, gathered from around the country to show their stuff in the competition, which combined a written examination and demonstration of skills.

Yumi Miyata survived the gauntlet to win the Grand Prix as well as the Technical Prize with her original cocktail "Hannari (elegant)." "I tried hard to concoct a cocktail that makes the most of shochu. To be rewarded this way makes me feel grateful," Ms. Miyata said. "I guess I am now able to recommend Japan's kokushu (national alcoholic spirits) to people from abroad with much confidence." She reaffirmed her resolve to serve honkaku shochu, awamori and other Japanese spirits to overseas visitors to Japan, who are expected to swell in numbers due to the upcoming Tokyo Olympics.

(Image: https://kyodonewsprwire.jp/img/201811070091-O1-4aBmm1TH)

Ms. Miyata's original cocktail "Hannari" is a cocktail with a smack of tenderness, with its name derived from the word "hananari (attractive)." It uses liqueur made from herbal elderflower and is spiked with shochu made from highly fragrant Japanese sweet potato to create a soft taste in pale white color blessed with feminine brilliance and quality.

You may visit the Japanican booking website to reserve hotels where you can enjoy these cocktails entered in the competition.