How to enjoy shochu with a variety of different foods?

There are suitable foods to enjoy with shochu that are made from a variety of ingredients.

Shochu and Food Pairing Chart

Basic Rules and Suggestions of Matching Foods

  • Imo, Sweet Potato Shochu
    [Matching Foods] Pork chops, Margarita pizza, Fried tempura
    Imo shochu has a sweet aroma and taste, the kind that goes well with fatty dishes or fried foods. It is not only intended for Japanese food, but also nicely complements rich Chinese food or Pizza with lots of cheese.
  • Mugi, Barley Shochu
    [Matching Foods] Smoked salmon, Caviar, Sliced pork with lemon sauce
    Mugi shochu has a very clean, fresh taste. Technically this shochu goes well with any kind of food, but it is better enjoyed with a simple dish as opposed to an oily one. The aroma of barley enhances vegetable saute.
  • Kome, Rice Shochu
    [Matching Foods] Sashimi, miso marinated trout, tofu steak
    Kome shochu originally has a umami (flavor.) Kome shochu goes with any kind of food. It is especially good with sashimi which is an uncooked, sensitive dish. It can also be enjoyed with dishes that are made from rice.
  • Kokuto, Sugarcane Shochu
    [Matching Foods] Yakitori (grilled chicken), primavera pasta, mozzarella salad
    Kokuto shochu is made with sugarcane and can taste a little fruity. The fragrance of kokuto shochu is similar to that of sweet syrup, but the taste is very plain and mild rather than overwhelmingly sweet. This particular taste can draw out the original food flavors. It is very good with soy sauce based dishes that have a slight sweetness. 
  • Awamori, Thai Rice Shochu
    [Matching Foods] Pork chop, Lasagna, Banana fritter
    Awamori has a particular aroma and rich flavor that goes well with spicy or heavy foods. A cheese or creamy dish can also be enjoyed with Awamori shochu.
  • Soba, Buckwheat) Shochu
    [Matching Foods] Penne arrabiata , fried oysters, meat balls
    The characteristics of soba shochu are very mild and clear-cut, but at the same time a little bit bitter. This shochu can be enjoyed with slightly spicy foods or juicy meats.