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How to Serve Sake

Sake can be enjoyed in a wide range of vessels!

You may think that the only way to enjoy sake is to drink it from a small sake cup, called an o-choko.

Indeed in many establishments, you will see sake being served this way, particularly outside of Japan. Perhaps in doing so, the whole ritual feels more 'Japanese'.

In fact, there are many ways to drink sake, and many styles of sake are even better suited to wine glasses than an o-choko.

Here are three commonly used vessels for serving sake:

  1. O-choko: this is the traditional serving vessel coming in all shapes, sizes, colors and materials. Being small in size they require frequent refilling, which creates camaraderie.
  2. Wine glasses: white wine glasses are particularly suitable for serving more fragrant styles of sake as they capture the aromas.
  3. Masu: a small box with no lid, made from cypress. Historically used for rice measuring, they were also used for drinking sake on ceremonial occasions.
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