By Annette Shailer
Japanese spirit, shochu is shaping up to be the next ‘it’ drink, as its increased global popularity sees it rival favourite Japanese tipple, sake.
After hitting trend status in Japan a few years ago it has been quickly picked-up in the USA and UK and now the shochu phenomenon has rolled into Australia.
Newly-opened Tokonoma in Surry Hills, Sydney has embraced this trend, with an extensive range of shochu available.
Tokonoma’s homemade shochu range has been infused, to create unique flavour combinations, including nashi pear and pistachio, buckwheat, and goji berries and green papaya.
One of the popular shochu drinks at Tokonoma is ‘chu-hais’ which is shochu served with homemade flavoured sodas.
Tokonoma has an impressive cocktail list, with unique offerings such as the Sashini Tini, which is shochu shaken with Tanqueray 10 and ginger liqueur, and garnished with a wasabi dipped skewer of raw salmon.
Tokonoma bar manager, Paul Birtwistle, said that since Tokonoma opened in December there has been a steady increase in customers choosing shochu-based drinks.
“The thing I love about the Australian culture is their willingness to give anything a try and the uptake of shochu has been testament to this,” he said.