Friday, February 25, 2011

A Little Bit About: Sake

Here is a little post that I found on Serious Eats. It is about proper Sake drinking. I decided to compile this post and some other information that I have gathered, into one informative post about SAKE!!

So, here goes:

A Little Bit About: Sake

Juyondai - fruity and fragrant
Isojiman - rich
Kubota - light and dry
Koshi no Kanbai - light and dry
Michizakari - full and dry
Kikusui - light and dry
Hakkaizan - slightly full and fry
Urakasumi - balanced
Koro - fruity and fragrant
Kokuryu - earthy and rich
Denshu - rice-laden and rich
(From Sake-World)

The best glassware for drinking Sake is actually a wine glass. No need for the fancy little Sake cups that are abundant in Japanese shops. A wine glass that is already in your pantry is even better! Why is a wine glass better? Because it gives the Sake room to release its aroma. Once it is poured, you should check out the Sake's color. It should be clear, but it may have some pale yellow or even greenish hues. Once the color turns brown, or tan, its past its prime. It should also be free of floating debris, unless it is a specific type (nigori) which is meant to be cloudy.

After the Sake is poured and the color is inspected, give it a few swirls in the glass and take a whiff. You should look out for fruity, floral, and earthy scents. If you smell burnt or musty in your Sake, it has gone bad. Some Sake (rustic) has smoky and rice-centric aromas while others (unpasteurized) are more fruity and fresh. There are 3 different aroma stages in drinking Sake. The first is "uwadachi-ka" or "initial smell" (fruity) which is what you smell before tasting. The second is "fukumi-ka" or "new fragrances" (bitterness) which are the smells that you breathe in while sipping. Last is "modori-ka" or "finish" (peppery) which are the more subtle smells present after sipping.

The flavor of the Sake should match the aromas. For example, if you smell a mushroom-esque aroma, it should taste earthy. Bad Sake has a sour taste. There are also varying degrees of sweetness present in different types of Sake, as well as Sake's that are more dry on the palate. The texture of the Sake should be light, but there are some that are richer and pack a more powerful punch.

Temperature is a great element to play with while drinking Sake. Start drinking it straight out of the fridge, then slowly sip it every now and then while it comes to room temperature. Pay attention to the flavors and aromas, and how they change. More earthy and richer Sake's tend to stand out more at room temperature, while more fruity ones are better when slightly chilled.

There are some important customs that surround Sake as well. When drinking sake, you should not fill your own cup or glass. It is polite to fill someone else's glass and then they, in turn, fill yours. It is also rude to turn down an initial offering of Sake, if it is offered again, it is now acceptable to say no thank you.

What I learned is that Sake drinking is very similar to wine. There are similar aspects in the the way and process of drinking, like swirling and sniffing, and sipping and temperature. There also variations in flavor depending on the region where the Sake was made, and the rice that was used. Same as with wine and the type of grapes used.

I found all this very interesting and cannot wait to taste my way through some sake in the near future! When I do, I will keep you posted!


Thursday, February 24, 2011

New Toy

So, I have been seeing so many Hipstamatic photos all over Facebook now-a-days. I wanted to replicated that with just as much I downloaded the Poladroid App for Macs. Its pretty cool. Its basic, no fun lenses or effects, just a simple photo like what an old Polaroid would take.

Oh yeah, it makes that oh-so-cool developing sound too!

Here are some samples:


Tuesday, February 22, 2011


Sorry to all my readers for the prolonged absence! I have been shifting my focus from project to project that has been going on in my life right now. I am having an issue deciding on what blogs I want to focus on. I have come to the realization that I can handle a few, if they are managed in an effective way though out the week.

I also missed having a place to share really random things. This was that place. I am calling it my online journal. It is where I can share anything! Crafts, recipes, music, pictures...etc. I need this outlet!

I have been doing a lot! Just not sharing it quite as much. I have not made a lot of new recipes because the hubby and I tried this new Whole 9 30-day Challenge/Paleo diet. It was more for him than me...but there were benefits of it that I liked. It is basically a diet focused on meat, veggies, fruit, and fat. You don't eat anything unnatural, processed, dairy, sugar, and made of corn or HFCS, etc. So it was very basic, but challenging!

I liked that we were not eating pre-processed foods, everything is natural. We at many eggs, bacon, apples, broccoli, chicken, pork, beef, and some seafood. It was a challenge as well! I made my first homemade mayo, and some BBQ sauce. They are both works in progress, but it has really opened my eyes to new ways of making things. Even if there is a little more work involved, it is worth it, just to say I tried!

I have been exploring the island as well! We went to a Dam, a Castle, a really dirty park, and a gorgeous rugged rock cape lookout. I am currently taking a cake decorating class, provided by Wilton, at the local craft store, and I look forward to taking the next lesson in Fondant and Gum paste.

That leads me to my next love! I have started a from-home baking business. It is called Sarah's Sweets & Treats. I do cakes, cupcakes, cookies, and some special requests. It has been a struggle getting my name out there. There are outlets that I cannot use and those that would not be wise to use due to some shady people and what not. So things are a little slow, but I am sure it will progress with time! I have hope! I just need to build my skills (hence the class  :-)

My photography is also getting a work out! After getting my AWESOME camera form my Hubby for X-mas, I have been using it to photograph various things! But, I need to get caught up on my editing, which is proving to be a challenge...I need a place where I can sit for a few hours and work...i am not inspired (or maybe more distracted) at home...I have a few projects that I would like to get printed out and displayed. SOON!

But anywho, just wanted to post a little update! And, no worries, I will be back very soon and on a regular basis!

A lemon cake with lemon glaze

One of the cookies I made in class

A german chocolate cake I made for a friend's husband's birthday

Heart with sprinkles (from cake class) for Valentines Day. I brought this into Hubby's work for the guys to eat!

A glimpse at one of the projects I would like to start....