What type of food pairs well with sake? The obvious answer may be Japanese, but it’s time to broaden your horizon. Sake is just as versatile as wine, whisky, and beer and, in fact, goes extremely well with food from all over the world.

The fact that most sake labels are written in Japanese can make sake pairing a difficult process, especially since there are so many styles and varieties to choose from. But, we’ve created a simple sake pairing guide, so that the next time you go to a BBQ, host a pizza party, or order-in your favorite Pad Thai, you can bring something new to the table (literally).

American food – Daishinshu NAC Junmai Daiginjo

  • Produced in Nagano
  • Brewery: Daishinshu
  • Interesting point: terroir-driven sake
  • Tasting notes: puffed rice, maitake mushroom, round

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Italian food – Chikusen ‘Awa’ Junmai Ginjo Muroka Nama Genshu
  • Produced in Hyogo
  • Brewery: Chikusen
  • Interesting point: not filtered through charcoal; unpasteurized and undiluted
  • Tasting notes: funky, savory, vibrant

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South Asian food – Ohmine Junmai Daiginjo

  • Produced in Yamaguchi
  • Brewery: Ohmine
  • Interesting point: brewery closed for 50 years; reopened in 2010
  • Tasting notes: orange blossom, strawberry, candied citrus

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Chinese food – Yoshimura Junmai Daiginjo Muroka

  • Produced in Wakayama
  • Brewery: Kurumazaka
  • Interesting point: not filtered through charcoal
  • Tasting notes: ginger, honeydew, grass jelly

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Sweets/desserts – Sunday’s Junmai Nigori

  • Produced in Hyogo
  • Brewery: Rairaku
  • Interesting point: bottled on lees
  • Tasting notes: toasted coconut, vanilla, white flowers

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Did you know you could study to be a Master of Sake? Read more here.

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