With restaurants across the capital offering special Sake Week menus and glasses of this food-friendly drink for free, now is the time to get to know why a growing number of chefs and sommeliers are so excited about this fermented Japanese rice wine and its special place in the world of drinks. If you’re interested in sipping a chilled glass of wine, you will almost certainly get excited by what sake has to offer.
Featured image credit: Sebastian Higgins
From 22 February to 3 March, Sake Week will hit the streets of London giving you the opportunity to try sake – whether for the first time or to expand your experience of a whole range of styles. During these 10 days a selection of some of London’s best-known restaurants will be featuring special Sake Week menus with dishes designed to perfectly pair with different sakes. Not only will this give diners the opportunity to learn more about the joys of sake but, equally excitingly, in every restaurant you will be offered at least one glass of sake for free.
READ MORE: click here to find out which restaurants are participating.
The tiger maki takuwan from Sushisamba is the perfect dish to accompany sake
There’s never been a more exciting time to get involved with sake, with the range available greater than ever, particularly in restaurants. Some of our favourite London restaurants are taking part in Sake Week, which means it’s a win-win foodie experience. For example, why not take this chance to visit any of the following SquareMeal favourites: Sushisamba, Freak Scene, Flesh and Buns Fitzrovia, Roka, Umu, Sake No Hana, Sushi Atelier, Machiya, Koji or Chotto Matte? There’s a whole host more taking part, too – just explore the Sake Week website to see who’s involved.
There's a huge range of sakes out there. Photo credit: Sebastian Higgins
And if you’ve only ever tried sake served hot in a little pot, you’re in for a treat. These days you’re more likely to see sake served chilled in a wine glass. Like wine, sake can be aromatic, refreshing or rich. It can be dry and sharp, floral and smooth, mellow and sweet or nutty and long. And with so many different flavour profiles it matches with a massive list of dishes, which is why more and more people are waking up to the joys of pairing it with some of our favourite food beyond sushi and sashimi – think cheese, pasta, prosciutto or a plate of briny oysters.
We encourage you to get stuck in and try this wonderful drink for yourself.
If you want to know more, take a look at our recent series of features, below, and check out the restaurants that will be taking part.
To read more about how sake is made and the best ways to enjoy it, click here.
To read about how to match sake with sushi, click here.
To read about matching sake and cheese, click here.
To read about pairing sake and prosciutto, click here.
To read more about sake and seafood, click here.