Okinawa 2001"(20-year old sake / 43% alcohol by volume) is a long-term barrel-aged Awamori (liqueur) sold by Kumesen Shuzo in Naha City. In this post, I'd like to share with you some notable points about this special aged old sake!
When Awamori is aged in oak barrels, it takes on an amber color and a unique aroma.
The longer Awamori is stored in oak barrels, the more it loses its sharp edges and the mellower it becomes. However, the longer it is stored in barrels, the darker the color becomes, and under the current liquor tax law, it cannot be shipped as "Awamori. Although it had matured as old sake, it could not be marketed as Awamori and slept in the barrel. However, this has allowed more than 20 years to pass, and the result is a more aromatic old sake.
If it were decolorized, it could be shipped as Awamori again, but in order to keep the original flavor, it was applied for as a "liqueur" without decolorization, and the long-term barrel-aged 20-year old sake "Okinawa 2001" was born!
Kumeisen Brewery's barrel-stored Awamori is best known for "Yataru Zou" (25 degrees alcohol), but there is also "Kumeisen 43 degrees", which was released in 2001 as a limited edition, and "Okinawa", a 50 degrees Awamori liqueur. Following that, "Okinawa 2001" is an old sake that has been aged for more than 20 years.
Okinawa 2001" is a blend of two types of raw Awamori sake, one with a sharp taste stored in barrels in Inner Mongolia, and the other with a rich taste from Okinawa Prefecture (both more than 20 years old).
The best way to drink it is on the rocks or straight to enjoy the original flavor of "Okinawa 2001". I also asked Mr. Koji Higa, the manager of the members-only Awamori bar "Awamori Soko", how he recommends drinking it!
It's a royal road, but I still recommend drinking it straight. It's a simple pairing that complements the spiciness of the alcohol with something sweet, so why not try a marriage of chocolate or sweetened cacao beans with jam to savor the taste of old sake?
Okinawa 2001" is perfect as an after-dinner drink or as an accompaniment to a special time. Why don't you enjoy the mellow taste of over 20 years old sake in the comfort of your living room?
To purchase barrel-aged Awamori "Okinawa 2001", click here.