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Shochu Landing in Hollywood

By August 17, 2017 at 12:22 am

Sake is familiar to you, of course,  and so is sashimi - but how about shochu? You are not alone, rest assured; most people are not sure what that is - unless you happen to drink sake every so often. Right, shochu and sake are both popular liquors in Japan - it's only that sake is woven into traditional Japanese cuisine and shochu is rather multifaceted in its utility often offered in a variety of cocktails.

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Now, it occurred one day to a local brewery in Kyushu why not promote shochu in Hollywood - the home of motion pictures. Why not have a shot in any one of those Hollywood movies of a character with a glass of shochu with beaming smile? 

This brewery in Miyazaki, Kyushu, sent its president to Los Angeles a while back with a mission to introduce shochu to film makers in Holywood and restaurant owners in its vicinity. JETRO, Japan External Trade Organization, is behind this and hosted August 3 an event at the official residence of Consul General there.

The event was memorable in that the representatives of a total of eleven breweries stood behind President Tadashi Yanagida of the Miyazaki brewery and his partner in Kagoshima to meet and entertain some 200 local guests.

Shochu is not yet as popular as sake and "we challenge a step at a time" says Yanagida. A local film maker can't say when and how shochu can make its debut on the screen but "this certainly is a good way as a starter", says he.

According to JETRO, Japan exported over 5.1 billion yen of Japanese sake to the US last year against shochu 350 million yen or thereabouts. Governor Junji Kouno of Miyazaki pledges his efforts to promote shochu first in California, the home of American food culture, and then to the rest of the country.

Last year, 1.466 billion yen worth of shochu was exported worldwide - 15% less than in 2012. The event in Hollywood is thus part of the comprehensive drive to zoom up shochu's overall popularity. (Nathan Shiga) 

Source: NHK

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