Our Sake Department

Whether you are knowledgeable about sake and other Japanese beverages, or just learning, you’ll enjoy browsing in the sake department at Tensuke Market. We carry many kinds of sake, shochu, Japanese beer and wine. The selection ranges from the everyday to the top-of-the-line. Our staff will be happy to guide you with your choices.

Sake at Tensuke Market

Tensuke Market has a wonderful selection of Japanese sake at reasonable prices. People travel from all over Ohio and even other states for our sake department. We carry the highest quality sake for your special occasions and as a gift for the connoisseur.

We also sell special appetizers that traditionally accompany sake, called otsumami. We suggest you complete your sake gathering with a sake bottle and cup set, available at Tensuke Market and Hana Gifts.   You can purchase sake at Tensuke Market every day, and after 11:00 am on Sundays.

Types of Sake

 There are different types of Japanese sake. This list may help you understand what kind of sake you are tasting or buying, and help you determine your own likes and dislikes. Within each type there are also many variations of flavor.

Junmai Pure Sake - Rice, Koji, Water and Yeast. No distilled alcohol added. Rice polished at least 25%.

Honjozo Pure Sake + addition of brewer’s alcohol. Rice polished at least 25%.

Ginjo Either Junmai (no alcohol added) or Honjozo (alcohol added). Rice polished at least 40%. Dai-Ginjo Either Junmai (no alcohol added) or Honjozo (alcohol added). Rice polished at least 50%. Namazake Special 5th designation for unpasteurized sake; incorporates all 4 above.

Nigorizake Nigorizake is a variety of sake, an alcoholic beverage produced from rice, its name translates roughly to "cloudy" due to its appearance.

Japanese Sake


Japanese Beer

Plum Wine and more

Japanese Sake

There are two basic types of sake:

futsū-shu (普通酒) and tokutei meishō-shu (特定名称酒).

Futsū-shu, "ordinary sake," is the equivalent of table wine and accounts for the majority of sake produced.

Tokutei meishō-shu, "special designation sake," refers to premium sakes distinguished by the degree to which the rice is polished and the added percentage of brewer's alcohol or the absence of such additives.

The Three Types of Special Designation Sake

Honjōzō-shu (本醸造酒), in which a slight amount of brewer's alcohol is added to the sake before pressing, in order to extract extra flavors and aromas from the mash. This term was created in the late 1960s to distinguish it, a premium sake, from cheaply made liquors to which large amounts of distilled alcohol were added simply to increase volume. Sake with this designation must be made with no more than 116 liters of pure alcohol added for every 1,000 kilograms of rice.

Junmai-shu (純米酒), "pure rice sake," made from only rice, water and kōji, with no brewer's alcohol or other additives. Before 2004, the Japanese government mandated that junmai-shu must be made from rice polished down to 70% or less of its original weight, but that restriction has been removed.

Ginjō-shu (吟醸酒), made from rice polished to 60% or less of its original weight. Sake made from rice polished to 50% or lower is called daiginjō-shu (大吟醸酒).

The term junmai can be added to ginjō or daiginjō, resulting in junmai ginjō and junmai daiginjō. However, as distilled alcohol is added in small amounts to ginjō and daiginjō to heighten the aroma, not to increase volume, a junmai daiginjō is not necessarily a better product than a daiginjō made with brewer's alcohol.

In addition to "ordinary" sake and the special designations, there are many more types of sake.

Mild & Tasty

Extra Dry Sake

Nigori Sake

Nigori or Nigorizake

Nigori (or nigorizake) is a variety of sake. Its name translates roughly to "cloudy" due to its appearance. Normal sake is usually filtered to remove grain solids left behind after the fermentation process, however nigori sake remains unfiltered, resulting in a far cloudier drink.

Nigori sake is generally the sweetest of all sakes, with a fruity scent and a mild flavor, making a great drink to complement spicy foods or as a dessert wine. Before serving, the bottle must be shaken properly to mix the sediments with the sake, to obtain the full range of flavor and its "signature look". It is advised that it be served well-chilled, storing it in an ice bucket to keep it from warming up between servings. It is also recommended, as with most sakes, to consume the entire bottle once opened as it begins to oxidize, altering its flavor.


Shochu is a Japanese clear distilled spirit similar to vodka. The main difference between sake and shochu is that sake is brewed, whereas shochu is distilled. Shochu translates to "fiery liquor" in Japanese kanji characters. It can be enjoyed straight, on the rocks with a squeeze of lemon, mixed with hot or cold water, with tea, or in a mixed drink.

In Japan shochu is often mixed with hot water with salty ume-plums, or mixed with oolong tea and fruit juices such as orange, peach and grapefruit.

Health conscious consumers prefer shochu over other types of beverage alcohol because of its low calories. (about 15 - 20 cal. per ounce) By law, the alcohol content of Shochu must be 45 percent or less.

There are two main types of shochu: Otsurui and Korui. Korui shochu is distilled several times and usually consumed in cocktails. Otsurui is distilled only once, leaving a distinctive smell of the source ingredient. This type of shochu is often enjoyed on the rocks and is becoming increasingly popular in Japan.

Today shochu cocktails or "Chu-Hai" canned cocktails are sold virtually everywhere in Japan, from a street vending machine to a 24-hour convenient store, or at a subway kiosk. Chu-Hai drinks come with the variety of flavors such as grapefruit, lemon, lime, peach, strawberry, plum and many more.

Kinza No Suzume

Barley Shochu

"Japanese Vodka"

Shochu at Tensuke

Japanese Beer As Japan entered the Meiji period in the late 1860s, a long period of isolationism was ended and Japan began adopting many Western customs, styles and tastes including the making of beer. Today beer is the most popular alcoholic beverage in Japan even surpassing sake. Many Japanese people brew their own beer, and Japan also has three major breweries. The three major breweries are Sapporo, Asahi and Kirin, while small local breweries supply distinct tasting beers. At Tensuke, our selection of Japanese beer includes: Asahi Super Dry Kirin Ichiban Shibori Kirin Light Sapporo Draft Beer Orion Draft Beer Here’s a little tip: In Japan, it is considered customary when drinking with a friend or colleague to pour some of your beer for them first. Enjoy!

Kirin Beer

Japanese Beer

Sweet & Aromatic

Plum Wine (Umeshu)

Plum Wine (Ume Shu) Plum wine is a rich, sweet and aromatic plum wine suitable as an aperitif. The plum flavor used for these products are based on "Ume", a special plum cultivated in Japan which is very tart in flavor . It is made from premium white wine with natural plum flavor.

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