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Perfect Occasions to Serve Sake

Are you looking to enhance your beverage menu for a party or event? Serving sake at gatherings is an excellent way to do so. Whether you’re planning a holiday party, hosting a summer cookout or just relaxing with friends, read on for some ways to celebrate with sake!

What Is Sake?

Sake is a Japanese alcoholic beverage with an alcohol usually between 12% – 16% by volume (ABV) made from fermented rice. It has a light green or yellow color, a slightly sweet taste and mild fruity notes. It comes in a wide range of flavors, sweetness levels and varieties.

There are many types of sake to enjoy, such as:

  • Daiginjo
  • Gingo
  • Honjozo
  • Junmai
  • Muroka
  • Nigori
  • Tokubetsu Junmai

When Should I Serve Sake?

From holidays to dinner parties to a lowkey evening with friends or family, you can serve sake any time you please. There’s no rule as to how lavish or casual the event should be. Traditionally, sake is served during the appetizer portion of a meal, but you can choose to serve your guests sake whenever you please.

What Events Should I Serve Sake at?

Sake is delicious during any season or occasion, but we have a few ideas for serving sake at events to help you out. While you can simply serve sake on its own, consider providing mixers, flavorings and garnishes for guests to make cocktails. This is a fun and tasty way to spruce up your beverage menu, and guests can choose how they’d like to drink their sake.

Check out the seven examples below so you know to which events you should bring sake.

1. New Year’s Eve

What better way to celebrate this holiday than by welcoming the new year with alcohol? While popping open a bottle of bubbly is a signature way to celebrate New Year’s, consider adding some sake to the festivities for a change of pace.

Whether it’s mixing up some sake negroni martinis, sipping a crisp Aperol and sake spritz or enjoying a glass of sake on its own, this drink is a great way to toast the new year with loved ones.

2. Birthdays

Celebrate a friend or family member’s birthday — or your own! — with some delicious sake-inspired mixers. Try choosing cocktails based on their favorite fruits or flavors for a celebration they’ll treasure forever.

While essentially any type of sake cocktail can serve as a birthday drink, here are some ideas:

  • Saketini: If the person you’re celebrating has a simpler taste preference, you can’t go wrong with some classic saketinis. Made from traditional yet timeless Junmai sake and a hint of orange peel, this drink soothes the tastebuds without going overboard on flavor.
  • MIO raspberry float: Because sparkling sake is the perfect celebratory beverage, MIO raspberry floats can be excellent cocktails for birthday parties. All you’ll need are raspberries, mint leaves, vanilla ice cream and MIO sparkling sake to whip up these rich and flavorful cocktails.
  • Coconut nigori: If your friend or family member can’t get enough of coconut, consider serving some coconut nigori cocktails for their birthday. The perfect blend of coconut milk, lime, mint leaves and Sho Chiku Bai sake, this drink is bursting with flavor.

3. Brunch Gatherings

Are you hosting a breakfast or brunch gathering at your home? Sake-inspired mimosas are a great way to start the day. While you can’t go wrong with a traditional mimosa with orange juice and sparkling sake, a grapefruit mimosa with ruby red grapefruit juice and sparkling sake adds a fun twist to your beverage menu. Consider serving both options if desired.

4. Summer Cookouts

Ring in the warm summer season with some crisp and refreshing sake cocktails. Ideal for a cookout, pool party, barbecue or another summer gathering, ice-cold sake is the perfect way to beat the heat. Here are some ideas for summer sake cocktails to accompany your drink menu:

  • Pineapple sake margarita: With tangy pineapple, sweet orange juice and chilled Junmai sake, pineapple sake margaritas are bursting with summer flavors.
  • Peach sake spritz: Combining peach-flavored sake, club soda, lemon juice and MIO sparkling sake creates an ultra-refreshing beverage. Serve up some tasty peach sake spritzes for your next summer gathering.
  • Mango mojito: A classic and beloved fruit flavor, mango mojitos are another great way to celebrate summer. Mango-flavored nigori lends itself to fresh lime juice and cool mint leaves for an irresistible drink. For an extra fun twist, this cocktail swaps out traditional club soda for rich ginger beer.

5. Holiday Parties

Sake is an excellent addition to the beverage menu at your holiday party. Try incorporating peppermint, vanilla, cranberry, gingerbread or other wintery flavors into your sake drinks. Are you looking for a hot, sweet beverage to warm up your guests? One of the best things about sake is its versatility — you can serve it at any temperature you desire. 

For the perfect winter beverage, serve some nigori matcha white hot chocolate to your guests. Matcha and white chocolate create a rich balance of flavor on their own, but adding nigori sake to the mix makes it all the more delicious.

Perfect for fall and winter, spiked apple cocktails with sake could be another terrific addition to your holiday party. The ideal blend of chilled apple cider, cinnamon, sliced apple and Junmai sake, this drink is the epitome of warm winter flavors.

6. Dinner Parties

Spice up your dinner parties and special at-home meal occasions by serving sake to your guests. By setting up a mini bar in your kitchen or dining room with some mixers, guests can have the option of enjoying sake on its own or creating cocktails.

Sake doesn’t only have to be for drinking — you can also use it to cook delicious meals for your dinner party menu. Here are some ways to cook with sake:

  • Use it in a marinade or brine for meat and fish.
  • Splash it into a soup or stew.
  • Steam vegetables, chicken or fish with sake.
  • Cook rice with sake.
  • Mix it into a stir-fry.
  • Bake it into a cake or bread.

Check out our recipes with sake for more inspiration.

7. Casual Nights

Remember that sake isn’t reserved for holidays and elaborate gatherings only. It’s also perfect for just another Friday night — or any other evening for that matter. Take the evening to unwind and mix up tasty sake cocktails for some much-needed downtime.

Browse Sake Online at Takara Sake

If you’re planning to serve sake at your next event, we have a quality selection to choose from at Takara Sake. Whether you’re searching for classic sake, sweet fruit flavors or exotic varieties, we’ll have something to delight your guests and enhance your beverage menu.

Browse our sake products and order yours today!

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