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Futsu-shu Sake, what is it?

If you have ever made sake at home from rice that you bought from your local supermarket you have either made Futsu-shu Sake or Junmai-sake. Futsu-shu sake is what "Table wine" is to the rest of the world. By definition, Futsu-shu sake is brewed with non-premium rice that hasn't been milled more than the average 30% standard polished rate. According to the National Research Institute of Brewing of Japan, "The bulk of the sake produced in Japan is classified as Futsu-shu". Most Futsu-shu sake has Jozo, or "brewer's alcohol" added after completion of fermentation to bring out certain tastes, and to increase yield.

When you brew sake for the first time in your kitchen, you don't want to spend a lot of money on premium rice. Learning the process and creating a working recipe that yields the ABV percentage and taste you are looking for is more important at first than trying to make premium sake.

On a separate note, if you do not want to use brewer's alcohol you can still make Junmai-shu sake, (no additives) and still use the rice you bought from the store, (not instant rice) until you become better at your process.

Like all hobbies and/or small businesses you have to learn to walk before you can run. This sake may be the cheapest, but your starting budget will thank you as it affords screw-ups and restarts.

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