Sake 101: Introduction | Terms | Grades | Types | Rice & Yeasts | Regions | Articles | Videos

Daiginjo: “Ultra-premium” grade sake; at least 50% of the rice grain milled away.
Futsushu: “Standard” grade sake.
Ginjo: “Premium” grade sake; at least 40% of the rice grain milled away.
Honjozo: "Special" grade sake; at least 30% of the rice grain milled away. Also has added small amount of brewer's alcohol; creates lighter-bodied and more fragrant sakes.
Junmai: “Pure Rice Sake” (no alcohol added); creates fuller-bodied and more acidic sakes.
Karakuchi: Dry sake.
Koji: The mold that converts the rice starch into sugar; an essential element in sake production, managing it is an important part of the toji's job.
Kura: Brewery
Onikoroshi: “Demon Slayer”; refers to very dry sake.
Nama-chozo: Sake that is not pasteurized until bottling; creates zestier sakes.
Nigori: Unfiltered sake with more rice particles; creates a cloudy sake with a distinctive sweet taste. Nihonshu-do: (knee-hohn-shoo-doh) Sake Meter Value; the higher the number the drier the sake.
Seimaibuai: (pronounced say-my-boo-eye) Rice polishing ratio, given as a percentage of the grain remaining, so the lower the number the greater the outer rice grain has been polished away.
Tokubetsu: Indicates special quality.
Toji: Master Brewer