Awamori is a Japanese national strong alcoholic beverage distilled from long grain rice raw materials. Not be confused with sake. Sake is a product of fermentation of raw rice, and Awamori that is distillation. Also not to be confused with Awamori Shochu (experts believe that Awamori is a kind of Shochu). The most widespread drink Awamori got on the archipelago of Okinawa. The strength of the drink varies from 30 to 60% vol. Of special value are varieties of Awamori, which is subjected to prolonged exposure.
The name of the drink comes from the Japanese words "ava" and "Mori", meaning, respectively, "foam" and "filled". According to the most common version, this name is associated with abundant foaming, arising in the process of distillation of rice raw materials. According to another hypothesis, we are talking about the foam formed in the course practised in the old days the technique of measuring the strength of the drink, when it from a great height is poured in a thin stream into the Cup. The third version was the name of the drink comes from the words ava - brown rice and "Mora" component for the preparation of black yeast.
Production technology: For Awamori choose only long-grain rice, which is crushed and soaked in warm water. The water is drained and the rice is steamed for about an hour. Especially the production of Awamori can be considered a special local yeast, which has a black color and contain a lot of citric acid. The raw material with yeast wanders for 12 hours in the rice cooker, and then it is moved to the pallets in which it wanders for two weeks. The resulting substrate is distilled and a transparent liquid is obtained, which can already be consumed. In order to taste the Awamori was better, it is kept in ceramic vessels, which may last for different periods of time. There are varieties that can withstand six months, and there are those that are aged for years. The latter are called "Kusa", which means "sustained". Modern trade law allows you to assign a label "kusu" only those instances of Awamori, in which at least 51 % of the liquid was aged for three years or more, as often, in order to improve profitability, and aged Awamori is mixed with a fresh drink. Strong varieties of Awamori called "handshake", which translates as "blossoming flowers". Awamori doing with spices. Add in him ginseng. You can find this with the canned drink inside the bottle is a snake.
The history of Awamori making in Okinawa has more than 600 years, and the method of manufacture, and to this day has not undergone any significant changes. However, it is known that the technology of its production was borrowed by Okinawans in the XV century from the Peoples of Southeast Asia, in particular, from Siam from the Thais who supplied long grain rice varieties to the archipelago. On the territory of the archipelago at that time was a state called Ryukyu, for the kings of which produced the drink. At that time the right to produce Awamori was officially assigned to thirty producers, many of which are descendants of this right now.
Awamori is one of the symbols of the national identity of the islanders, an essential attribute of the festive table. As of mid-2000-ies on the various Islands of the archipelago there were 47 companies producing Awamori. Recently in Okinawa, there was a tradition of buying Awamori particularly a decorative bottle that commemorates the birth of the child. The bottle is pasted picture of the baby, it is stored until they reach a certain age (usually 20 years) and drunk at a solemn family feast.
Awamori is served as an aperitif, in addition to the drink consumed during the meal. In Okinawa, Awamori drink is poured into small wine glasses that are the size do not differ from the thimble. In Japan, Awamori can be diluted with water or added to the drink ice. In addition, Awamori is used for the preparation of cocktails with lemon or orange juice.
The harm from the use of Awamori, a beverage consumed in very small doses, the damage to the body is applied is insignificant. But it should be remembered that any amount of alcohol adversely affects the entire human body. And excessive abuse can be irreparably dangerous. In medicine, the harm of alcoholic beverages has been proven by years of research. However, it is still an ongoing debate about the size of the damage caused to health by alcohol. As before, the open question remains: are there" safe " for the human body alcohol dosage?