We recently received a sample of a spirit that I am quite frankly not very familiar with. Iichiko Kurobin is a type of shochu – which is kind of like the less known little brother of Soju. (Easily confused, similarly spelled, but not quite the same thing.) The spirit itself has a very mild flavor – which had its own challenges in incorporating it into a cocktail.

Chris wanted to “hold up” the shochu – to find a way to feature it in a drink so its subtle flavor would shine through, without being overpowered by other ingredients. Strangely, after quite a bit of trial and error, it seemed like the best combination of ingredients included one of the strongest flavors I can think of: Wasabi!

Using mainly iichiko Kurobin, this cocktail adds Grand Marnier to add a smooth creamy sweetness, and just five drops of a wasabi tincture. It’s not a spicy cocktail by any means – but the wasabi adds just a hint of a kick that adds the perfect amount of complexity.

Don’t be deterred if you don’t already have Wasabi tincture lying around (who doesn’t?) – it’s extremely easy to make.

Give this one a try – you won’t be disappointed!

Stone's Throw

Stone’s Throw

This shochu cocktail features Grand Marnier and just a hint of wasabi tincture to add complexity and kick.
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Ingredients

  • 2 oz Iichiko Kurobin (Shochu)
  • 3/4 oz Grand Marnier
  • 5 drops Wasabi Tincture

Wasabi Tincture

  • 3 oz High Proof Spirit
  • 1/10 oz Powdered Wasabi

Instructions

  • Build over ice in a rocks glass.
  • Stir to chill and dilute
  • Garnish with an orange twist.

Wasabi Tincture

  • Mix wasabi powder and spirit well.
  • Leave for a couple of weeks, filtering out the wasabi with a coffee filter when the flavor reaches your desired strength.