I attended the quarterly gathering of the Shochu Kai last night for an evening of shochu tasting and fellowship. Shochu is sort of like the Japanese version of vodka and is made from several different sources like rice, barley, potato, and wheat. Each member of the group is required to bring one bottle of their favorite shochu to the tasting, so we basically ended up “tasting” about 27 different varieties and grading them! The overall winner (and also my favorite) was made from soba, or buckwheat, while the 2nd place finisher was made from rice. And since I don’t normally drink shochu, I liked having the opportunity to taste the different varieties. Mahalo to Leon Yoshida for organizing this great event (which, by the way, has grown so fast that there are now two Shochu Kai groups)!
I also would like to thank many of the Shochu Kai members and others for their generous donations to ManoaDNA’s annual “Boys & Their Toys” toy drive benefiting the USMC’s “Toys for Tots”. Our event will be held next Saturday, Dec. 10th, from 5:30 – 8:00pm, over at Gordon Biersch in the Aloha Tower Marketplace. Bring a toy and receive a raffle ticket or purchase more raffle tickets to be eligible for some really awesome prizes … all proceeds will go to the “Toys for Tots” charity. Our friends, Herb Ohta Jr., Jon Yamasato, and Brother Noland graciously offered to join us that evening to help provide entertainment, so bring a toy and come on down! Make it an early evening of great food, drink, and music … and who knows, you may win yourself a great prize!