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Bottle of Alcohol


24 Sep 2020

I was wondering could somebody translate the text in these photos for me.

I am trying to establish the drink (Sake presumably), the brand, the age, is it safe to drink.

It was a gift from a Japanese student who lived with us in Ireland. I guess the year would have been about 1996 or 1997.

Its unopened, corked and sealed pretty well.

Thanks for the help.

It's shochu, not sake. This one is made from barley.
Here's the product page. 吉四六 | 二階堂酒造
The sticker just says not for consumption of minors and to be careful when opening. I'm not sure what the 8,5 means. It could mean mid-1996 because 1996 was Heisei year 8.

What is the average shelf life of shochu?
Technically shochu does not have a shelf life since distilled alcoholic beverages are not so high in sugar and/or protein content. Shochu is usually more than 25% in alcohol content, so technically it can be enjoyed for a long time without risk of decomposition. Many times people age shochu more, just as whiskey enthusiasts prefer well-aged bottles.
Shochu should be kept in a cool, dark place. Once it is opened, the taste of the shochu begins to change progressively as time passes. Once opened, shochu should be consumed within a couple of months.

In other words, open it up and party on, Garth! :)
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And here's some advice on how you can drink it.
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