I have this bottle of tomato wine we bought in Japan many, many years ago. Time to try it. Not a lot of information available, a reverse google image search gave me a bar located in Saitama that served this tomato shōchū 焼酎 at ¥380.
It’s a clear liquid that smells strong and reminiscent of sake. 25% alcohol doesn’t sound strong, but it certainly tastes strong and left a burning sensation as it travels down my throat. Small sips, especially drinking neat. Not a great deal of tomato flavour.
Distilled spirits, like grain alcohol, are not that memorable neat. I’ll try adding it to soda water and/or juice. In Japanese supermarkets and convenience stores there are lots of mixed shōchū drinks made with soda water and flavouring such as lemon, lime, apple.
Another method is to drink shōchū with warm water, a bit like hot sake.