While my very favorite drinks are caffeinated (the title of my blog is "Time for Tea" for a reason), I have been known to indulge in stronger stuff. I recently had an opportunity to taste some sake, although I opted for plum wine, or umeshu instead. Technically, to the Japanese, I was still drinking "sake" which refers to alcoholic drinks in general (it must be true, I read it on Wikipedia!). Plum wine is made from green unripe plums, or ume. The one I tried came in a bottle that looked like so:
Those are little ume floating at the bottom. The particular type I tried was called Kairakuen, and the lady was nice enough to write down the name for me in kanji.
She poured me a tiny little glass, and even gave me an ume, which I ate last. The little green plum was so strong—sour and filled with alcohol! It was quite a zinger!
In fact, even though the glass was only a few ounces, I was completely tipsy as I did these wine labels. Maybe that even helped? They feature ume (of course), as well as plum flowers, and the kanji that the helpful Sake lady drew for me.
The uber-minimalist one with the plums:
And here are a couple with the same design elements in different proportions. They're not exactly labels yet, I kind of like them just to describe a mood.