Izakaya + Sushi Dens Have New Drink Programs, including a Bamboo Picnic of Premium Sakes

I like the word, sake.
It’s fun to say, and feels like the word itself has celebration built into it.
Izakaya Den now offers a Bamboo Picnic: a traditional Japanese wooden box decorated with bamboo leaf, containing a trio of premium sakes – a clever play on the bento box – served chilled, of course, and a side of Kinpira for just $20.
You can choose to enjoy your sake from glasses or the masu drinking boxes – filled to the rim to encourage prosperity.
The rotating selection keeps it exciting for sake lovers as well as those new to the Japanese liquor.
Selections include Sayuri, a full Nigori sake, Umenishiki, a Junmai Gingo sake [with a delicate, fruity finish] and The Chokaisan, a Junmai Diagingo sake offering elegance and balance in taste.
Presentation is so much of the fun, and if you’d like to bring me sake in this manner, I’m in.
This elegant experience is available exclusively at the Red Bar on the first floor.

Izakaya Den
1487-A South Pearl Street

Sushi Den now has intriguing new cocktails, sake tasting charts and wine pairing notes for their stellar food menus.
Known for their unparalleled sushi quality, they’ve elevated their drink program to match.
The extensive menu includes 10 revamped cocktails and over 30 premium white and red wines.
Red Rocks – with Breckenridge bourbon, sweet vermouth, black raspberry and orange juice – is sweet and refreshing, with colors befitting autumn.
Pacific Time winks at Japan in its name, with Goat vodka*, St. Germain, fresh lemon juice and white grapes.
Toshi Kizaki has also curated one of the top sake lists in the country.
The new list offers a tasting chart, with sakes ranked from sweetest to driest, sorted by region, along with food pairing suggestions.
The wine list also includes exciting and unusual pairing notes.
For example, Miso Black Cod – my all-time favorite – can be paired with sparkling Jolivet, while Yellowtail Kama pairs beautifully with Chamisal Estate Pinot Noir.

*From Peach Street Distillers in Palisade. Local = Lovely.

Sushi Den
1487 South Pearl Street

Here’s a very, very [did I mention, very] special and rare treat – a cocktail recipe from the genius cocktail minds at Izakaya Den – thanks to the generosity of one Miss Ellen Marchman Larkey – the first thing I order when I arrive – the Gion District:

1 oz Sky Blood Orange vodka
1 oz Sky Ginger Vodka
1 oz lemon juice
.5 oz Asian 5 spice syrup**
Shake all ingredients and pour into a martini or coupe glass [I prefer coupe – so elegant!]

**Simple syrups are easily made at home.
1 c of sugar to 1 c of water, with the flavoring to steep while it comes to a rolling boil and sugar dissolves.
In this case, you can just buy 5 spice powder, dissolve in a bit of water first, then add into the mixture.
Play with amount of 5 spice powder starting at 1T, until it’s to your preferred strength.
Or, use: whole star anise, cloves, cinnamon, fennel seeds and Sichuan pepper – let that steep – and once sugar is dissolved, strain and put in bottle or jar to store in the fridge.

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