The Roots of Awamori

The Roots of AwamoriDistillery techniques were first developed in the Mesopotamian Civilization around 3500 B.C. Distilled liquor was spread both westward and eastward by the Greek philosopher Aristotle . In the West, it eventually led to the development of brandy in France in the 13th century and Scotch whisky in the 15th century. The Scandinavians developed aquavit, the Russians developed vodka in the 16th century, and the Dutch developed gin in the 17th century. Distilled liquor was also introduced to the East, leading to the development of araq in Iraq, mahua liquor in India, lao-lon in Thailand, white liquor in China in the 13th century, and shochu in Korea. It was introduced to Okinawa from Thailand around the 15th century in the form of awamori.

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 There are four theories regarding the origin of the name 'awamori.' The first theory concerns the main ingredient. Although Thai rice is used today, millet was once widely cultivated, even in Okinawa, and it was used to produce awamori. Millet is called 'awa' in Japanese and 'awa-mori' literally means 'a heap of millet'.
Traditional Distillery machines
The World of the Awamori Industry
Year Major Events Connected with Awamori and Shochu