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  • Writer's picturelifeofandra

The Choya Single Year Umeshu - Review

The Choya Single Year Umeshu

Time for another drink!

A Japanese Ume Fruit Liqueur (Umeshu) with an incredibly fruity aroma.

The Choya Single Year Umeshu

A bit about

I found this small (200 ml) bottle at the local corner shop in Tokyo on my most recent visit to Japan and had 0 expectations when I bought it. I have tried Umeshu previously and although it is a highly popular brand, I wasn't sure if I have ever tried the Choya.


The Choya Single Year has a 15% ABV and has won gold at the 2022 San Francisco World Spirits Competition.

The Choya Single Year Umeshu

Umeshu is made, as the name suggests, from the ume fruit which is similar to a plum. The ume are soaked in shochu and sugar and left to mature for at least 9 months (as far as I'm aware).

The Choya Single Year is made from Nanko-ume fruit from the Kishu region (or Kii province) in the Wakayama Prefecture.

According to their website, producing a single bottle of Choya Single Year requires 315 grams of ume. Since it only uses real fruit and doesn't make use of artificial flavours, the Choya is classed as 'Honkaku Umeshu' - the authentic liqueur.

The Choya Single Year Umeshu

Time to try it!

At first, I tried it neat, at room temperature, purely because I was curious. I then tried it chilled, first neat, then with ice and mixers.

It's highly fruity, quite tart, full of flavour and delicious sweetness, without being sickly or overly sweet as the tartness balances it out.

You can enjoy it neat, ideally chilled, over ice or in cocktails.

It has honestly become one of my favourite fruit liqueurs.

I usually prefer it served over ice in a tall glass and topped with soda or tonic water if I'm enjoying a drink in the garden, or a single shot, neat and chilled, paired with dessert.

You can find it on some UK websites in the 70cl version for around £20 and if, like me, you're a fan of Umeshu liqueur, then I highly recommend you give this one a try if you haven't already.

the Choya Single Year Umeshu review

As always, please drink responsibly.

If you like this little review please click on the little heart below and if you've tried the Choya Single Year, I would love to hear what you think of it, in the comments below.

I hope life is treating you well.

Take care.

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