Contrary to my other favourite Shochu mix, which is fruity, garish and perfect for a sunny day, this Kome Shochu (rice Shochu) cocktail is more delicate and subtle in taste. Something more urban, for a contemporary but fresh Tokyo life.

However, don’t be fooled into thinking it to be a lighter, diluted Bloody Mary! True, Shochu is often compared to vodka. But even though this cocktail lacks a Mary’s strong spices, it bites even harder than one, so beware.



  • half a ripe and juicy tomato
  • 60 ml Kome Shochu – a spirit very similar in taste to Sake, but with a higher percentage of alcohol
  • 1/6 of a peeled lemon
  • 5ml sugar syrup
  • freshly ground pepper
  • a few fresh thyme leaves
  • ice cubes


1. Dice the half tomato and put it in a cocktail shaker with the lemon segment. Squish them very well with a muddler until it’s just a mash.
2. Add the Shochu, the sugar syrup and a bit of pepper. Shake well and then strain in a low glass with the ice. Add some more pepper and the thyme leaves on top.

A couple of notes: As the ingredients are so simple, your drink will be as good as all the elements are. So the nicer the tomatoes, the nicer the cocktail. And if you think it needs it, add a little bit more sugar syrup.

Styling: Margherita Poggiali
Photography: Dee Ramadan