Saketini

Sake Martini With Cucumber
Joseph De Leo / Getty Images
Ratings (8)
  • Total: 3 mins
  • Prep: 3 mins
  • Cook: 0 mins
  • Yield: 1 cocktail (1 serving)
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
205 Calories
0g Fat
1g Carbs
0g Protein
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

The sake martini (or saketini) is a delightful way to enjoy sake and it can be made with either gin or vodka. The recipe is very easy to mix up and it makes a wonderful dinner drink.

In the saketini, the sake acts like the vermouth of a classic gin martini. This brings in a different nuance that only the "rice wine" can contribute. Technically, sake is not wine but is more like beer because it is brewed from rice. 

Since there are a few styles of sake available, you can explore pairing the options with different gins and vodkas. Each will be a slightly new experience and you may find a preference for one over all the others.

Additionally, some saketini recipes add a hint of orange liqueur—typically 1/2 ounce or less—and others invert the main ingredients as seen in the vodka version. There are even a few garnish options to choose from. Have fun with all these possibilities and enjoy your sake experience!

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 ounces gin (or vodka)
  • 1/2 ounce sake
  • Garnish: olive or cucumber slice

Steps to Make It

Pour the ingredients into a mixing glass filled with ice.

Strain into a chilled cocktail glass.

Garnish with an olive or slice of cucumber.

Vodka Saketini

Many drinkers prefer vodka over gin. Just like many other martinis, you can certainly pour your favorite vodka into the saketini. If you prefer a vodka-forward cocktail, simply use it in place of the recipe's gin.

Alternatively, it's very common to invert the ingredients so the vodka becomes the back up to a good sake. This switch also creates a significantly lighter cocktail.

Shake 2 1/2 ounces sake with 1 ounce vodka. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass and add the garnish of your choice.

Garnish Options

There are quite a few ways to dress up the saketini and you can switch it up to fit your mood. Each option will slightly alter the drink's flavor and they're just as interesting to experiment with as the alcohol combinations.

Olives are always a good option for a clean martini. With the sake, though, you might find it best to stick with a single olive. Quite often three is too overpowering for sake, especially if you tend to drink rather slow.

Sliced cucumber is a favorite garnish for the saketini. Many people prefer the melon-like taste of the Japanese cucumber, though nearly any variety will add a crisp, cooling flavor to the drink. Cut a round slice or go with a very thin strip cut lengthwise down the cucumber. The first option can float on top of the drink and the second is beautiful when folded inside the glass like a ribbon.

Some people like to add a maraschino cherry to this cocktail. It's is a nice addition, but a more appropriate fruit would be the lychee. The Asian fruit has a sweet, almost strawberry-like taste and it is a wonderful way to brighten up the vodka and sake combo.