Kikichoko is a white sake tasting cup usually made of porcelain. When you taste sake while visiting a sake brewery, you are often served one of these white cups with blue rings at the bottom. The cup you see here is called a “Kikichoko” (sake tasting cup) or “Janome Ochoko” (snake eye cup). This blue ringed design is known as a snake eye, what we would call a bulls eye. The purpose of these contrasting rings was originally to help assess the clarity of the sake by looking as the crisp border between the blue and white areas. The pure white part of the cup also allows you to check the overall color tint of the sake. This design became a hallmark of the sake industry in general. I even adopted a version of this design for the Urban Sake logo. One other reason this cup endures is that it is the official tasting cup used in many high profile japanese sake tasting competitions. The standard size of this type of tasting cup used in professional appraisals is 180ml (6.08 oz.), a serving size in Japan known as one “go”.
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