Shochu needs no excuses

The first time someone asked if I'd like to try Shochu, I replied, "God bless you." The correct answer should have been, "Ohhhhh, yes. I've heard that Shochu is delicious." Because it is.

If you've never tried Shochu, you're missing out. Shochu is a distilled liquor made from barley, sweet potatoes or rice that's quickly becoming the hot new trend on both coasts. It's often confused with sake, but sake is a brewed rice wine -- and Shochu is both drier and higher in alcohol (but lower in calories).

On Thursday, August 6, Elway's in Cherry Creek is hosting an event that will pair Shochu with fantastic food from Aspen's Nobu Matushisa and Elway's. The surf will come from Nobu Matushisa executive sushi chef Philip Tanaka; the turf from Elway's executive chef Tyler Wiard. I can't wait. Matsuhisa is the one place in Aspen where I always eat, even if I'm only in town for a day; the freshest fish and the unique preparations make it one of my favorite restaurants in the state.

And with this event, you're spared the four-hour hike up to Aspen if you want to try Nobu Matsuhisa -- plus you get some Elway's food as a bonus. The dinner will be from 6 to 8:30 p.m. at Elway's, 2500 East First Avenue; the ticket price of $60 includes food and drinks (but not tax and gratuity). To get yours, call 303-399-5353.

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