Japan’s Ika Tokkuri sake bottles are pretty much as green a bottle as you’ll find; they’re made entirely from squid skins. Bottle-like shapes can be made by artfully stuffing the squids with rice or grain, and then using another green technology–the sun–to dry them into the desired shape.
As for that fishy, squid taste? It’s actually desirable among certain sake drinkers, as it makes the taste “smoother and milder,” sort of like aging Scotch in a particular type of wood cask; but unlike the casks, the Ika Tokkuri are edible after use, producing a sort of sake-infused squid jerky that should taste familiar to Japanese bar-goers.
The process for making the Ika Tokkuri starts when cuttlefish are caught, cleaned and set outside in the sun for drying. Once partially dried, the skins are stuffed with grain or rice and molded by hand in to the shape of a bottle. With the drying process complete the bottles are ready for use. The best part is that when warm sake is poured into the Ika Tokkuri, it absorbs the salty flavors from the dried squid and becomes milder and smoother in flavor.
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