You are currently viewing Ep. 32: Where to Learn about Sake and Enjoy It: an interview with Marie Cheong-Thong
Marie Cheong-Thong on Sugidama Podcast

Ep. 32: Where to Learn about Sake and Enjoy It: an interview with Marie Cheong-Thong

Sake is not a very easy topic. If you want to understand it well, you need to do some studying. You can buy a book or two about sake (see Episode 12: 5 Essential Books about Sake) and read them. You can go to sake events and probably join a sake promoting organisation such as the British Sake Association.  Finally, you can go to a sake course and get a sake qualification.

And my guest for this episode is Marie Cheong-Thong, a certified WSET sake, wine and spirits educator, freelance writer and the Chairman of the British Sake Association among other titles, who is talking about all these options as well as about plenty of other sake related topics.

Don’t forget, Sugidama Podcast now has a sponsor, London Sake, an excellent online sake store. London Sake has one of the widest selections of premium and craft sake available online today. They deliver across the UK and Europe, and with over 100 sake from 25 breweries, there really is something for everyone.

Using simple online tasting notes and sensible, affordable food pairings they help you find the perfect sake without any of the fuss. Listeners of the podcast can get a 10% discount Listen to the episode to get the magical code! London Sake: making sake simple.

Episode’s Content:

  • Introduction and background
  • Marie’s sake aha moment
  • British Sake Association
  • Sake education options: books and WSET
  • Sake education options: SSI, Sake School of America, Sake Sommelier Association and other options
  • Who and why come to learn about sake
  • How a sake course is organised, key topics
  • What to do after the graduation
  • Interest in sake is growing everywhere
  • Sake of the episode: Kanpai Namazake


Marie’s website:
The Larder at 36

British Sake Association

Kanpai Online Store

Sugidama Podcast on Podchaser – please review if you don’t use Apple Podcasts

Music used:
Wirklich Wichtig (CB 27) by Checkie Brown

Just Arround the World (Kielokaz ID 362) by KieLoKaz


Vocal: Svetlana


Alex is a London-based sake blogger, podcaster, IWC Sake judge and sake advocate. He is a publisher of the Sugidama Blog website and a host of the Sugidama Podcast. Alex has an International Kikisake-shi (Sake Specialist) qualification from SSI (Sake Service Institute). He sees his mission as expanding the awareness of Japanese sake among as many people as possible and helping the growing community of sake lovers to bring together beautiful Japanese sake and non-Japanese food as a way to build a better understanding between our cultures.

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