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Ask Beau - "How can you clean a masu?"

Dear sir, 

I am looking for an instruction on how to clean/take care of (cleaning tips) the Japanese cypress sake cups (hinoki masu.) If you know, please let me know. 

Thank you very much, 

Yvonne L

Beau TimkenYvonne - first - you must drop the "sir"! Dear "monkey boy" Dear "dork" Dear "sake jockey" Dear "goofball" are all better and more apropos than "Dear Sir."

There are several ways.

First is this for personal cleaning or for a restaurant/bar?

Obviously there are health codes (health code measures) for a public establishment. They are actually cracking down on masu in restaurants in SF for sanitary reasons.

To clean for public consumption is very tough on the masu as you can well imagine. They (the Health Board) require the same soapy water that glassware needs. They also require a certain amount of heat for the water too. Heat and soap are bad for hinoki.

If it is for personal use I recommend cold-water flushes. Simply wash several times with cool water - this usually always removes the remaining sake "elements"! Do not leave in water and contrary to what some say - do not leave in the sun for extra sanitation. I prefer to dry out the inside with a clean towel after the wash -

Simply cool water.

If you are a clean freak - (like me on most other things) - use a little salt and gently rub inside the masu - but make certain that you rinse all of the salt out!!! (You don't want margarita sake at your next pouring.)

Hope that helps...

PS. On a completely unrelated topic I hope that the sake gods cast thunderbolts - hail and brimstone on the individuals who broke into my car and stole my True Sake Newsletter laptop computer and the slime who etched graffiti in my store's front window. May the fleas of 1,000 camels infest your armpits.

Please send your sake specific questions to askbeau2 @ (This address is not for general questions and I only review the questions once per month. All other correspondence should use info @

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