Umeshu = ume + shu = plum + alcohol
Umeshu, a kind of alcoholic beverage or cocktail, is made by plums harvested in June soaked in liquor (white liquor, shochu 焼酎, etc)
Actually, plums (ume) often become ripe in June, but we can not eat raw plums because of their very small amount of poison and strong sour taste. Usually, people use plums as an ingredient to make other dishes or beverage, for example, jam, umeboshi (梅干し), umezu (梅酢), or umeshu.
Umeshu can be made with a very simple recipe: 1 kg of plum + 0,2-1 kg of sugar + 1.8L of your favorite alcohol. Put all of these ingredients into a large secure container and keep in a dark cool place. When the liquid turns to bright yellow, umeshu can be served!
Umeshu can be enjoyed by drinking liquid part and eating plums. Because it is not too sweet and do not have alcoholic flavor, the liquid or liquor part is very easy to drink, even for people who hate to drink alcoholic beverages. Plums in umeshu also are really yummy because it absorbed high concentration of sugar. Plums and the liquor, together make umeshu so tasty.
Umeshu can be stored for a long time. I mean it does not have an expiration date. And umeshu seems to become more and more delicious for the longer time you soak it.
It is easy to drink a lot, so it can make you drunk before you realize that. However, this is one of healthy drink for your body. Umeshu can help to relieve constipations, prevent diarrhoea, stimulate appetite, and it contains minerals and calcium.