Shochu Melon Citrus Cocktail Recipe

By Timo Torner / Last updated on October 5, 2023

The Shochu Melon & Citrus Cocktail is a very popular drink in Japan. It's made of Shochu, Melon liqueur, and fresh lemon juice.
Shochu Melon Citrus cocktail

Just by looking at the Shochu Melon Citrus Cocktail, it reminds you of a closely related drink, the Midori Sour. Instead of a one-third vodka and two-thirds melon liqueur base, the Shochu Melon Citrus cocktail is made with equal parts of Shochu and Melon Liqueur and slightly better balanced.

It is also very slightly different in ABV because Midori usually contains 21%, and Shochu ranges between 20% and 30%. However, the difference is marginal.

Quick Facts Shochu Melon Citrus Cocktail

  • Method: shaken
  • Flavor profile: fruity, sweet
  • How to serve it: over ice
  • Best glassware: highball glass
  • Alcohol content: ~ 15%, 22 grams of alcohol per serving

The combination of earthy Shochu notes, fruity and sweet melon liqueur, and acidic lemon juice make for an excellent, refreshing drink.

Shochu Melon Citrus cocktail

Recipe Shochu Melon Citrus Cocktail

A refreshing sweet and sour melon cocktail based on Shochu.
Prep Time: 3 minutes
Total Time: 3 minutes
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: Japanese
Keyword: midori, Shochu
Servings: 1
Calories: 301kcal
Cost: $3.70


  • 1 Jigger
  • 1 Cocktail Shaker
  • 1 Hawthorne Strainer


  • 2 oz Shochu
  • 2 oz Midori Melon liqueur
  • 1 oz Fresh lemon juice
  • Maraschino cherry or lemon slice - (for garnish)


  • Pour all ingredients into a cocktail shaker filled with ice.
    2 oz Shochu, 2 oz Midori Melon liqueur, 1 oz Fresh lemon juice
  • Shake for a few seconds until the cocktail is chilled
  • Strain into an ice-filled glass and garnish with a Maraschino cherry or slice of lemon (optional).
    Maraschino cherry or lemon slice


Serving: 5.25ozCalories: 301kcalCarbohydrates: 15.5gSodium: 1mgPotassium: 33mgSugar: 15.5gVitamin C: 13mgCalcium: 2mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

About the Ingredients

Ingredient-wise, you don't need much to make a delicious Shochu Melon Citrus cocktail:

  • Shochu
  • Melon Liqueur
  • Lime Juice

But then, two out of these three ingredients are a little harder to get because, even though Shochu is such a famous liquor in Japan, it's relatively underrepresented outside the country. 

In fact, both base liquors, Shochu and Midori, are traditional Japanese products and part of many cocktail recipes. But especially Shochu is not that well-known internationally. You might not find a good bottle in your local liquor store and probably order via online stores instead. 

For the melon liqueur, we always use Japanese Midori. You could use another brand, but Midori is the go-to option. Apart from being the most sold Melon liqueur worldwide, it also is the standard ingredient the Japanese use to make this Shochu Melon & Citrus cocktail. Plus, Midori adds a fun, bright green color to your cocktail.

Besides these base ingredients, you only need freshly squeezed lemon juice and an optional splash of soda water to make it more refreshing. But if you want to keep things traditional: In Japan, they serve it without soda.

Tips for Mixing a Shochu Melon Citrus Cocktail

This drink is super easy to make, and with the right ingredients, it's almost impossible to mess it up. Just make sure you shake for at least 7 to 10 seconds to chill all ingredients properly. 

Since the Shochu Melon Citrus Cocktail comes over ice, it can water down quickly. To avoid this, use large, clear ice cubes, as they will melt slower. That's due to the smaller surfaces compared to more but smaller cubes and fewer impurities caught inside. 

More About Shochu

Shochu is a medium ABV liquor (20% - 30%) that can be made of various ingredients like rice, barley, sweet potatoes, and sugar cane. Depending on the base, the taste varies. As mentioned, Shochu is super popular in Japan and popular in cocktails due to its earthy flavor.

Sometimes people confuse it with Sake, but the two spirits couldn't be more different. Sake is a fermented beverage similar to wine, whereas Shochu is a distilled spirit. 

Shochu is traditionally served neat, on the rocks, or diluted with water. It is enjoyable hot and cold and often served in traditional Shochu cups. If you want to learn more, you can continue reading here:

Related Cocktail Recipes

Now that you have a bottle of Shochu at home, how about trying one of these recipes:

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