- Thin; “thick” (strongly flavoured)
Opposing expressions for describing sake taste. Usui (which simply means thin), is a negative term, often for sake with insufficient umami. Close synonyms include mizuppoi (水っぽい, watery), fukurami ga nai (ふくらみがない, literally “lacking expansiveness”), and similar. If the sake is not particularly rich in aroma or taste elements, but still has proper sake flavour, it will be described with the descriptors kirei and tanrei (淡麗) rather than the negative usui.
The opposite of usui (sake with excessive umami) is described with expressions such as koi (“thick” or “dense”) and aji ga ooi (味が多い, (long “o”), “(too) much taste”). However, in cases where the sake is strongly-flavoured but still rounded enough to balance, it will be described by such terms as koku ari (コクあり“has body”) , haba ari (幅あり, “has breadth”) , or noujun (濃醇, a sake-specific phrase written with characters meaning “thick” or “rich” and “pure”.)