The varieties of this very Japanese drink also rely on the way it has been produced - if it is pasteurised or unpasteurised, has water added or not, and the percentage of rice that is polished off each individual seed pre-production.
But despite the depth of the product, the highly traditional industry, which is mostly manned by men, has declined in recent years, as the youngsters of Japan have opted for colourful cocktails and other brews instead. This has necessitated saké to travel to find overseas markets.
Madoka Numata is a saké sommelier who educates and promotes the eponymous beverage in Hong Kong. Her current role is as section manager for the wine cellar and wholesale business of the city'super Group.
But the Japan native had several "careers", before ending up in saké sales here. "My parents are very generous, and allowed me to study many things."
Numata majored in German, a language not widely studied in Japan, and after graduation decided to pursue further studies in Northern Ireland. "I wanted to go to a place that not many Japanese go to," she says.
She went on to study photo journalism, and had hoped to make it her career, but realised that competition was tough, and that other photographers of her age were already much more experienced than she.
Returning to Japan, she worked for two years at a small company selling healthy food products, but felt she needed a challenge and, due to the positive experience she had had in Northern Ireland, she decided to leave Japan again.
Numata arrived in Hong Kong without a job, but soon had an interview for a "mystery" position. The recruitment agents asked her strange questions - such as "Do you like drinking alcohol?" - but did not divulge the nature of the job.
"Only when I had an interview with the president of the company did I learn that the job was selling saké to restaurants,"