What is SMV?
SMV is an acronym for “Sake Meter Value,” which informs the consumer on whether a sake is sweet or dry by assigning it a negative or positive value. SMV is determined by using a floating hydrometer to measure the relative density of the brew, sweeter sake will have more sugar and therefore denser. The reading on the hydrometer will display negative values when the brew is denser and positive when lighter. This measurement is then used as SMV values.
In general, the more negative the value, the sweeter the sake, and the more positive the value, the drier the sake.
However, SMV does not directly correspond to the sweetness on our palate as other flavour components will affect the consumer's perception of taste. Therefore it is mostly used as an indication of flavour.