Sapporo Christmas Market

It’s the most wonderful time of the year. The 17th annual Sapporo Munich Christmas Market. It’s has a selection of vendors from Russia, Poland, Germany, Japan, and other far flung nations. They’ve got roasted nuts, matryoshka dolls, Christmas ornaments, and novelty foods galore. Multiple varieties of hot wine, cider, and beer are available. Want a […]

Shochu Cocktails

Each Friday evening, after spending a rather mind numbing week at work, I like to unwind with a drink or two of my choosing. Recently, I have been a fan of the chu-hai, usually the higher alcohol content varieties. A new favorite is a hybrid vodka chu-hai called 99.99 or フォーナイン. (four nine) It does […]

Guinness, Japanese Style

I love Guinness. Unfortunately, here in Japan, a Guinness habit could bleed you dry of your hard earned yen. I’ve seen pints of Guinness selling for ¥900+ in bars, which probably is what turned me off bars in general in the country. A 330 milliliter can also sells for ¥300+ in supermarkets and convenience stores. […]

Japanese Beer Can Artwork

With only four primary brewers battling it out for supremacy amongst Japanese consumers, and a micobrew scene that remains straight jacketed by anachronistic laws, Japanese marketing has to really pull out all stops to distinguish themselves on the supermarket shelf. Kirin decided to really turn on the Hokkaido charm by featuring the winding Chitose River, […]

Yogurt Alcohol?

Japan loves its yogurt. Yogurt-like drinks are still delivered by bicycle daily and supermarket shelves are full of varieties. So I wasn’t entirely surprised when I came across this rather unique crossbreed, yogurt liqueur, in a small food atelier. There are quite a few mass produced yogurt based spirits, but this particular hooch was made my a […]

Because Japan

Since my first visits to Japan, I would come across a variety of gadgets in stores like Don Quijote and Tokyu Hands, that made me scratch my head. Some of the more interesting of those quirky products are beer can attachments that create a creamier, more substantial head after pouring. This has always perplexed me. […]

New Beer: Umami

Oh, Japanese beer can marketing ploy! I’ve fallen for your trickery again. After a steady diet of Happoshu, I was ready to pick up a real beer after a long week at work. I opted for Suntory’s new offering –  The Malt’s: Umami.  It’s the malt’s umami, theirs for all enernity. They own the umami.It […]

German Style Pretzels from Pennsylvania in Japan

Another one of those foody surprises crept up on me today here in Sapporo. Snyder’s of Hanover apparently sees Japan as such a lucrative market that it is making a wasabi flavored version of its hard pretzel snacks, sold only in Nippon! The taste was as advertised, a bit strong, but interesting. The power of […]

Did I Drink That?

I thought it wouldn’t come to this. Maybe things would have gone differently with some different life decisions. But unfortunately life has a way of rearing it’s ugly head when one least expects it. This past week I tasted the Devil’s Elixir. Alcohol Free, Sugar Free, Calorie Free – a non-alcohol beer so devoid of […]