Ways to Waste your Sunday

Here is a selection of local micro-brewery beers that I have recently sampled, assembled on my kitchen counter as a representative cross-section of these companies’ offerings. The two with the owl logo are from Hitachino Nest, whose bespoke brewing plan was explained to me and Sergeant M a few days ago. The others are all available at my local specialty supermarket (of which I have two), and most of the companies on display here offer a wide range. Not shown are Yona Yona, which Sergeant M declared delicious, and Shindaiji, which he tested at Bloomoon cafe and also enjoyed. I have no knowledge or understanding of beer making or the language of beer appreciation, but from left to right here’s a rundown of the beers in one sentence each.

Tama no Megumi: This one is a hearty pilsner, enjoyable and easy to drink.

Uwa: In common with a lot of the microbrewery ales I’ve tried, this one is a bit frothy and sweet.

PremiumPilsner: no space in the title, I think, and this one was a classic remake of a German style, nothing special.

The orange beer: actually quite a tasty and interesting idea, light and easy to drink but a little overpowered by the orange flavour.

Nest Amber Ale: Not very heavy and quite easy to drink, delicious.

Nest Pale Ale: Also not so heavy as pale ales go, but possibly a little weak for those who are into Pale Ales.

Full Moon Beer: Had that hint of wine-i-ness that some of the more esoteric beers go for, too sweet and heady for my tastes but if you like that Anchor Steam barley wine ale you’ll like this.

The Sergeant and I visited the Ebisu beer factory yesterday, and his brother told me that a lot of beer companies in Japan offer bespoke services; it appears that, along with plum wine, ale is enjoying something of a boom here in Japan at the moment. If you visit Tokyo I strongly recommend trying a few out, and perhaps also visiting the Ebisu beer factory to learn something of the history of brewing in Japan. It’s a fascinating example of the speed and rigor with which the Japanese can adopt and perfect foreign industrial processes and products.