Toast the Season with These Limited Edition Fall Beers, Happoshu, and Chu-Hi



Toast the Season with These Limited Edition Fall Beers, Happoshu, and Chu-Hi


The harsh heat of summer may still be with us even as we enter September, but that hasn't stopped Japan’s major beer manufacturers from getting into the fall spirit. Already colorful cans sporting illustrations of fall leaves can be seen sprucing up the shelves of convenience stores and supermarkets. But it’s not just the packages that change during the fall. Beer manufacturers break out special, delicious recipes that you can only enjoy during the autumn months. Here’s a look at several limited edition beers, happoshu (low-malt beers), and canned Chu-Hi (a type of drink made with a base of shochu and carbonated water) that are perfect for the coming of cooler weather.  

Kirin Beer: 秋味
aki ajiAki Aji from Kirin Beer

A long-selling favorite, this fall beer is returning to the shelves for the twenty-sixth time this year. When you see this can in stores, you know that the hot days of summer are coming to an end. To make their special autumn edition beer, Kirin uses 1.3 times the amount of malt used for their usual brew, producing a robust flavor well-suited for a fall beer. 

Asahi Beer: クリアアサヒ 秋の琥珀
clear asahi aki no kohakuClear Asahi Aki no Kohaku by Asahi Beer

Meaning “the amber of autumn,” Asahi’s Aki No Kohaku is made using 1.5 times the usual amount of barley. It has a lovely amber color that is much darker than the regular Clear Asahi available year round. The taste of this happoshu, however, is surprisingly refreshing-- the perfect drink for these last, lingering hot days of summer. 

Suntory Beer: 秋の旬秋
aki no shun aji 
Aki no Shun Aji by Suntory Beer

Japanese cuisine traditionally places a great deal of importance on the seasonality of ingredients. It shouldn't be a surprise, then, that Suntory has given us a happoshu designed to compliment the tastes of fall foods such as saury, mackerel, and chestnuts. This beer has a rich flavor complemented by a clean finish. 

Sapporo Beer: 麦とホップ 秋の薫り麦
mugi to hop aki no kaori mugiMugi to Hops Aki No Kaori Mugi by Sapporo Beer 

To make their Mugi To Hops Aki No Kaori Mugi happoshu, Suntory uses malt that has been slowly roasted over a low flame. This gives the beer both full-bodied flavor and aroma. 

Asahi Beer: 果実の瞬間 薫る秋和梨チューハイ
kajitsu no shunkan kaoru aki wa nashi chu-hi
Asahi Chu-Hi Kajitsu No Shunkan "Kaoru Aki Kokusan Nashi" by Asahi Beer

Not a fan of beer? Try a fall edition canned Chu-Hi from Asahi Beer featuring the flavor of one of Japan’s beloved fall fruits: nashi, or Japanese pear. They use real pear juice to produce this drink so you can enjoy the fruit’s refreshingly sweet flavor.  
Suntory Spirits: 秋りんごチューハイ
aki ringo chu-hi -196℃ Aki Ringo by Suntory Spirits

-196℃ is another popular brand of Chu-Hi. While lemon and grapefruit are standard favorites throughout the year, fall means it’s time to break out the apples. For their fall-edition Aki Ringo, -196℃ uses apples from Aomori, a prefecture famous for its orchards. The sweet and slightly tart flavor of roasted apples sets this drink apart from others. 

Suntory Spirits: のんある気分巨峰サワーテイスト
nonaru kibun kyoho sour taste

Nonaru Kibun Kyoho Sour Taste by Suntory Spirits 

For those who prefer non-alcoholic beverages, Suntory Spirits has a new drink made using yet another favorite fall fruit: kyoho grapes. Not only is this beverage alcohol-free, but sugar-free and calorie-free as well! Enjoy the taste of fall without any guilt with this drink. 

Do you have a favorite Japanese fall drink? Or maybe a favorite place during the fall season to enjoy it? Let us know in the comments! 

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