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5 most popular alcoholic beverages of Japan

22.07'13 - Jörg Nitzsche, Japan Interpreter

Just like tea, Japan has a huge variety of alcoholic beverages too. If you are organizing a party for your Japanese business colleagues and you want to know which drinks to serve them, here are the 5 most popular alcoholic beverages of Japan.

  1. The most popular alcoholic beverage in Japan is beer. Though there are countless breweries out here, the leading ones are Kirin, Asahi, Suntory and Sapporo. Happoshu and Third Beer are the relatively new developments in the Japanese beer industry but are quite popular though.

  1. Rice wine, also called sake or nihonshu is brewed using rice, water and white koji mold. The alcohol content in sake is 10-20% only and is drunk hot, as well as cold. Besides major brands, there are several local rice wine brands that are sold all over in Japan.

  1. Wine is also gaining a lot of popularity in Japan, especially amongst women. Though Japan imports red, white, and sparkling wines from France, Italy, the United States, it also has its own domestic wine industry. Yamanashi Prefecture is a famous area in Japan where domestic wine is produced.

  1. Other popular alcohol that is consumed largely in Japan is Whisky. Whisky is served on rocks and is mixed with water or ice. Gin and vodka based drinks are also enjoyed by the Japanese and are commonly available at bars, restaurants, and izakaya in Japan.

  1. The fifth popular alcohol beverage in Japan is Chuhai. It is a fruit-flavored alcoholic drink with an alcohol content of just between 5-8 percent. Common flavors in Chuhai include lemon, peach, grapefruit, lime, winter pear, apple, and orange.

To make your drinking party a success and to win accolades from your Japanese business colleagues, learn about the alcohol etiquettes in Japan from a Japanese interpreter. Your Japanese colleagues would appreciate that fact that you know something about their culture.


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