Japanese Wine


Alcohol consumption has been part of Japanese culture since its early history. Rice wines (sake), beer and spirits have evolved significantly since their humble beginnings, and so has their place in culture. Some have proprietary meaning, used to accompany specific foods over the course of a meal either to match flavors or aid in digestion. Others are for pure sipping pleasure. Drinking has even become a tool to strengthen business and social relationships, with socially acceptable displays of heightened intoxication. 
The Japanese beer market has grown to become the leading alcoholic beverage in the country, with many different styles from light to dark available. Happoshu (“low malt”) is a similar sparkling drink, though produced with less malt than standard beer. Third Beer (Shin Janru or “New Genre”), is a sparkling unmalted beverage, produced from peas, soy or wheat. As for wine, most of the standard grape table wine in Japan is imported, although Read more »

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Popular wines made in Japan under $20

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Varietals Produced in Japan View all

  • Merlot

    The Occitanian word “merlot” translates to “young blackbird.” An accurate description for this popular, early-budding...

  • Diamond

    History of the grape: The varietal dates back to the 1880s when horticulturalist Jacob Moore (hence the synonym “Moor...

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

    “King of the Red Wine Grapes.” The colonizer of the vineyards, pushing native wine grapes into its shadows. The Caber...

  • Melon

    In the 1970s and 1980s, in a period when varietal accuracy on wine labels was often a secondary thought much of what ...

  • Chardonnay

    British wine writer and critic, Jancis Robinson, once noted that throughout the 80’s and 90’s in the United States, C...

  • Pinot Noir

    “With so voluptuous a perfume, so sweet an edge, they make the blood run hot,” Joel Fleischman, wine columnist at Van...

Subregions of Japan

Popular Wineries in Japan View all

  • The Koshu Wine Project

    By creating our wine, we brought Koshu to the international market, a long journey for a grape v...

  • Gekkeikan Sake

    This is one Hidden Treasures in Sacramento you don’t want to miss out on. Gekkeikan Sake offers c...

  • Gascon Wine

    Don Miguel Gascón wines reflect Argentina’s rich winemaking history, capturing the true expressio...

  • Kizan Winery Co., Ltd.

    KIZAN WINERY is a small family-operated winery. For more than 75 years, Tsuchiya's family has bee...

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Japan on Snooth

  • Wow. Lots to consider here. To start with the simplest - Emark - it wasn't ... know what to say about that Japanese situation. I have relatives in Poland who were exposed to lots of Chernobyl radiation. They have things like lupus and other health problems these days. Some people are skeptical and say that those folks are just blaming all of t... Read More

    Forum post in the topic So, Have You Heard of This?

  • Gekkeikan Plum Wine Japan NV


    As a fan of Fu-ki Plum Wine, I was anxious to try another. Although this class is in the 'too sweet to have often' category for me, every now and then that dessert craving comes 'round. Most of the flavour is reminiscent of a cream sherry, which was a surprise but not altogether unwelcomed. There's a fruity finish however, which says "sugary ... Read More

    Wine review by Aegelis

  • Was going to send you a PM but I still can't figure out how to do it. ... ... love posts where someone in Japan asks for pairing suggestions for tacos and guacomole! Brilliant stuff indeed! As my favorite troupe used to say - now for something completely differen Read More

    Forum post in the topic A purposely 'bretted' wine?

  • Choya Umeshu Plum Wine With Ume Fruit Plum Wine NV


    I loved the sweet but crisp taste. Read More

    Wine review by nwirishlass

  • JD, left my cell in a cab in Tokyo a dozen years back (that kind of booboo is ... is absolutely standard in Japan, and only the tip of an iceberg of more miraculous nature. There are parts of town where standards slip but almost universally nobody liberates things forgotten, lost or even left insecure for a few minutes while running errands. A... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Eager to learn all about wine

  • DVOGLER and DMCKER - both "D"s and yet so different in outlook!Very ... ... Do they have stoops in Japan? Those are the best recycling/disposal mechanisms ever devised. We'd leave out old books, shoes, electronics, kitchen stuff and it would all be gone. Even some power cords that had a blizzard dump a couple feet of snow on them disappeared ... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Eager to learn all about wine

  • Hello everybodyMay I propose you a little film about sake in Japan ?http://www.vimeo.com/77367018CordiallyFantong Read More

    Forum post in the topic Sake

  • If she's likening it to malolactic, once it's tamed we're talking ... ... business changes back in Japan required some firefighting then longer term effort to change structures. Bottom line, the book got permanently shelved. I had planned to interview a couple more winemakers, and Zelma was next up at the point I had to pull the plug. Had done... Read More

    Forum post in the topic A purposely 'bretted' wine?

  • "smelled like a pig farm on a 100degree Central Valley day"Only ... ... the Gulf Coast or southern Japan, or a cool and damp one in northern Britain. Or maybe I'm just thinking of the southern, arid end of the Central/San Joaquin  Valley, not up north where there is some humidity. ;-)And I sure know what you're talking about regarding those cr... Read More

    Forum post in the topic A purposely 'bretted' wine?

  • Sheesh, is that all?Seein' some very interesting vertical vs. horizontal ... Rhone options over here in Japan. Only issue, unfortunately, is pric Read More

    Forum post in the topic Is it time for the Tasting of...

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