Japanese Name: サッポロ 「ホップ畑の香り」
Release: May. 18, 2011
Purchase Price: ￥140 @FamilyMart
With the long summer ahead of us in Japan, the appeal of a tall glass of cold beer grows stronger as the temperature starts to increase. Unfortunately, new beer and new genre beverage releases have been few and far between. However, Sapporo has not forgotten us as they’ve recently released a new dai-san biru happousei called Hoppu-batake no Kaori, meaning “aroma of the hopfield,” just in time for the hot summer months. Let’s see what they brewed up for us.
Popping the can, you’ll immediately get a whiff of the fresh hoppy aroma. Sapporo used hops from Furano in Hokkaido, kicking up this happousei with some quality. On the nose I pick up a scent of pine, lemons, and fresh cut grass. My first gulp tasted of richness without the hops being overbearing, leading to a dry finish with some nice lasting bitterness.
In the end, Sapporo comes through with a dai-san happousei that can actually run head-to-head with a true beer. It has all the qualities of a great tasting refreshing full-bodied hoppy lager (in the Japanese sense), for 140 yen at the convenience store. Great bang for buck, and to boot, you’ll get a different taste from your average lager.