Japanese Name: サッポロ 麦とホップ＜赤＞
Release: Apr. 17, 2013
Type: Liqueur (発泡性)
Purchase Price: ￥105 @Aeon
In its third release, instead of producing a limited amount for a campaign, Sapporo decided to bestow Mugi to Hop Aka on the masses. Aka, if you can’t tell from the can means “red” in Japanese, and pouring out this brew into the glass, you can see it has a darker amber tone. In Mugi to Hop Aka, Sapporo tries to recreate an ale type beer in the third tier category. Let’s see how it tastes.
Brewed with caramelized malt, the toasty flavor and full-body is immediately apparent on the front end. The bitterness of the hops also comes through on the front. All these delicious flavors, however, dissipate quite quickly over the palate, leaving a watery finish with little impact.
I like what Sapporo is aiming for, but with so much flavor up front and a dry almost flavorless finish, Mugi to Hop Aka is just unbalanced. If you’re in Japan, you’ll have to give Sapporo Mugi to Hop Aka a try, just because it’s a limited production, and while it starts off delicious you might find yourself wanting a little more… maybe pick up a can of Yebisu to fill that desire.