Japanese Name: サッポロ 百人のキセキ 至福のブラウンエール
Release: Aug. 5, 2014
Type: Japanese Beer (ビール)
Purchase Price: ￥237 @Sankus
Utilizing Facebook and limited online product sales, Sapporo created Hyakunin Biru Labo which means something like, “Beer Laboratory of the People.” With this project, every aspect of the beer from flavor to package design had input from thousands of beer lovers in Japan. From this collaboration was born Hyakunin no Kiseki Shifuku no Buraun Eeru, the name meaning “miracle of the masses, a euphoric brown ale.” It is an all malt ale crafted with aroma hops from Hallertau, Germany and American flavor hops. This beer clocks in at 7% ABV, which is unusual for Japanese beers outside of the new genre brews.
Pouring out Shifuku, you’ll notice the amber color and immediately get a waft of malt coming off the head. Your first gulp will be nutty and chewy, it’s definitely a full bodied beer. The bitterness starts up front and sticks around to the finish. You may notice some citrus and cinnamon notes on the back with well balanced acidity and tartiness grasping the throat.
I think that Hyakunin no Kiseki Shifuku no Brown Ale is proof that the bold flavors of craft beer are not just a one-off fad in the Japanese market place. You’re going to see a lot more full bodied beers from the Big 4 with bold flavors that to date have not been on the store shelves. Sapporo has done a wonderful job brewing Shifuku. It has incredible depth and complexity; it is a huge ale that really puts you in your place. If you find yourself in Japan, head to the nearest convenience store and pick this one up, it is a must drink. Shifuku no Brown Ale is quite possibly the finest macro beer ever to hit store shelves in Japan.