Japanese Name: サントリー 冬の芳醇
Release: Sep. 30, 2014
Type: Happousei （発泡性）
Purchase Price: ￥105 @Aeon
While the other major brewers have chosen to release beers from previous years, Suntory has chosen to brew something new, continuing on its rampage to world domination. In contrast to last year’s wheat beer, well brew, Suntory created a more robust lager style new genre touting a double dose of aroma hops. Fuyu no Houjun, meaning mellow winter, incorporates late hopping and decoction mashing to increase its flavor and aroma.
Poured into the glass Fuyu no Houjun has a wonderful golden color and the double dose of aroma hops is immediately present on the nose. The first gulp shows the depth and full body right from the start with lots of malt flavor imparted from the decoction mashing. The bitterness also kicks in right off the bat and hangs around like an old pal keeping you company.
Suntory’s Fuyu no Houjun is the clear winner of the 2014 winter new genre brews. Once again Suntory has shown you don’t need to shell out your hard earned cash to get a decent beverage here in Japan. Although Fuyu no Houjun doesn’t have the true malty depth of flavor you’d expect in a “real” Japanese beer, it does have enough flavor and bitterness to satisfy your beer craving.