Japanese Name: ザ・プレミアム・モルツ〈初摘みホップ〉
Release: Nov. 25, 2014
Type: Japanese Beer (ビール)
Purchase Price: ￥203 @Aeon
This year, Suntory has decided to get into the freshly picked hops game by releasing Hatsu Tsumami Hop in The Premium Malt’s line. This limited production all malt beer is made with freshly picked Saaz Fine Aroma hops from the Czech Republic in addition to Diamond malt and Suntory’s spring water. I’m really excited to taste this one, let’s see how this stacks up Suntory’s rivals.
Be sure to pour the glass with a nice head to bring out the hoppy aroma and bitterness. If you’ve had other fresh hop beers, this one will be somewhat unexpected. It doesn’t have the fresh green grassy element to it. Hatsu Tsumami does have a nice full bodied flavor and creamy mouthfeel. It’s very well rounded with its hoppy bitterness and malt flavors showing off from the tip of the tongue to the back of the throat.
Hatsu Tsumami is a very good beer, indeed. It has a wonderful depth and roundness that make it a joy to drink. However, given the label I would deduct points in the “fresh hop” area, at least for what I’ve grown accustomed to. As far as a limited production beer, this one is standard fare for Suntory. Hastu Tsumami Hop is excellent drinking, but lacking in the “wow” department.