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January 1 2011

Top 5 Japanese Daisans (Third-category beer)

After ranking my Top 5 Japanese beers and Top 5 Japanese Happoshus here are my Top 5 Japanese Daisans.
Daisans are very low malt content alcoholic drinks (sometimes called “Third-Category Beers” or “Liqueurs“).
Japanese tax on alcohol varies depending on the malt content for some reason, and this type of drink has become very popular in the past few years as it has a very low malt content (they have to have less than 50%) they are much cheaper than regular beers and even Happoshus.
More information about this tax system can be found in my previous posts :
What is Happoshu? and Daisan to Face a Tax Hike?.
When I first tried Daisans in Japan, 4-5 years ago, I was shocked at how bad they tasted. But recently there has been some passable “beer-like drinks” coming out (or perhaps my tastes have changed along with my budget)?
Many daisans are more drinkable than happoshus in fact (which should technically be nearer to beers in content than daisans).
I mean, some Daisans are made out of corn and peas instead of barley and malt!

Out of all the Daisans I’ve tried this far, here are my Top 5:

at No. 5
Neu Welt Bergen Brau

Neu Welt Bergen Brau

This is actually from Korea but is sold in a large Japanese supermarket chain, and may be just for the Japanese market. It’s very cheap at only ¥79 (less than $1).
There are a lot of Korean Daisans on the market recently, one of the reasons for the governments suggested tax revisions I think.
Full Review: Neu Welt Bergen Brau
at No. 4
Super Prime Brown Roast

Super Prime Brown Roast

Another one from Korea, this I found in my local off-licence and I believe is made specifically for that off-licence chain. Suprisingly tastes like an English bitter or ale, and is very cheap. Can’t complain.
Full Review : Super Prime Brown Roast
at No. 3
Kirin 1000 Endless Clear

Kirin 1000 Endless Clear

According to the can this has The Benefit of Minerals which is nice. It’s also one of the most drinkable daisans I’ve tried and I buy a case a month to stock up my fridge with.
Full Review: Kirin 1000 Endless Clear
at No. 2
Suntory Kohaku No Zeitaku

Suntory Kohaku No Zeitaku

This comes out every winter from Suntory and is made with Aromatic Hops from Kyoto
It has a mellow, dark taste and is definitely worth trying.
Full Review: Suntory Kohaku No Zeitaku (The Luxury of Amber)

and at No. 1
Apple and Pale Ale

Apple and Pale Ale

This is a flavoured Pale Ale from Hokkaido Beer and is basically like a fizzy apple juice with some spice. Excellent.
Full Review: Apple and Pale Ale

So these are my top 5 Japanese Daisans (Third-Category Beers) (so far).
Have to wait and see what happens with the tax on these drinks as if they get more expensive they could well disappear from the market.

1 Comment »

  1. […] of it on Beers of Japan from 2010). Reviewing it myself the other day, I found it to be an okay daisan, a bit flabby and flat, with not much flavourwise, except a slight taste of malt and a very subtle […]

    Pingback by Japanese Autumn Beers 2011 | Wine, Beer, Sake, Whiskey Blog at MoIppai — September 26, 2011 @ 11:00 pm

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