Friday, 27 May 2011

Beer Of The Week: Malt Of The Rising Suntory

I have to admit, I'm not that great with Japanese beers. Most of the ones I've tried are the more common ones like Asahi, and although I visited the Sapporo factory in Tokyo once, that was before I could REALLY appreciate beer as it should be.

Anyway, this week's beer of the week is SUNTORY PREMIUM MALT beer, brought to you by the same guys who make Yamazaki and Hibiki whiskies:

Suntory is actually the fourth largest player in the Japanese beer industry, behind Sapporo, Asahi and Kirin, but apaprently, Premium Malt is now one of the top PREMIUM beers in Japan. It was launched here quite recently, just under a year ago, but it's not widely available - probably only in certain Japanese restaurants and shops.

If you happen to have a bottle or can at home, you should probably know that there is supposedly a special way to pour the beer. You have to pour it straight down first to generate a nice foamy head, then after it's settle somewhat, you pour the rest in gently via the side of the glass. This way, the head remains, and supposedly prevents the flavor of the beer from 'escaping' too quickly. If you have the special Suntory glass, even better, since the glass was designed to be the perfect vessel to serve Suntory beer.

I tried the beer with and without the special technique before, and the one done without was definitely flatter and less aromatic than the one that was served properly.

Anyway, I quite like the beer - it's got a nice, hoppy aromatic aroma that isn't TOO hoppy, and quite pleasant. On the palate, it's very refreshing, one of those beers that I just LOVE having upon coming home after a long day's work and during a hot day. And using ONLY premium malted barley, it's got a very distinct and nice malty flavor to it as well.

Definitely one of my favorite Japanese beers so far.

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