Here are some recent alcohol-related news stories from the land of the rising sun.
First off, Hokkaido’s wacky Abashiri brewery has made blue beer using water from melted icebergs drifting over from Russia, so you can drink away the blues with blue beer.
Okhotsk Blue is the latest addition to a line-up which already includes red beer (made with fruit extracts) and green beer (made with seaweed. Eww!)
Knock back a few pints of Abashiri’s brews, and you’ll be spewing all the colours of the rainbow into the sink the next morning.
But don’t run into trouble with the law while glugging too much Abashiri beer, or you might end up in Abashiri Prison. Yikes!
Meanwhile, Kirin have launched Cola Shock Zero, a sugar-free version of their hit alcoholic cola, Cola Shock. Zero is pretty good (therein lies the “shock”), and it’s certainly a vast improvement for anyone who doesn’t feel like drifting into a diabetic coma as they drink.
News for wine fans- a Japanese version “Sideways”, the 2004 comedy set in the Californian wine country, has been released in Japan.
A rare case of Japan remaking a Hollywood film, rather than the other way round, it’s set in the Napa valley, and stars Rinko Kikuchi of “Babel”.
Metropolis Magazine think it’s “actually a pretty good film”, but Paul Giametti, the star of the original, is none-too-impressed. He turned down a cameo in the film, saying “my career hasn’t hit that low yet. I thought, ‘What am I gonna play – the sushi chef or something?'” He also said of Fumiyo Kohinata, the actor playing his role, “They got a strange, little troll to play me.” Talk about the pot calling the kettle black!
I hate 99% of remakes, though (including the Hollywood ones), so I’m inclined to agree that it is likely to be rubbish.
Finally, Suntory Whisky have teamed up with Tower Records for a campaign called No Music, No Whisky.
Presumably this means that “whisky is worthless without the accompaniment of music”. Which is a much better advertisment for Tower Records than it is for Suntory whiskey, if you think about it. Unless they mean “you cannot enjoy music unless you’re drinking whisky,” which sounds less like an advertising campaign and more like something a homeless Scottish alcoholic might bark at passers by.
The TV commericals star well-known Japanese musicians, such as Ryuichi Sakamoto. Here’s one of the more recent ads, featuring a pair of ska musicians.
The phrase “No music, no whisky” is, of course, a spin on Tower’s “No music, no life” slogan (which is a tad insensitive to deaf people, don’t you think?!)