Kampai! Japanese Beer for Kids!

August 14, 2007 at 5:58 pm 1 comment

When I visited Tokyo and Kyoto with my husband, we noticed a fascination with neatness, smallness, and cuteness. At a corner grocery store in Kyoto, Asahi beer came in size small: 5 ounces (135 ml).

What we didn’t know at the time is that there is also beer for kids!


Don’t worry; this particular frosty beverage isn’t alcoholic. Apparently it tastes like fizzy apple juice. “Kidsbeer” was originally released in 2005 by the Tomomasu Company, and it quickly caught on. The advertising slogan? “Even kids cannot stand life unless they have a drink”(!). You can also buy Yoiko no Biiru, which means “Good Children’s Beer,” at toy stores.

Now at family gatherings, kids won’t feel left out when it’s time to raise a glass and say Kampai(“Cheers!”) With Yoiko no Biiru, they can join in with the rest of the group. Whether this will turn them into junior salarymen before their time — hopefully not — remains to be seen!

At first I thought children’s beer was a concept that would never fly in the U.S. Just like Christon Cafe, the Jesus-themed restaurant, it would offend too many people. But then I remembered that, once upon a time, candy cigarettes were pretty popular; and I certainly had my fair share of sparkling grape juice “champagne” at Thanksgiving when I was kid.

Maybe the two cultures aren’t so different, after all…

Sarah S.

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Entry filed under: Japanese Culture, Japanese Entertainment, Japanese Foods.

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August 2007


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