Japanese sake has something like ‘nouveau’ , for example ‘shinshu’ and ‘Hiya Oroshi’. They have their own special flavor and taste. I imagine that some Japanese thought that new wine has its own flavor and taste, like sake.
In the bubble economy at the end of 20th century, Beuajolais Nouveau was very popular. I myself bought one bottle or two every year. However, in these days with the downturn of Japanese economy and strong yen, it is rather just one of low cost alcohol, as you wrote. Even in my neighborhood supermarket store, plastic bottled 500ml Nouveau were sold for some hundreds yen, for this time of year only. It seems that we are susceptable to nice marketing…;)
Le Beaujolais Primeur est arrivé en Japon! And as every year, the Huffington Post and the Japan Times report about it. In particular the Huffington post portraits the event in Japan as extraordinary by concentrating on the “wine bath” in the Yunessun spa in Hakone, where people literally bath in Beaujolais.
Though this does seem extreme and a bit crazy, this is not the first time that American media have picked up the wine bath for their “Groundhog day” coverage; the Yunessun actually has their wine bath all year around, alongside with bathes like green tea, Japanese sake, chilli (!), charcoal and more. I’ve been there several times, it is really nice, when not too crowded.
That being said, I think places and events like the Yunessun are part of entertainment and distraction from the stress at work. Nonetheless, the Boujolais Nouveau import numbers (source) for 2011 are…
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