Is Japan The Next Craft Beer Frontier?

We have a long-documented love for many Japanese culinary traditions, from ramen bars and drawn-out omakase feasts to yakisoba and laser-cut nori rolls. It's a little unreal to think how Japan has influenced to way we eat. But the way we drink beer? Forget about it. Until recently, Japan had only a handful of breweries, and only big guns like Asahi, Sapporo and Suntory. If you've ever consumed any of those products, mostly while enjoying the aforementioned foodstuffs, you know how forgettable the brews really are.

But as NPR reveals in a deep dig, Japan is starting to shake their bland beer tradition with a handful of microbrews. In their piece they profile the Kiuchi Brewery, located 100 miles outside of Tokyo. They claim their product is up 40% year-over-year, and that the Japanese thirst for quality brew has never been stronger. Credit goes to pure water sources and a society that, well, treasures quality. But will it make an impact in the American import market? Only time will tell, but we'll be on the lookout for these suds and let you know.

Japanese Sake Makers Shake Off Tradition, Try Brewing Craft Beer via NPR.

Read more about Japanese food and drink on Food Republic: