As you sip a satisfyingly cold and refreshing drink, you cannot help but wonder what the most popular beverages are in Japan. From traditional teas to modern twists on classic cocktails, the Land of the Rising Sun offers various drinks for every taste.
So what are the most popular Japanese drinks? Ahead, we will explore the most famous Japanese drinks and the unique cultural experiences that come with them.
7 Popular Japanese Drinks
What are the most popular Japanese drinks? From sweet bubble tea to light chuhai, here are the seven popular modern and traditional Japanese drinks!
Bubble tea, or pearl or boba milk tea, is actually a Taiwanese tea-based drink, but it has gained immense popularity worldwide, including in Japan. It is made with tea, milk, sugar, and chewy tapioca pearls, giving the drink a unique textured experience.
Bubble tea has various flavors, including fruit, milk, palm sugar, chocolate, and many more.
Green tea originated in China and has been widely consumed for thousands of years. Its popularity has spread worldwide, including in Japan, making it the second most popular tea after black tea.
Unlike other teas, green tea is made from unfermented leaves, which gives it a unique taste and a lighter color. It’s packed with antioxidants and nutrients, making it a healthy drink to promote relaxation.
Ramune is a popular Japanese carbonated soft drink that comes in a Codd-neck bottle with various flavors. This thirst-quencher is made with water, high fructose corn syrup, and natural and artificial flavors.
The unique selling point of this famous Japanese drink is the marble that seals the top of the bottle, which is pushed down using a plunger. The marble then becomes trapped inside, creating a satisfying fizzing sound and releasing the carbonation. You can easily find it in vending machines or convenience stores in Japan.
Cream soda in Japan is a delicious ice cream float made with melon-flavored soda, known as “melon soda”, and crowned with a scoop of creamy vanilla ice cream. This refreshing beverage is often drunk during hot summers.
Shochu is a Japanese distilled spirit from various sources, such as sweet potatoes, barley, rice, or buckwheat. Unlike other spirits, shochu has a lower alcohol content, typically 25% to 35%.
This drink has been enjoyed for hundreds of years and is commonly served straight, on the rocks, mixed with hot or cold water, or as a base for cocktails.
Amazake is a traditional Japanese drink from fermented rice, koji, and water. It is a low-alcohol drink that contains around 1-3% alcohol by volume.
It has a creamy, velvety texture and a slightly sweet taste with a subtle tangy flavor. Amazake is often enjoyed during the winter months as a warming drink or as a substitute for dessert due to its natural sweetness.
Chuhai is a popular Japanese alcoholic beverage that is similar to a cocktail. Made with shochu, sparkling water, and flavored syrups or juices, it has various fruity, refreshing flavors that make it a perfect drink for hot summer days.
It has a lower alcohol content compared to other spirits and cocktails, making it a popular alternative for those who prefer milder drinks.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the most popular Japanese soft drink?
One of the most famous drinks in Japan is ramune, a Japanese carbonated soft drink that comes in a Codd-neck bottle with various flavors.
What is the signature Japanese drink?
The signature Japanese drink is sake or rice wine, an alcoholic beverage made of water, fermented rice, koji mold, and yeast.
What is the most popular cold drink in Japan?
Japan’s most popular cold drink is probably the iconic carbonated soft drink, ramune. It is often sold in glass bottles sealed with a marble, adding to the novelty and fun of drinking it. Other popular options include green tea and matcha-flavored drinks.
As you can tell, there is definitely no lack of flavorful drinks to sip and savor in Japan. From the go-to Japanese green tea to popular alcoholic drinks like sake and shochu, you will find a unique taste that appeals to your palette.
Every traditional Japanese drink has its own special history and Japanese culture, and no matter which one you try first, don’t forget to enjoy the experience — these famous Japanese drinks are best savored with your favorite popular Japanese foods. Drink up! Kanpai!