So this is the second beer I’ll be reviewing from Yatsugatake, and can you believe this one is also not really worth your time? I do hate to do this, as I want to encourage more people to buy me beers as souvenirs. But as long as there are people wanting to buy souvenir beers, there will be some unscrupulous businesses eager to foist a limp excuse for a beer on them under the thin veil of it being “local” or somehow made with nearby ingredients or themed around some local legend.
So, this time around, we have a dunkel all bedecked in some ridiculous American football side-story that doesn’t seem to have any connection to a small mountain resort in central Chubu. Let’s pretend to wonder if this beer will be bad or not!
Yatsugatake Touchdown Frontier Dunkel Aroma and Taste
Yatsugatake Touchdown Frontier Dunkel pours out depressingly (yes that is a way a beer can pour out, trust me. I’ve drunk Ryuhyo Draft), and pretty much headless. It smells kinda malty, as a dunkel should, but if dunkel is basically a “dark lager”, then this definitely veers towards the lager end of the spectrum. It’s as weak as hamster piss. There’s barely any depth to this beer at all, and it’s pretty much gone before I can even think about an aftertaste.
It makes Super Dry taste like a triple IPA in comparison. I’ve drunk tea stronger than this. And not strong tea, either. A cup of tea where I forgot how long I’d left the teabag in and took it out too early and when I put the milk in it turned a disappointing grey, the colour of a television tuned to a dead channel.
So, now that I’m done pissing on the beer, let’s turn up the pompous elitism to 11 and have a go at the brewery!
Yatsugatake was formed in 1997, just before the bubble burst. So the owners must have poured colossal amounts of money into it to keep it alive during the craft beer wilderness years. Maybe one way they saved money was to make bare-bones recipes with hardly any flavour. Maybe to still qualify as a brewery they just had to plop out a batch of sub-standard brown water once every financial year to get their grubby hands on a new license. Whatever. This is the result. A beer bizarrely branded as “Touchdown” with a little bio on the label of a guy called the “father of football”, Paul Rusch, who first introduced American football to Japan. If you’ve ever somehow stumbled across a hand-egg game on TV here, you’ll see that old Professor Rusch didn’t exactly do a very good job- there are probably more people reading this than there are at your average match.
Yatsugatake Touchdown Frontier Dunkel The Bottom Line
It seems that Rusch is an appropriate mascot of Yatsugatake, as this beer deserves your attention as much as Japanese American Football does.
Where to Buy Yatsugatake Touchdown Frontier Dunkel
Yatsugatake Touchdown Frontier Dunkel can be bought online at the following places: