Matsumoto Traditional Bitter is a 4% British bitter from Matsumoto Brewery, based in Matsumoto, in Nagano, Japan. It’s part of their regular lineup and can be found both in bottles and on tap. Matsumoto Traditional Bitter is brewed to a traditional British recipe and uses imported malts and hops from the UK, though which ones are used are unknown at the time of writing.
Matsumoto Traditional Bitter Aroma and Taste
Ah! English bitters! How I once loathed thee but have come to love thee! A 4% beer that you can drink plenty without being hammered, something that so-called “session” beers in Japan need to take a hard long look at! How being in the UK once meant everything was either a lager or a bitter of some form. I loathed those days, but have come back to liking them, mainly due to the now huge variation of the styles and hops used.
Matsumoto Traditional Bitter poured out though like your typical British bitter – a deep amber ruby colour with a small amount of white head on top that faded fast to a few bubbles around the outside. There was a rich caramel malt aroma, along with an earthy hoppy aroma, ensuring that Matsumoto Brewery were doing the damndest to stick to the description of what a British bitter should be.
The beer started off with a subtle bitter flavour, that moved onto something more caramel and nutty, with some hints of earthy hops, with just an edge of butteriness to it. Which is where Matsumoto Traditional Bitter remained for the remainder of drinking. Matsumoto Traditional Bitter wasn’t trying to be anything more than a traditional bitter. No lemon or dank hopness to it. No American or new world influence. The caramel and nutty flavours stayed for a little bit during the aftertaste but not for log.
Matsumoto Traditional Bitter The Bottom Line
If you’ve never had a British bitter, and don’t want to travel too far to get one, Matsumoto Traditional Bitter is a good example of a long forgotten style.
Where to Buy Matsumoto Traditional Bitter
Matsumoto Traditional Bitter can be bought at the following places: