Kunitachi Aki no Awai is a 6% American-Belgian IPA from Kunitachi Brewery, based in Kunitachi, in Tokyo, Japan. It’s part of their regular lineup, and can be found in both bottles and on tap. Kunitachi Aki no Awai is brewed using five different hops : American Simcoe, German Hallertau Blanc, Mosaic, Cryo Mosaic, and French Barbe Rouge. What makes this an American-Belgian IPA I hear you ask? Well that’s a good question – it uses hops that are usually associated with an American IPA – in spite of the German and French nature – but then uses a Belgian yeast to produce some of the flavours associated with a Belgian beer. The name “Aki no Awai” roughly translates to “between Autumn”
Kunitachi Aki no Awai : At A Glance
- Alcohol : 6%
- Style : American-Belgian IPA
- IBU : Unknown
- Hops : American Simcoe, German Hallertau Blanc, Mosaic, Cryo Mosaic, and French Barbe Rouge.
- Availability : Autumn Seasonal
- Size : 350 ml bottle
- Price : From 600 yen
- On Sale : From September 2021
- Notable Aromas : Plum and raisin from the Belgian yeast along with a dusting of clove. Some residual berry aromas, alongside caramel from the malt.
Kunitachi Aki no Awai : Aroma and Taste
Kunitachi Aki no Awai poured out a ruby brown colour with a small, slightly off-white head on top that left some streaks down the side of the glass. Making an American Belgian IPA is a bold choice – do you want the hoppy punch to shine through, or the yeast profile to dominate? With Kunitachi Aki no Awai, it looks like they went for the latter as the dominating aroma was a yeasty one of raisins and plums, and some hints of clove spice and a lack of citrus aroma. There was some jammy berry like flavour to the beer but it was faint and was only present after having drunk the beer and smelling the glass.
Kunitachi Aki no Awai had a body that was very similar to the nose, but had the addition of a slight hop bitterness that came through, though it was soon dominated by the yeast profile of raisins and plums, and the spiciness of the clove. The malts brought a light caramel flavour to the beer, with a faint alcohol heat when Kunitachi Aki no Awai had warmed up. The aftertaste was more of the same, with the lingering yeast profile being the strongest flavour to note.
Between Two Beer Cultures
The word “Awai” translates to “between things” or “between concepts”; “Autumn Awai” is between the seasons “summer to autumn, autumn to winter”.
The beer is an American Belgian IPA to show the influence of both beer cultures on the current beer climate.
Kunitachi Aki no Awai : The Bottom Line
While trying to straddle to beer cultures is applaudable, Kunitachi Aki no Awai ended up more towards the Belgian side. Not a bad thing by any means in my books as it is a good beer, but those wanting something hoppy may be left disappointed.
Kunitachi Aki no Awai : Where to Buy It
Kunitachi Aki no Awai can be bought online at the following places: