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Prefecture Focus : Craft Beers of Aomori

by BeerTengoku Writer
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Welcome to a new 47 part series that focuses on craft beer in each prefecture of Japan. In each installment, the aim is look at how craft beer came to be in that area of Japan, how it developed, and then look at some of the local breweries that a noteworthy. With over 600 breweries at the end of 2022, not every single brewery will be covered. Some will be known to people, some will be contentious, and some may be new to you.

Notable Breweries in Aomori

While this is not a comprehensive list of breweries in Aomori, it’s a list of breweries that are notable in Aomori. For long time readers of BeerTengoku, some will not be a surprise to see on this list, in spite of the strong dislike for them, but are included because they have become synonymous with craft beer from Aomori.

Aomori Ji-Beer

Aomori Ji-Beer is a microbrewery located in Uekita, Aomori, Japan. Like many other breweries in Japan, Aomori Ji-Beer started out as a sake brewer and branched out into beer production soon after the Japanese government reduced the requirements for beer production in 1994. They also have the honour of being the first temple in Japan to have a brewery on site as well. To say they lent into using local ingredients would be an understatement for they have made beers with apples, grapes, but also black garlic.

Aomori Ji-Beer Logo

Be Easy Brewing

Be Easy Brewing is a craft beer brewery located in Hirosaki, Aomori. Be Easy Brewing first started brewing in 2016, and since then, have focussed heavily on draft beers, though at the time of writing, there has been no foray into either bottles or cans. The owner and head brewer, Gareth Burns, first came over to Japan with the US armed forces before leaving and coming back again to set up shop. One of the aims of Be Easy Brewing is to increase Aomori’s presence in the craft beer market, while another aim is to make great beer – perhaps the most important of the two.

Be Easy Brewing Logo
Picture courtesy of Be Easy Brewing

Oirase Brewery

Oirase Brewing Company is a craft beer brewery located near Oirase river, in Aomori, Japan. Founded in 1997, just after the relaxation of the beer production laws, Oirase Brewing Company has been using local mountain river water from Mount Hakkoda and traditional Czech brewing techniques to brew four different types of beer. In 2021, the company was sold off and the brewery underwent massive regeneration before reopening in 2022 under new management.

Oirase Brewing Company Logo

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