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    • Spring
      • Eating Wild in Japan

        Eating Wild in Japan

        Winifred Bird's latest book is an introduction to the world of sansai (mountain vegetables) and foraging in Japan.
        Niseko flying Hokkaido

        Bird’s Eye View of Hokkaido

        Get a bird's eye view of Hokkaido with Ben Kerr, a Niseko-based pilot.

        Northern Tohoku’s Top 5 Spring Hikes

        Chase the cherry blossoms north and enjoy five of Tohoku’s best hikes this spring.

        Spring Escapes: Outdoor Activities in Japan

        Check out these spring escapes this season and enjoy outdoor activities throughout Japan.

        Haga Farm Spring Glamping in Tochigi

        Haga Farm and Glamping in Tochigi opened in August 2020, and it has quickly become a popular escape for Tokyoites.
    • Summer
      • Climbing Mt. Fuji Outdoor Japan

        Peaking in 2021: Climbing Mt. Fuji

        Thinking of climbing Mt. Fuji this summer? We talk to Mt. Fuji guides on best practices for scaling Japan's highest mountain.

        Japan Camping Guide

        Check out our picks all the way from Hokkaido to the Okinawa Islands and then plot your perfect Japan camping adventure.
        Japan's Digital Nomads Van Life in Japan

        Japan’s Digital Nomads

        Adventure couple Ruth Aisling and Bappa Shota explores Japan by van.
        Iriomote Yamaneko Outdoor Japan

        Iriomote’s Endangered Wildcats

        Iriomote Island, one of Japan's last untouched wild places, is home to the endangered yamaneko wildcat.
        Outdoor Japan Organic Market Online

        Market Watch: Summer Organics Delivered

        Go online shopping for organic vegetables and support local farmers throughout Japan.
    • Autumn
      • video

        Shikoku Road Trip: Kochi by Camper Van

        Mountainous forests and coastal towns dominate most of the prefecture, where visitors will find enterprising locals and nature guides working to revitalize their communities. Shikoku’s winding roads are best explored by car.
    • Winter
    • Near Tokyo
    • Near Kyoto
    • All Regions
    • Article Map
    • Ocean and Beach
      • Outdoor Japan Shimoda

        Blue Waves and Black Ships in Shimoda

        Shimoda may be famous for its white sandy beaches and surfing, but it also played a major role in shaping the Japan we know today.
        Iriomote Outdoor Japan

        Iriomote Activity Guide

        A guide to Iriomote's outdoors, hiking, diving, cultural experiences and accommodation.

        Spring Escapes: Outdoor Activities in Japan

        Check out these spring escapes this season and enjoy outdoor activities throughout Japan.

        Pacific Solo

        Preacher-tu...
    • River and Lake
      • Iriomote Yamaneko Outdoor Japan

        Iriomote’s Endanger...

        Iriomote Island, one of Japan's last untouched wild places, is home to the endangered yamaneko wildcat.
        Iriomote Outdoor Japan

        Iriomote Activity Guide

        A guide to Iriomote's outdoors, hiking, diving, cultural experiences and accommodation.
        Niseko flying Hokkaido

        Bird’s Eye View of Hokkai...

        Get a bird's eye view of Hokkaido with Ben Kerr, a Niseko-based pilot.

        Spring Escapes: Outdoor A...

        Check out these spring escapes this season and enjoy outdoor activities throughout Japan.
        video

        Shikoku Road Trip: Kochi ...

        Mountainous forests and coastal towns dominate most of the prefecture, where visitors will find enterprising locals and nature guides working to revitalize their communities. Shikoku’s winding roads are best explored by car.
    • Mountain and Land
    • Sky
    • Snow and Ice
      • hiroshima skiing osorakan snow parkvideo

        Hiroshima Skiing at Osorakan Snow Park

        Enjoy skiing and snowboarding just an hour from Hiroshima at Osorakan Snow Park. Every winter, people from Kansai and Kyushu flock to one of the region’s most popular ski resorts for winter fun.
    • Travel
      • Japan's Digital Nomads Van Life in Japan

        Japan’s Digital Nomads

        Adventure couple Ruth Aisling and Bappa Shota explores Japan by van.
        Iriomote Yamaneko Outdoor Japan

        Iriomote’s Endangered Wildcats

        Iriomote Island, one of Japan's last untouched wild places, is home to the endangered yamaneko wildcat.
        Eating Wild in Japan

        Eating Wild in Japan

        Winifred Bird's latest book is an introduction to the world of sansai (mountain vegetables) and foraging in Japan.
        Outdoor Japan Organic Market Online

        Market Watch: Summer Organics Delivered

        Go online shopping for organic vegetables and support local farmers throughout Japan.
        Outdoor Japan Kodo Bee Farm

        Honey Business in Tokushima

        Honeybees at Kodo Bee Farm thrive in Tokushima's rich nature and contribute to the local ecosystem while producing delicious honey.
    • Food and Drinks
      • Japan's Digital Nomads Van Life in Japan

        Japan’s Digital Nomads

        Adventure couple Ruth Aisling and Bappa Shota explores Japan by van.
        Iriomote Yamaneko Outdoor Japan

        Iriomote’s Endangered Wildcats

        Iriomote Island, one of Japan's last untouched wild places, is home to the endangered yamaneko wildcat.
        Eating Wild in Japan

        Eating Wild in Japan

        Winifred Bird's latest book is an introduction to the world of sansai (mountain vegetables) and foraging in Japan.
        Outdoor Japan Organic Market Online

        Market Watch: Summer Organics Delivered

        Go online shopping for organic vegetables and support local farmers throughout Japan.
        Outdoor Japan Kodo Bee Farm

        Honey Business in Tokushima

        Honeybees at Kodo Bee Farm thrive in Tokushima's rich nature and contribute to the local ecosystem while producing delicious honey.
    • Races and Events
      • Photo by Noriteru Ino

        2021 Summer Music Festivals in Japan

        Camp and listen to great music in the outdoors at these summer music festivals across Japan.
        Summer Events Fireworks Festivals in Japan

        2021 Fireworks Festivals in Japan

        Enjoy these fireworks festivals held throughout Japan this summer and autumn.
        Summer Festivals in Japan

        2021 Summer Festivals in Japan

        Enjoy these traditional matsuri festivals throughout Japan this summer.
        summer events omm lite and bike hakuba

        2021 Summer Events and Races in Japan

        Check out upcoming events and races held throughout Japan this summer and early fall.

Japan in Cider: Cider in a Click

While I am a proud perennial cider drinker, I will concede that autumn is certainly the season when cider’s magic is best experienced and energetically felt. Nature gives us the most colorful period of the year complete with apple harvest, savory foods, and that slight change in temperature and crispness in the air almost subliminally teasing you to seek out a pint of cider.

In Japan, however, that might not always be an easy task. While the amount of cider, both domestically produced and imported from overseas, has increased over the last few years, access to those ciders can be a downright challenge if you don’t know where to look and harder still if you can’t read Japanese. Even worse, what do you do if you don’t live within Kanto or Kansai proper—or anywhere near a cutting edge bottle shop? If you have a mobile phone or PC and access to the internet, online shopping is a practical way to go.

JAPANESE CIDERS

VinVie

VinVie is a winery and cidery in Matsukawa, Nagano Prefecture that launched in April 2020. In addition to making consistently good ciders from Japanese apples, they have also been innovative in using unconventional yeast strains, including one harvested from bumblebees and wasps, which gives their ciders an extra tart finish.

Their website is in Japanese, but finding their ciders is quite easy. Either search for the Japanese word shiidoru (シードル) on the page or browse the pictures until you see the bottles with English on the labels.

Ringo School Cidery 

Ringo School Cidery in Iizuna, Nagano Prefecture, also launched in 2020. They’re another cider maker incorporating creative practices like opening themselves up to the public, who can register for a cider making class and make their own cider. With rotating teachers and apple varieties, they are continually offering something different. 

Their website is also only in Japanese, but finding their ciders is a cinch and a simple Google Translate will tell you the apples used to make each cider.

IMPORTED CIDERS

Antenna America

The undisputed champion of craft beer imports to Japan, Antenna America jumped into the cider game seriously last year. They currently advertise three well-known American brands, Shacksbury from Vermont, JK’s Farmhouse from Michigan, and ACE Ciders from California.

Their website has enough English to make navigation painless and plenty of delicious ciders to choose from.

Japan Cider Market

Japan Cider Market is the country’s first online shop that actually specializes in ciders and cider-related goods. The shop boasts a selection of some of the world’s best ciders from countries including the UK (Tom Oliver’s Fine Cider), France (Wignac), and Australia (Willie Smith’s), and will soon offer delights from Luxembourg and Canada.

The website is in English and Japanese, and most orders are delivered the next day.

You can also find cider on the the usual online outlets like Amazon and Rakuten, but the sites above are managed by folks who care about and are experienced with cider. They can even answer questions you might have about their products.

Read More Stories from the Autumn 2020 Issue

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