It has not been the best night in terms of random luck -- my iPhone had died and the craft beer bar was closed when we arrived after yakiniku -- but the silver lining is that I found craft beer cans at yet another Circle K in town. It seems the word is spreading. It's now up to three Circle K's here in Ise that are selling Yona Yona Ale and Ginga Kogen American Pale Ale. My post dead-phone stop into the Circle K nearest to my place turned out positive indeed.
My iPhone, meanwhile, is still looking very much dead.
But back to that American Pale Ale. Beer lovers know that the "American" in American Pale Ale refers to the style of pale ale -- in this case, a bitter type pale ale. I brought a few over to a poker game the other night and got some interesting reactions from the international crowd. But indeed it was the Americans who assumed American meant "watery" in this case. They seemed to think a Japanese brewer was trying to reproduce that ever-so-American Budweiser sensibility.
Between hands, I tried to explain that this was a Japanese craft brewer and that this beer was a special thing to find here in Ise. The Yona Yona was easier to sell, since its name and label make it stand out a bit, but even among American citizens craft beer is poorly understood.
I'll have to try harder to spread the word. Maybe I should have shared?