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Tokyo - Most Japanese consumers are still not classical wine drinkers

by MiBD wine analytics May 06, 2020

After effects of the earthquake and the following nuclear power station issue, change happened

Before, people would go out in the expensive Tokyo city center, order an expensive bottle of wine and get the last train home. After the earthquake, there were no trains, so people finished work at 4:30 pm and headed out to the suburbs and drank more casually at local bars where cheaper wines were served. That habit has stuck, so there is now more local drinking and more casual drinking.

We analyzed wines listed in the restaurants of Tokyo, Japan - the leading white wine players

1. Louis Latour
2. Domaine Leflaive
3. Domaine des Comtes Lafon
4. Etienne Sauzet
5. Cloudy Bay

6. William Fevre
7. Trimbach
8. Chateau d'Yquem
9. Hugel & Fils
10. Planeta

11. Baron de Ladoucette
12. Francois Carillon
13. Marcel Deiss
14. Chateau de Beaucastel
15. Didier Dagueneau

Interestingly, Japan is widely considered to be Asia’s most mature market, but wine drinking has not become as mainstream as people might believe. Most Japanese consumers are still not classical wine drinkers; by and large, the occasions to drink wine are not that commonplace. Yet it is still an attractive market in many ways; Japanese sommeliers are among the best in the world. Sophisticated Japanese customers give a lot. Overall, it’s a good market for lesser-known wine regions and niche producers; however, the occasions that merit consumption arise less frequently than in the USA and Europe.

 

1. Bordeaux
2. Chablis
3. Meursault
4. Alsace Riesling
5. Sancerre

6. Marlborough
7. Meursault 1er cru
8. Napa Valley
9. Chablis 1er cru
10. Corton-Charlemagne

11. California
12. Yamanashi
13. Puligny-Montrachet 1er cru
14. Alsace Gewurztraminer
15. Puligny-Montrachet

Japan as a wine market is slowly developing and, in common with other nations where wine consumption is not traditional, it has been starting with headline countries such as France and globally recognized brands. Yet consumers are becoming more and more sophisticated and looking to discover new regions and new wines. Concurrently, Japan is quite a trend-driven market and Japanese consumers are quick to embrace the new and exciting. Women are, in many cases, the decision makers when it comes to wine and wine consumption. In addition, Sake is becoming more and more internationally recognized, which has an knock-on effect on the self-sight of Japanese consumers in relation to wine consumption.*

Source: MiBD. Store check program 2019 in 200 restaurants / 25,551 offers. Top listed wines 750ml.

Excerpt from Ranking report. To learn more click here

*Meiningers Wine Business International