Kirin Chuuhai Frozen Unriped Plums /キリン チューハイ氷結青ウメ

Alcohol: 5% (17.5 ml)
Quantity: 350 ml
Sugar:  24.85 g
Calories: 199.5 kcal
Price: MSRP 148 yen (129 yen at Kakuyasu)
Official Site: http://www.kirin.co.jp/brands/hyoketsu/index.html

Kirin’s retooled their plum chuuhai by fruit juice from unripened plums. The net effect is that their ume chuuhai now tastes a bit more sour than before, though I don’t think much has really changed. The Kirin Hyouketsu Ume is still rather light on body and taste but still high in sugar and calories while only offering five percent alcohol. I don’t hate this, but I don’t like it much either.

 

Kirin Chuuhai Frozen Gentle Fruit 3% Sicilian Lemon Limited Edition / キリンチューハイ氷結やさしい果実の3%シチリア産レモン 期間限定

Alcohol: 3% (10.5 ml)
Quantity: 350 ml
Sugar:  21.35 g
Calories: 150.5 kcal
Price: MSRP 148 yen (129 yen at Kakuyasu)
Official Site: http://www.kirin.co.jp/brands/hyoketsu/index.html

Kirin’s Gentle series returns with Sicilian Lemon, not a flavor I’m too hot about, and delivers gentle, lemony goodness, that tastes like in has no alcohol at all.

Kirin Hyouketsu Sparkling Chardonnay / キリンチューハイ 氷結シャルドネスパークリング

Alcohol: 5% (17.5 ml)
Quantity: 350 ml
Sugar:  21.7g
Calories: 189 kcal
Price: MSRP 141 yen (108 yen at AEON)
Official Site: http://www.kirin.co.jp/brands/hyoketsu/index.html

This sweet chuuhai from Kirin really does recreate the taste of chardonnay white wine (even though its base is vodka) by its clever use of white grape juice for flavoring. It’s a bit high in sweetness, but with 5% alcohol it will get the job done, and of course, it is cheaper than actual white wine.

Kirin Frozen Chuuhai Limited Edition Apple Nouveau /キリン氷結チューハイ時間限定2011東北産りんご

Alcohol: 5% (17.5 ml)
Quantity: 350 ml can
Calories: 203 calories
Sugar: 25.9 grams
Price: 148 yen (129 yen at Kakuyasu)
Official Site: http://www.kirin.co.jp/brands/hyoketsu/index.html

This is a light and crisp apple-flavored chuuhai using apples from the Tohoku region of Japan – the region that suffered the most damage from the March 11th, 2011 earthquake. Usually, apple chuuhai are around 3% alcohol, but this one gives that extra 2% to help you get your buzz on. It is a bit high on the calories, however – I could do without a lot of the sugar here. But overall, it’s a pretty solid and flavorful limited edition chuuhai.

Kirin Frozen Chuuhai Strong Ripe Grapefruit /キリン氷結チューハイストロング完熟グレープフルーツ

Alcohol: 8% (28 ml)
Quantity: 350 ml
Sugar:  1.4-4.2 g
Calories: 175 kcal
Price: MSRP 148 yen (124 at Kakuyasu)
Official Site: http://www.kirin.co.jp/brands/hyoketsu/index.html

Using acesulfame potassium as an artificial sweetener, Kirin’s strong grapefruit doesn’t taste bitter at all. If anything, this chuuhai tastes like grapefruit-flavored water, and is sweeter than Suntory’s Strong -196 version.

 

Kirin Chuuhai Frozen Yuzu /キリン チューハイ氷結ゆず

Alcohol: 5% (17.5 ml)
Quantity: 350 ml
Sugar:  20.3 g
Calories: 182 kcal
Price: MSRP 148 yen (129 yen at Kakuyasu)
Official Site: http://www.kirin.co.jp/brands/hyoketsu/index.html

I have to admit I have a love/hate relationship with yuzu. The citrius fruit is sweet and it is sour as hell. But it’s that sweetness that makes me go back to yuzu time and time again, unlike shikuwasu, which I only sample again every now and then to remind myself why I don’t like it. Yuzu’s like the bad lover you know will break your heart again, but you just can’t say no. At least I can say here that Kirin’s Hyouketsu Yuzu has much more personality and charm than the Ume. Ya know what would be really awesome? Suntory Zero Dry Yuzu. I wish they’d get to work on that.

Kirin Chuuhai Frozen Ume /キリン チューハイ氷結うめ

Alcohol: 5% (17.5 ml)
Quantity: 350 ml
Sugar:  25.2 g
Calories: 203 kcal
Price: MSRP 148 yen (129 yen at Kakuyasu)
Official Site: http://www.kirin.co.jp/brands/hyoketsu/index.html

Plum is one of my favorite flavors, and I love umeshu (plum wine) but can’t stomach drinking much of it because of its extremely high sugar content. I’m always interested in new plum-flavored chuuhai, so I immediately grabbed the Kirin Hyouketsu Ume when I first saw it. This is very light – too light in my opinion. There’s no depth of flavor here – it merely tastes like plum-flavored water, but it still has a very high level of sugar. I’m disappointed and prefer the Suntory Double Plum Zero Dry.