Watered-Down Whiskey? You Bet


Find beer too bitter, whiskey too strong and want to try something new? Try new canned whiskey and water, easy to drink with your evening meal at home, at parties or even on the bullet train.

That is the sales pitch at the start of the latest battle in a multimillion-dollar war for Japan’s drink market.

The country’s two whiskey producers this month launched five kinds of whiskey and water--called mizuwari --that aim at wresting a share of the market from beer and sake.

“Young people like beer because it’s cheap and not too strong, so our canned mizuwari is perfect for them, especially for those who don’t like beer’s bitter taste,” said Hisashi Kaburagi, general manager of marketing at Nikka Whisky.