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Tokyo Jizake Strolling (Self-Containment Mood)

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Tokyo Jizake Strolling (Self-Co... Tokyo Jizake Strolling (Self-Co...
By Ryuji Takahashi

Currently, the impact of COVID-19 Coronavirus is felt worldwide as many regions are self-confined to their homes. The virus is surely a serious problem not to be taken lightly, for which we cannot do much except to pray for the doctors and hope for the best as we take precautions like gargling, thorough hand-washing, etc. Many Japanese corporations instructed employees not to attend seminars or parties where ten or more people gather, which needless to say, prevents attendance at Japanese sake events and other events where an unknown number of people gather. No one can risk exposure to the Coronavirus by toasting with sake, so self-containment is the obviously correct measure to take. However, our organizers who proposed the sake events are troubled.
The venue was secured, the fliers were distributed, tickets were sold, and yet, the virus caused cancellations. It would be easier to accept if all attendees cancelled, yet only half cancelled, leaving the organizers pondering whether or not to proceed with the sake event. Our sake shop was also involved in organizing the event, yet the numerous cancellations left only several people still willing to attend. However, due to the passionate pleas to hold the event from the remaining customers still willing to attend, we changed the sake event to a dinner event with a sake brewery to welcome these guests. We invited Aichi Brewery from Aichi District, Shiga Prefecture to come and promote how the flavor of the same type of new sake can change dramatically depending on the tank used.
Sake favored by sake breweries may not always be popular among the general public. Therefore, understanding the gap between the sake producer and consumer awareness is a meaningful purpose to hold this dinner event. Cancelling the sake event would mean the loss of an opportunity to research sake completed by sake brewers (new products). Producing sake that sells require marketing research. To lose the opportunity for this research could deal a huge blow to the sake brewers as well. Currently, customers are not eating out at restaurants in Japan, rumored to close and incur significant losses during the cherry-blossom viewing season, when restaurants normally make great money. Similarly, sake shops are also hit by less business transactions with restaurants. Breweries will also feel this fiscal impact as well.
Even when the restaurant industry returns to business as usual, their business will still be impacted if sake shops and breweries are still closed. Currently, I’m sorry to say to these restaurants that we consumers have no choice but to drink sake at home. The demand among younger generations and female consumers to drink sake at home is recently declining. Under these circumstances, why not rediscover the joy of drinking sake at home? Purchasing your favorite type of sake bottle, sake, appetizers, and enjoying your sake leisurely at home while watching TV is fun. Novels containing scenes where sake is consumed can also stimulate one’s appetite to keep drinking. It will take a long time for sake breweries, sake shops, and restaurants to return to business as usual. However, please be careful with your health, pray, and enjoy your sake at home.



東京地酒散歩(自粛ムード)

 今、世界中でコロナウイルスの影響で外出自粛のムードになっている。確かに安易に考えてはいけない問題であり、医者に頑張ってもらうしかなく、我々はうがいや手洗いなどの防衛策を行っていくしかない状態だ。日本企業の多くが、10名以上のセミナーや宴会に出席禁止の指示を社員に出しており、日本酒イベントなど不特定多数の人間が集まる趣味のイベントは以ての外である。日本酒で乾杯と言ってコロナウイルスにかかっては世話ない訳で自粛は当然の判断だと思う。しかし、既にイベントを打ち出していた主催者は困っている。会場を押さえ、チラシも配り、チケットも売れている状態でキャンセル続出。いっその事なら全員キャンセルならまだ諦めもつくが、半分キャンセルなどはイベントを実施するか悩むところである。実は当店もイベントを打っていたがキャンセル続出で参加者が一桁台になったしまった。しかし、残ったお客様から熱烈な開催要望があった為、イベントというよりも酒蔵との食事会と銘打って数名の酒蔵会を行った。今回は滋賀県愛知郡の愛知酒造に上京してもらい、同スペックの新酒がタンクにより味が大きく変わるというのを参加者に知ってもらう会とした。酒蔵が気に入っている酒が必ずしも一般のお客様にウケるわけでは無く、造り手と消費者の意識のズレを知る意味でも今回の会は意味のある物となった。日本酒イベントが無くなるということは、酒蔵的にも出来あがった酒(新商品)などのリサーチの場を失う事になる。売れる酒を造るにはマーケティングリサーチは必須だろう。その場が無くなるというのは、酒蔵的にも打撃なのではなかろうか。現状、
飲食店は客足が遠のいていて、花見時期に大きく儲ける飲食店などは閉店してしまうかもしれないと言われている。それに付随して、酒販店も飲食店との取引量が減ってしまう。そしてそのしわ寄せは酒蔵にも来るだろう。
飲食店が通常に戻ったとしても、酒販店や酒蔵がクローズしていては意味がない。現状は飲食店には申し訳ないが、酒は家で飲むしかない。若者や女性の家呑みの需要が減っている昨今。この様な時だからこそ、新たに家で酒を飲む楽しさを再探求してみてはいかがだろうか。好きなタイプの酒器を買い、好きな酒の肴を用意し、好きな酒をテレビでも観ながらダラダラ飲むのも楽しいものである。酒を飲むシーンが出てくる小説を読むのも活字が肴になり酒が進む。酒蔵・酒販店・飲食店の全てが元通りになるには、まだまだ時間がかかるだろう。しかし、今は健康に気を付けて家呑みしながら祈るしかない。
#SelfContainment #COVID19 #Coronavirus

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