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Kirin Ichiban beer is the ideal accompaniment to traditional Japanese dishes

Major culinary awards aside, the best gauge of a restaurant’s standard is typically how successful it is at catering to native consumers of the cuisine it focuses on. For example, a sure sign that a Japanese restaurant is top-notch would be stepping through its doors to find tables filled with Japanese customers thoroughly enjoying themselves.

Dashi Master Marusaya is one such establishment. Located along Robertson Quay, someone not privy to its reputation within would pass by the nondescript curtained doorways without much thought. Yet, take a chance on it during a weekend evening, and you’d see many Japanese tourists and expatriates dining there, indulging in its signature shabu shabu, as well as the other dashi-based, traditional Japanese dishes on the menu. If you turn your head every time you hear a call of “Kanpai!”, chances are, there are a few pints of Kirin Ichiban knocked together in celebration.

Kirin Ichiban beer is a commonplace sight in most renowned Japanese diners not simply because it is a native brew. The smooth, refreshing pale lager is made with 100 percent premium barley malt, produced by a first press brewing method, which channels the full essence of the refined barley malt into the glass of Kirin Ichiban beer. It also has a pleasant, slightly savoury taste that with a velvety finish that never overpowers, but enhances the flavours found in the food one eats.

To have a glass of Kirin Ichiban beer at Dashi Master Marusaya is to enjoy how the refined beer elevates the umami quality of the housemade dashi broth the restaurant is so famous for. The broth, made from bonito aged for two years instead of the usual one year, is a fixture in a majority of its dishes. With a glass of Kirin Ichiban, the clear soup is instantly elevated into a warm, comforting experience that will have you going back to the combination for more.

Watch that experience come to life as chef Toriyama of Dashi Master Marusaya prepares two dishes — shabu shabu with A4 wagyu beef slices and katsu toji — to pair with Kirin Ichiban beer.

Producers: Azimin Saini and Beatrice Bowers
Video and edits: Rabbit Foot Productions
Special thanks to Dashi Master Marusaya

Beatrice Bowers
Features Editor
Beatrice Bowers writes about beauty, drinks, and other nice things. When not bound to her keyboard, she moonlights as a Niffler for novels and can be found en route to bankruptcy at your nearest bookstore. Don't tell her boss.
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