Kirin sells two of Japan’s most popular beers: Kirin Lager, one of the country’s oldest beer brands since 1888, and Ichiban Shibori, a beer that uses only the first press of the wort. At the end of a tour of and straight from Kirin’s Okayama factory, Ichiban Shibori was my first beer ever and a gift shop attached to the factory stocked all sorts of Kirin-inspired goods, including beer flavoured chocolate and mini-size cans of beer.
One particular product that caught my eye was Kirin’s collaboration with Glico Japan for this Mustard & Sausage Giant Pretz that’s meant to pair well as a beer snack with Kirin Lager. With Kirin’s earlier history of using malted grains and hops imported from Germany and employing German brewers to oversee production, the flavours of mustard and sausage make for the perfect pairing. This Pretz is available only at the Kirin factories around Japan, and cannot be purchased at international airports unlike region-limited Pretz.
Mustard & Sausage Pretz smell meaty and smoky like a frankfurt and this translates to a delicious flavour salty pork sausage in the first bite before the sharpness and slight sweetness of the mustard kicks in mid-bite to leave a mild heat in the finish that builds with each subsequent bite. The combination of salty sausage with the sweet and sharp kick of mustard is absolutely moreish, although the saltiness can be too much as a snack of itself, but probably perfect for pairing with a beer.
This box of Mustard and Sausage Giant Pretz by Glico Japan contained 16 packs with 2 biscuit sticks. It was produced in Japan and purchased in Okayama, Japan in 2015.