Japanese food is as diverse and considered as the country is ancient and historic. From takoyaki in Osaka to gyoza in Tokyo, the culinary journey doesn’t end with the food alone but extends to the drink it’s paired with. With two premium beers and an alcoholic lemon chūhai, Monsutā is a Japanese brand that truly understands the art of giant-sized taste. Whether you’re planning a quiet monster movie night or a dinner party at home, allow us to guide you through some of the best Japanese snacks and dishes, from classic staples to adventurous treats, all perfectly paired with Monsutā’s lineup of drinks for an authentic taste of Japan in a can at home.
Wasabi Peas + Monsutā Okinawa Dry
What did sushi A say to sushi B? “Wasa B!?” A staple of any local Japanese supermarket, wasabi peas or wasabimame are a snack you can’t overlook when it comes to classic beer pairings. Roasted or fried and coated with spicy wasabi powder, these peas offer a satisfying crunch and a sinus-searing kick that complements the smooth, crisp, and bold flavour of an ice-cold Monsutā Okinawa Dry.
Surume (Dried Squid) + Monsutā Chūhai
Perhaps one for the more adventurous eaters, surume is a favourite for springtime hanami (cherry blossom picnics) and summer festivals. Surume, a dried squid otsumami (Japanese side dish) is also given as a traditional wedding gift to symbolise a long and happy marriage. Typically flavoured with soy sauce or spices, the slightly chewy texture of surume is a beautiful marriage with the clean, crisp lemon flavour of Monsutā Chūhai, making the Monsutā Chūhai an excellent palate cleanser.
Chicken Karaage – Monsutā Okinawa Supreme
Whether from a conbini (Japanese convenience store) or a local izakaya, the combo of chicken karaage (Japanese fried chicken) and beer tops the list for many visitors to Japan. Usually marinated in a mix of soy sauce, garlic, ginger, and other seasonings before being deep fried, the crunchy exterior and juicy and tender umami interior of karaage is an unbeatable match with beer. Save on the flight costs and get your izakaya experience at home with homemade karaage and Monsutā Okinawa Supreme from BWS, Dan Murphy’s or Jimmy Brings.
Senbei – Monsutā Okinawa Dry, Monsutā Okinawa Supreme, Monsutā Chahai
A classic Japanese drinking snack, the versatility of senbei makes it the ideal option for any Monsutā beer or Monsutā Chūhai. Unlike the thin rice crackers found in most Australian supermarkets, authentic senbei comes in a much wider variety of shapes, sizes, flavours, and textures. Try pairing nori (seaweed-flavoured) senbei from your local Asian supermarket with Okinawa Dry or Okinawa Supreme from BWS or Dan Murphy’s. Alternatively, experiment with spicier flavours like kimchi or curry for a refreshing contrast with Monsutā Chūhai.
Kaki no Tane x Monsutā Okinawa Dry
Kaki no tane (or kaki pi) isn’t just a favourite amongst snack-bar-going salarymen; it was officially certified as “Space Japanese Food” by the Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency in 2017. This mix of senbei (rice crackers) and peanuts is typically flavoured with chilli pepper and soy sauce, but a variety of regional variations like lamb in Hokkaido and garlic in Tohoku have emerged over the years. The salty and spicy combination of kaki no tane leaves you craving your next sip of ice-cold beer and Monsutā Okinawa Dry has you covered. Clean, with a low bitterness and subtle malt character kept in check by its rice adjuncts, pair Monsutā Okinawa Dry with kaki no tane for a flavour combo greater than the sum of its delicious parts.
Edamame – Monsutā Chūhai
Like a pair of well-worn Vans, edamame is elegant in its simplicity and pairs nicely with just about anything, but Monsutā Chūhai takes the crown. As we head into warmer months, a light sprinkling of salt on the outside of the soybeans brings out their earthy and nutty flavours perfectly harmonising with the slightly sweet, lemony aroma of the Monsutā Chūhai. Perfect as a side dish or as an easy snack while doing a sumo wrestling deep-dive on YouTube. Sip, pop, repeat.
Kappa Ebisen – Monsutā Okinawa Supreme
Search your local Asian supermarket and it won’t be long until you stumble across a bag of Calbee’s Kappa Ebisen. These beloved prawn-flavoured chips, originating in the 60s have gained popularity worldwide, particularly as a light and crunchy, savoury companion to a full-flavoured beer to cut through the saltiness. The delicate, airy crunch and robust prawn flavour couple nicely with the lightly toasted caramel and malt notes of Monsutā Okinawa Supreme.
Sapporo Ichiban Instant Ramen – Monsutā Chūhai
As synonymous with Japan as Mt Fuji, instant ramen is a crowd favourite no matter where you are in the world. Of the various brands and flavours found on Asian supermarket shelves, our personal favourite is Sapporo Ichiban shio (salt) flavoured instant ramen for its firm noodle texture, richly-flavoured broth, and affinity for a Monsutā Chūhai. Keeping your tastebuds cool and invigorated, the clean crisp flavour of Monsutā Chūhai coupled with a piping hot bowl of ramen makes for the ideal fusion of comfort and refreshment.
Gyoza – Monsutā Okinawa Dry
Whether grabbed from your local Japanese restaurant or made at home with your friends, if there’s one thing for certain about this Japanese dumpling is that it gyoz-a well with beer. Pan-fried gyoza, with its crispy bottom and juicy, savoury filling, benefits from the touch of a smooth, crisp, and cold Monsutā Okinawa Dry cutting through any residual oiliness, leaving your palate refreshed and ready for the next plate. Vegan and dessert options are easy hand-made substitutes to your typical pork dumplings, making for a hands-on get-together at home.
Sashimi – Monsutā Chūhai
While nihonshu (Japanese sake) or straight shochu might be the more traditional pairings for sashimi, mixing things up with Monsutā Chūhai is a game changer. The mellow notes of vodka and shochu allow the delicate notes of fatty tuna, hotate (scallops) or buttery uni (sea urchin) to shine while the subtle sweetness and slightly savoury lemon finish adds a new dimension to the natural flavours of the raw seafood. With many local fish markets selling sashimi-grade salmon, and Monsutā Chūhai available at your local Dan Murphy’s, BWS or Jimmy Brings, you can have an authentic sashimi experience at home without the need for Duolingo.
Takoyaki x Monsutā Okinawa Supreme
Bring a taste of Osaka’s Dotonbori district home with you and experience the classic pairing of takoyaki and beer. With their crunchy outer shell, soft, molten centre, and rich umami flavour, these octopus-filled balls are a Japanese street food staple best paired with the lightly toasted caramel malt notes and crisp and dry finish of Monsutā Okinawa Supreme. With a giant octopus monster adorning the can, there’s no better accompaniment than an ice-cold glass of Monsutā Okinawa Supreme to rival takoyaki’s bold flavours.
These authentic Japanese snacks are as easy to come by at your local Asian supermarket as your favourite anime on Netflix. And with Monsutā’s lineup of drinks available at your local BWS and Dan Murphy’s or from Jimmy Brings for a night in, you don’t need to travel far to experience these classic Japanese food and drink pairings at home.