July 20th is Hamburger Day! Celebrate with Echigo Koshihikari Beer

18 Jul 2019

First McDonald’s in Japan

July 20th is Hamburger Day in Japan. This commemorates the opening of McDonald's first Japanese store in Ginza Mitsukoshi in 1971.

On Tuesday, July 20th 1971, the first McDonald’s shop in Japan opened suddenly on the first floor of Mitsukoshi Department Store in Ginza. Why “suddenly?” Because, to avoid any interference with the department store’s regular operations, the construction of the shop was complete in only 39 hours; beginning after the store was closed in evening on Sunday and used the following Monday, the monthly holiday of the store.

Den Fujita, the entrepreneur who held the franchise rights for McDonald’s in Japan, insisted on Ginza as the location for the first McDonald’s shop. In the United States, the most logical places for McDonald’s restaurants would be the suburbs, but Fujita reasoned, “When something happens in Ginza, the whole country finds out about it. If we succeed in the business here, the name “McDonald’s” spreads throughout Japan.”

The first shop was a small area of only 50 square meters, offering a take-out service only. However, on weekends and holidays, the Ginza pedestrian precinct was soon filled with young shoppers strolling with a hamburger in one hand.

Today, we can find McDonald’s restaurants everywhere. It is one of the is the most popular, if not the most popular, fast food chain in the world, but in Japan in 1971, those were just new and weird; those who on the pedestrian precinct surprised many passersby.


Hamburger and Beer Is the Perfect Match

The beer we recommend is Echigo Koshihikari Rice Lager. Lagers are one of the best beers for burgers since they're clean, crisp, smooth and bubbly and are inherently drinkable – not too hoppy, malty or bitter.

Echigo Koshihikari is a rice style lager with 5% alcohol. It’s a pale golden color that comes out of the bottle, with a strong head that quickly fades. It has a slightly acidic tang to the regular lager flavor, but it is not too overpowering. The beer has a crisp and refreshing flavor, and exceptionally soothing and smooth quality. The sweet aroma of rice, and eloquent fragrance of hops, make it the perfect complement to any dish. Also, the hops in a beer flavor can help to reset and cleanse the palate between bites, and help cut through of the fat and grease of the burger.

Enjoy Echigo Koshihikari Beer with hamburger on this Hamburger Day!