Unveiling the Legacy of Japanese Curry and Celebrating Curry Day with Echigo Koshihikari Beer

The Origins of Japanese Curry


In the 18th century, Indian curry found its way to England during the time when India was under British rule. A transformative moment occurred in the 19th century when the British, seeking a milder flavor, crafted their own curry powder by reducing the spice levels and incorporating flour for added body. This modified version of curry made its way to Japan during the Meiji era (1868–1912) when the country opened its ports to foreign trade.


Adoption by the Japanese Military


While curry had a slow start in Japan, its popularity soared in the early 20th century when it was embraced by the Japanese Navy and Army. The positive reception within the military circles paved the way for the dish to become a staple in school cafeterias. According to Japanese food writer Morieda Takashi, by the year 2000, the average person in Japan consumed curry more frequently than traditional favorites like sushi or tempura.


Curry Day and School Lunch Tradition


January 22 holds a special place in Japan's culinary calendar as Curry Day. In 1982, the School Dietitian Conference of Japan, marking the 35th anniversary of school meals (Kyushoku or 給食), decided to designate January 22 as the day to serve curry rice in schools. If January 22 falls on a school day, Japanese schools typically feature this beloved dish on their lunch menus, a choice driven by its immense popularity among children.


Recommended Pairing for Curry


When it comes to enhancing the curry experience, pairing it with the right beverage is crucial. Light lagers, renowned for their crisp and refreshing taste, serve as an ideal companion for spicy dishes. Their clean and crisp profiles can effectively cut through the spiciness, providing a refreshing contrast. For the perfect curry and beer pairing, Echigo Koshihikari Beer stands out. This flagship brand from Echigo Brewery is a rice-style lager with 5% alcohol, using the time-consuming German decoction method to highlight the naturally sweet flavor of Niigata-grown Koshihikari rice.


Echigo Koshihikari Beer – The Ultimate Choice


Echigo Koshihikari Beer, with its balanced and refreshing qualities, emerges as the top pick for a Curry Day celebration. Brewed with care by Echigo Brewery, this beer complements the flavors of curry rice impeccably. Elevate your Curry Day experience by pairing a plate of delicious curry rice with a bottle of Echigo Koshihikari Beer.




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