Yo-Ho Tokyo Black: A Japanese fridge holdout

Next up, Tokyo Black Porter from Yo-Ho Brewing Company:
tokyo black
I’ve been away. But with a Tokyo Black burning a hole in my fridge waiting to be reviewed and the recent death of one of the last Japanese Holdouts, Hiroo Onoda, how could I not write a review?
And sumo ass.

And there’s sumo ass.

Now when I say Japanese holdout, I’m not talking about the Japanese who signed up with other countries’ armed forces to fight Westerners. They’re just dicks. And I’m not talking about the ones who just decided not to go home. They probably just had really naggy wives. I’m talking about the real hard-asses who, without orders to the contrary, insisted the war was still on.
It’s hard to believe in this age of instant communication, but there used to be so many Japanese holdouts in Southeast Asia, for so long, that the Philippines were like a deadly Asian version of Colonial Williamsburg. Hell, Hiroo Onoda didn’t surrender until 1974. 19 freaking 74. 30 years after the war ended. 30 years without seeing a paycheck. 30 years of dismissing numerous air-dropped “The war is over!” leaflets as dastardly Allied trickeration. For 30 years, Hiroo persistently executed guerrilla “raids” on incredulous Philippine fisherman and farmers until his (former) commanding officer, now a bookstore owner, tracked him down in the Philippine mountains and ordered him to stand down. Only then did Hiroo surrender his sword, still-working rifle, 500 rounds of ammunition, grenades, and knife that his mom gave him to kill himself if he was captured.
Seriously, Mom.  I'm only going to the grocery store!

No, Mom. I don’t need the Seppuku knife. I’m only going to the grocery store!

Tokyo Black Porter pours dark, dark brown with a small khaki head that recedes to ring. It smells like chocolate, molasses, cream, and rich roasty coffee. It tastes like chocolate, cream, and char, and it’s a little drier than the nose indicated. The finish somewhat dry with a bit of lingering roast. It’s got pretty big flavor and fullness for a 5% ABV beer. I liked it.

The Haybag: Ah, so we’re at it again. I guess I’ll have to start paying attention now. I can’t even remember this beer.


12 thoughts on “Yo-Ho Tokyo Black: A Japanese fridge holdout

      • It’s starting to look like I need to rename the post to Kathleen Turner’s sumo ass. That would have yielded way more hits. I guess I’m just a little rusty.

      • True story…

        I once rode an elevator with Kathleen Turner (back when she was kinda hot, i.e. 1990). I worked in the Condo/Hotel she was staying at while she was in Philly doing Cat On A Hot Tin Roof. I was working as a butler in the Condo Sales office. Twas a weird job while in college that paid pretty well at the time. Disn’t do all that much. I mostly talked to this muy caliente Ivy Leaguer from Colorado that wouldn’t give me the time of day. Not much of a story is it?

        Anyway. Welcome back!

      • I would say that’s a worthy story. I don’t think I’ve ever shared an elevator with anyone remotely famous. There was this one time that it might have been a local reporter in the elevator with me, but it’s like 50/50 that it wasn’t.

  1. One of my fav porters to be honest, I always said I would love to enjoy this with Shepard’s pie and no place that had it served it, so I said well… EFFF YOU! and made Shepard’s pie my damn self, and enjoyed this beer with it, and didn’t feel like I wanted to die after like I do with other porters. Honestly, I bought this because Dat Sumo Booty first, and oh a Japanese porter second. Also the knife caption sold me on this blog. Bravo sir, I also say ridiculous stuff such as yourself. I’ve enjoyed reading several of your articles whilst I enjoy a Tokyo Black.

  2. Haven’t been around for ages. This was a great post to read for a drop in. You got to love a guy like Hiroo. I’m so tired of wine, it’s time to try beer again. And this one seems like a good entry.

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