Tuesday, April 29, 2014
Yes, there's a chance that the 7-11 near you carries beer and wine. But, does it carry 7-11 brand wine? This is Oni Koroshi (Demon Killer), a sweet sake.
Recently, there's been kind of a war between the various konbini (Japanese convenience store) chains for dominance of the brewed coffee market. The can coffee market is over-saturated, and controlled by the beverage mega-corporations, so the konbini are looking to carve out a little money for themselves by installing fresh ground brewed coffee makers in their stores. Prices are anywhere from 100 to 190 yen ($1 to $2 USD) for small or regular cups of hot or ice coffee. Most of the beans are dark roast. I'd been told that 7-11 had the best hot brewed coffee for the price (100 yen for the small cup), and I'd been visiting each of the stores I found when I wandered the city to see which ones had the coffee machines (a few of them don't), and occasionally I'd buy a cup if I felt thirsty. The thing is, in one of the 7-11's I found a small discount table in one corner where they were trying to unload product past its sell-by date at about 20% off, including can coffee at 80 yen (normally, it's 120 for a small can). So, the shop's management is kind of competing against itself regarding coffee sales. Anyway, at the next 7-11, I looked for the same table and they had completely different stuff out for discount, including 6-week old Valentine's chocolate (I would have bought some if it was 100-200 yen per box, but it was more like 400-500 yen, which is still overpriced for what you get). The third shop had a 1.8 liter of 7-11 brand shochu for 700 yen, which is a really good price. Unfortunately, my hands were full with other purchases, so I went home, ate dinner, and then when I got back to the store, the one discounted shochu pack had been sold on me. So, I figured that I might as well get the cheapest sake (780 yen for 1.8 liters) and see how bad it is (very sweet, not much alcohol). A few days later, I was at Daiei department store, and I found plain Oni Koroshi sake at about 800 yen for 2.0 liters. That's definitely a better price, so if I ever do want cheap sake in bulk, I'll get it from Daiei.
Still, I think 7-11 brand wine is a funny idea.