Brew Review – AK2 Japanese Lager by Ankrolab

I never had a beer this good anytime I went to Japan.

In all honesty, I never drank beer when I went to Japan, and part of me feels like I was missing out a bit. But the beer that made me realize this, AK2 Japanese Lager (Rice Lager, 5.3% ABV) by Ankrolab in Naples Florida, is light and flavorful and practically perfect.

If this is what they served in every single Tokyo bar I went to, I would need to have been wheeled back on the plane on a box cart.

It’s a light lager, almost white in complexion with an absolutely light Crystal malt notes along with unmistakable twinge of sweetness that comes from a healthy adjunct of rice. Along with that is a liberal usage of Contessa hops (one I’ve neer heard of) and a water profile direct from Osaka.

(Speaking of water and Osaka, do a search for The Curse of the Colonel. It’s an entertaining read.)

All of this is then allowed to lager for 100 days (!). The final beer isn’t overpowering or intense, it’s not bland or watery. There’s just the right touch of quality rice that lends enough of the flavor but does not bring the beer down.

The Contessa hops are silky smooth, malt is very clean, and this is otherwise a perfectly mild and sessionable beer that is still so flavorful that it should be a regular offering. This is a staff favorite at Ankrolab and the perfect beer to start with. It’s got everything that brings out the quality of a brewer & brewery without going overboard.

Had they had it, I would have gotten a six-pack or more. Kanpai!

Drink Florida Craft,


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