Do people in Japan drink coffee?

Do people in Japan drink coffee?

You can check the answer of the people under the question at Quora “why do japanese drink coffee at night

0 thoughts on “Do people in Japan drink coffee?”

  1. The simple answer is yes, but nowhere near as much as the average European. Take a look at the following graph.

    Do people in Japan drink coffee?

    Another interesting thing is that in English, you would use the word ‘going for a coffee’ for all sorts of things. ‘Do you want to grab a coffee’ might be an invitation to catching up on gossip with friends, asking a love interest out, a euphemism for someone to indicate they have important things to discuss with you, a vague indication of some future commitment of company, etc.
    In Japanese, the same is done by saying ‘ocha demo shimasenka’ (won’t you go for tea?), which indicates the cultural significance of tea over coffee. Sure, you could substitute that word for coffee and the meaning would come through just fine, but it’s just not as conventional.
    Similarly, if you ask a friend to bring something to drink (en route from a convenience store, say, when you’re cooking them dinner) without being specific, they are most likely to get you some form of tea. I don’t mean to suggest in place of coffee, but in place of carbonated drinks or juice, which is what we’d probably do in the West. This is the sort of position that tea has in Japan- it’s the go to drink, for both hot and cold.
    The native tea industry is also heavily protected and there is a 20% tariff on coffee imports, which probably accounts for the expensive coffee prices in cafes.
    So what does this mean in real terms?
    Firstly, the quality of coffee is subpar. Most cafes and coffee drinkers seem to have a preference for some sort of sweetened coffee- so you get a lot of variety, but I personally find that the average Americano is overpriced and somewhat lacking. Of course, there are decent coffee shops too, and plenty that do hand-drip coffee. These are a lot more expensive though.
    Secondly, people don’t drink coffee so much with meals, and I found that dessert time did not always guarantee coffee. It was something to be asked for.
    Thirdly, cafe culture is lacking. I lived in a very middle-class neighbourhood in Tokyo, which accounted for the above average number of individual-owned cafes, but on the whole the cafe scene seems to be dominated by large chains like Tully’s or Excelsior or Starbucks (affectionately named ‘sutaba’ in Japanese).

  2. My sensei and some juniors in lab drink coffee every day. We have 2 coffee makers in lab room. Sometimes, someone makes dripped coffee. One junior drinks coffee all day.
    So, yes. They drink coffee.

  3. It is very easy to get a coffee in Japan.
    Finding good cheap ungrounded coffee beans can be harder.
    Most supermarkets sell mostly ground coffee.
    Recently the convenience stores are selling very good quality freshly made coffee for 1 dollar.
    It is putting a dent in canned coffee sales.
    Coffee shops around my neighborhood are all 10 times better than the Seattle-style chains. And I live in the country.
    By the way, I just worked out that Japanese (including non-drinkers) drink an average of 0.33 cups of coffee a day.

  4. Actually, I personally found Japanese are quite a coffee snobs. Just recently my martial art “sensei” came to visit. Out of the blue I made him a bottle of cold brew, he liked it, and to my surprise, he also regularly made cold brew for himself back home.
    Recently, you can find “third-wave” coffee businesses are growing healthily in Japan. I’m familiar with the brand such as Hario or Kinto, those two are the best coffee-making equipment manufacturers from Japan.

  5. Most of the answers have already been done.
    So I’ll just add some information.
    – I you go for lunch in a very traditional eatery like 和食 washoku / 定食 teishoku style, ramen, soba or places like that, you will probably not be served coffee but if you go in a 洋食 youshoku (post-war Japanese style western food), 喫茶店 kissaten (traditional Japanese coffee shop) or in a European style restaurant, you will get a set menu with a choice of soft drinks including black coffee, ice coffee, or caffe latte.
    – We have a coffee machine in my office (where I’m the only foreigner employee) and the machine is used all day long. I usually drink 2/3 coffees a day but my Japanese co-workers seem to drink much more than that.
    – People have mentioned all the American style coffee shops like Starbucks, Tully’s, Doutour which are really ubiquitous and full all day long, but there are more and more fancy / “hipster style” coffee shops with large choices of high quality coffee and coffee beans retail. I think it’s more frequented by young people than kissaten (mostly old people) and Starbucks (all the generations), but the number of places like that has kept increasing these last 3/4 years.
    – Convenient stores started to sell fresh coffee 1 or 2 years ago (hot, ice and latte) and there are big queues of people in front the machines all day long. It’s getting more and more consumed and it’s a big competitor for canned coffee. (They taste better and are also cheaper).
    There are also more and more stores selling coffee and accessories for coffee.
    I also noticed something: when people go out at night for drinks and someone wants to stay but stop drinking alcohol it’s really popular (among girls) to switch to caffe latte.
    About breakfast:
    I think it’s getting rare to eat a traditional Japanese breakfast (miso, grilled fish, etc) everyday except in families where the mum is cooking or when staying in a ryokan, on weekends.
    I lived 1 year with 2 (female) Japanese room-mates and they would eat either the leftovers of the dinner or eggs / bacon / sausages / square bread..
    (They are my age, between 35 and 40).
    And when looking at the pictures people post on Instagram / facebook or just asking people, it seems to be the same for a lot of people now.
    A lot of people skip the breakfast too.
    I’m not sure so many people own a coffee machine but people buy 1L bottles of coffee to drink at home.
    People drink either tea or coffee for breakfast but some also grab a coffee can on the way to their work or once they get there.


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