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Along with its naked giants and high-flying fight scenes, anime and manga mega hit Attack on Titan is defined by its oppressively bleak atmosphere. Its world is one in which not only do rampaging monsters want to eat you, the ruling aristocracy is ready to kick you out of the walled city if you’re too big a drain on its resources.

Compelling as its story may be, after spending enough time in that setting, even fans of the series could find themselves needing a stiff drink. If so, they might want to reach for a glass of the soon-to-be-released Attack on Titan plum wine.

He may be a household name now, but it wasn’t too long ago that manga artist Hajime Isayama was largely unknown. The Attack on Titan creator is just 28, which means he’s only a decade or so removed from being just another kid growing up in rural Oita Prefecture.

But while the sudden skyrocketing success of Attack on Titan has brought Isayama fame, wealth, and an enviable amount of creative freedom, that doesn’t mean he’s forgotten his roots back in his hometown of Oyama, now merged with a number of other former municipalities into Hita City. The town is equally proud of their manga star, and previously Oyama has issued stamps and held exhibitions and other events related to Attack on Titan.

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Oyama’s tiny population doesn’t really lend itself to the creation of large economic entities, but one local industry is plum wine, called umeshu in Japanese. Not only are plums grown in Oyama, but the beverage itself is produced, bottled, and sold in the town by the company Hibiki no Sato.

Isayama and Hibiko no Sato have teamed up once before to make Attack on Titan plum wine. Due to the first batch’s popularity, they’ve decided to go ahead with a second.

The set includes two 500-mililiter (16.9-ounce) bottles, each with a different type of plum wine and label specially drawn by Isayama for the project.

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The first variety is the Bande Side S, with Attack on Titan’s Levi appearing on the label (the “S” stands for “short,” because while Levi may be tough and cool, he’s definitely not tall). Made with Oyama-grown oshuku plums and aged for over three years, the Bande Side S plum wine has an alcohol content of 20 percent. Hibiki no Sato describes its flavor as strong yet crisp, and recommends drinking it on the rocks or cut with soda water.

The other bottle contains the Bande Side T, referring to the “tall” Erwin and Hange on its label. Also aged for over three years, but made from nanko plums and only 14 percent alcohol, the Bande Side T’s flavor has stronger fruit notes. Best served on the rocks, business travelers may find the taste familiar, as the same blend is also poured by airline ANA in its business class.

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Lining the two labels up next to each other produces a composite illustration of the three Survey Corps standouts relaxing together. Likewise, placing their boxes side by side also creates one large image, in keeping with the name Bande, which is German for “band” or “group.”

If you’re too thirsty to make the trip all the way down to Oita, the 3,780-yen (US$31.50) Attack on Titan plum wine set can also be purchased through convenience store Lawson. Preorders start February 24, with shipment on April 4, meaning you’ll have your bottles in plenty of time for that second season of the anime we keep hearing about.

Source: Hibiki no Sato
Top image: Hibiki no Sato
Insert images: Hibiki no Sato (1, 2)