Righteous indignation or an overreaction?

There’s been a lot of online buzz in Japan recently about a half-price beer deal at the conveyor belt sushi chain Sushiro. Normally, such news would make a lot of people happy, but the way in which this campaign was rolled out seems to have rubbed a lot of people the wrong way.

It started about two weeks ago when some Sushiro locations hung posters and put up signs advertising the deal, but forgot to say when the sale began. This resulted in some customers going in for the cheap beer as advertised, only to be told it wasn’t available yet.

▼ Say it ain’t so, Sushiro

After that, once the sale actually did begin, complaints started spreading over social media that some locations were selling out of beer right after opening. To make matters worse, other social media posts have been floating around accusing Sushiro of serving smaller-than-normal glasses of beer.

Are all these shenanigans really afoot? We really love Sushiro, so we hope not. On the other hand, our love for Sushiro is superseded by our love of beer in general, so if they are messing with beer then they absolutely need to be held accountable.

To find out either way, we sent our ace reporter Ahiruneko to a Sushiro in downtown Tokyo when it opened at 11 a.m. and armed him with a measuring cup. He didn’t want to take the cup at first, but after lecturing him for an hour about journalistic integrity, he finally broke down.

Upon being seated, the digital menu clearly displayed the half-price beer deal for 264 yen (US$1.94) a glass. Places like Sushiro and Saizeriya are famous for their really cheap food, but they’re often not as inexpensive when it comes to beer, so this offer really was a relief. At least, it should be…

Shortly after, his frosty beer arrived and looked perfectly normal. It should be noted that beer in Japan is typically served with a tall head of foam, so the way it looks in the pictures is very much par for the course.

Of course, this was only one beer and Ahiruneko had nothing to compare it too. So, he quickly chugged it down and ordered another one.

Sure enough, this too was average size. It was pretty much how he always remembered beer at Sushiro, but memory is fallible. Luckily, our website has a vast library of images of beer bought at various chain restaurants, and Ahiruneko was able to pull up a picture of a beer bought at a Sushiro in Tottori Prefecture in August of 2021 and cross-reference it.

▼ Tokyo Sushiro Beer July, 2022 (left), Tottori Sushiro Beer August, 2021 (right)

Furthermore, he found an image of a beer bought at the family restaurant chain Johnathan’s in December of 2021, which again had a nearly identical size.

▼ Sushiro Beer July, 2022 (left), Johnathon’s Beer December, 2021 (right)

It certainly looks the same, so much so that Ahiruneko regretted bringing the stupid measuring cup even more. After all, he couldn’t very well measure a picture, so what was the point?

Still, what was the deal with people complaining about the size then? Pictures on social media showed people with a considerably shorter cup of beer than the ones displayed in the poster or on Ahiruneko’s table.

Once again consulting our vast library of beer pictures, our reporter found one with a glass that matched those on social media, used at Steak Gusto.

Suntory Premium Malt’s beer glasses come in two types, a tall and narrow one and a short and wide one. However, they both hold 380 milliliters (13 ounces). Ahiruneko confirmed this by looking at sales listings for each cup on the flea market app Mercari.

▼ Sushiro Beer July, 2022 (left), Steak Gusto Beer May, 2022 (right)

Ahiruneko spent about an hour at Sushiro, drinking its beer in the spirit of fair and accurate reporting, and it did not sell out. He would have stayed longer to observe the supply, but it was getting very busy and he didn’t want to hog a seat.

So, it would seem that our visit to Sushiro for its half-price beer sale was not hindered by small glasses or short supply


Sushiro is still on the hook for screwing up the posters at the beginning of this campaign and suckering in unsuspecting diners with false promises of cheap beer. And even though we personally didn’t experience sold-out beer, it’s something we wouldn’t wish on anyone. Perhaps worst of all was that one time they were too busy to make a reservation when Ahiruneko really had a hankering for some eel.

That last one really had nothing to with the topic at hand, but it really bugged Ahiruneko at the time and he’s still holding a grudge.

We’re willing to give Sushiro a pass this time, but if they pull any more flim-flams we’re going straight to the head office. Not all of us really, just P.K. Sanjun in a wrestling singlet, because he’s our most intimidating staff member.

You’ve been warned, Sushiro! You better be on your best behavior and not mess with the people’s beer from now until the end of this half-price event on 28 July either.

Photos ©SoraNews24
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