Chatan Harbor Brewery – Interview with the Brewer

Chatan Harbor Brewery LogoChatan Harbor Brewery is a brewpub in Chatan, next to American Village, that is part of the Terrace Hotels group.  Shinobu Majikina is the head brewer focusing on their 6 regular beers, but she also brews seasonals that add a touch of Okinawa to their beers.  It can be difficult to find their beers outside the Terrace group of hotels and at the brewpub, but they can also be found at select Star Theatres and Tony Romas in Okinawa.  If you are looking for bottles, select bottle shops often have Chatan Harbor beer, but you can also go to Rogers Food Market in Okinawa City for growler fills.

Ultimately, their brewpub in Chatan is the best place to get their beers.  With the full lineup on tap, minus Busena Gold which is only available at Busena Terrace Beach Resort, you can really get a taste of the quality of Majikina-san’s beers.  The spacious restaurant, chill bar, and the beautiful terrace are ideal places to just sit back and relax with a pint in your hand.  Staying for the sunset, you’d be forgiven for never wanting to leave.Chatan Harbor Brewery - 眞境名しのぶ・Shinobu Majikina


Taihei: What challenges did you face in becoming a brewer and how do you continue to improve your recipes and techniques?

Majikina-san:  I’ve always wanted to be a brewer so I never felt any specific hardships to become one.  At Chatan Harbor Brewery, we work hard to make drinkable brews so our beers are easy to drink and pairs well with all kinds of foods.  I also design each beer to contrast from each other.  However, it is easy to go too far so I have to be careful and I didn’t expect it to be this difficult to create new recipes based on these ideas.  Of course,  the beers we make is a reflection of our tastes but we always try to to be objective by considering what is best for our company while thinking of our customer too.  This is why I drink many types of beer; from Japanese beers to imports.  I think about how it tastes, what ingredients go into it, and I study about new brewing techniques and styles.  I also go to festivals and study events to learn more.  Finally, I drink a lot of beer in order to learn and improve.

Taihei: You mentioned that Busena Gold was created as a poolside beer.  What factors do you consider for your resort guests when creating other new beers?

Majikina-san:  Busena Gold was originally created for the Busena Terrace Hotel.  The Busena Terrace Hotel’s theme colour is gold.  It is this gold theme along with the view from the beach that we created the concept of this beer.  Turmeric represents the gold theme, and lemongrass gives the impression of the cool sea breeze along the beach.  Additionally, we made it to be as light in body as possible to be a great thirst quenching beer.

Taihei:  What kinds of ingredients make Okinawan craft beer unique compared to other areas of Japan?

Majikina-san:  Since Okinawa is a subtropical region, the uniqueness has to be from the tropical fruits and the unique herbs and spices.  In the past, we made a beer with shell ginger, a spice that cannot be found in other areas of Japan.  The shell ginger created a very unique aroma.

Taihei:  Japanese visitors tend to enjoy your Lager, but many of your international guests prefer your IPA and Stout.  When creating seasonal beers, how do you choose between these two groups of differing tastes?

Majikina-san:  For our hotels, our guests are mainly Japanese, so they generally enjoy our regular line-up.  At Chatan Harbor Brewery’s restaurant and bar, we get more local craft beer lovers and Americans, so we can challenge ourselves with new seasonal beers.

Taihei:  Chatan Harbor Brewery offers boat tours of Chatan harbor with craft beer.  What are your go-to beers for this boat cruise?

Majikina-san:  Our boat tours all require reservations.  For a day cruise, the citrus notes of the Golden Wheat would go well.  For the sunset cruise, I would go with the Lager to match the golden colour and shine of the sunset.


Brewery Chatan Harbor Brewery
Map 〒904-0115 Okinawa-ken, Nakagami-gun, Chatan-cho, Mihama 53-1

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