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Wine Manga to the Rescue

Presented By Jason Jones
February 1, 2024

Japan is well known as one of the world’s gustatory capitals. From Michelin-starred restaurants and hidden-gem izakaya, to fully-stocked bars inside your local convenience store along with specialty wine bars, Japan’s culinary scene runs the gamut. In this talk, we will view wine from the perspective of the sommelier in Japanese wine manga—a media form through which Japan’s culinary acumen and affluence are recorded and repackaged for popular consumption. It is through the sommelier in wine manga that we are introduced to some of the world’s most popular wines, many of which remain readily available. The sommelier also serves as our tour guide across what can seem like an intimidating terrain of terroir, lexical complexity and life lessons, granting the reader increased confidence in their ability to navigate the world of wine. As part of our exploration, we will visit epoch-making works such as Araki Joh’s Sommelier and La Sommelière as well as Tadashi Agi and Shū Okimoto’s immensely popular Les Gouts de Dieu, or Drops of God, which has seen multiple adaptations into televised series, the most recent appearing in 2023 as an internationally-streamed drama. Prepare both your eyes and your taste buds for a delectable treat!


Topics to be covered

  • What is the wine education landscape in Japan?
  • The uptake of wine in Japan
  • What is “gourmet manga”?
  • What are the origins of wine manga?
  • What does the sommelier in wine manga teach us about wine?
  • Where to start when learning about wine through manga and other sources of popular representation


Dr Jason Jones
Jason Jones is Coordinator of Japanese Studies at Monash University. His work centres on cultural adaptation as represented in Japanese film, television, animation, manga, and other texts. His most recent research topics have seen him examining the world from the perspective of the Japanese sommelier in wine manga—yes, there is such a thing—and (re)visiting the 1960s, 70s and 80s to investigate the image-creating capacity of US media products in Japan. He is also an active subtitler and scripter for a number of international streaming services.

This is the first of three events in the talk series, Red, White And Rosé: A Celebration Of Wine And Winemaking In Japan.



February 1 (Thursday), 2024
6:00pm-7:00pm AEDT
40min talk + 20min Q&A
Onsite & online via Facebook Live (FB account not required)

Free; bookings not required


Find out about the Wine Talk series.

Learn more


For onsite attendance, find us at:
The Japan Foundation, Sydney
Level 4, Central Park
28 Broadway, Chippendale NSW 2008


(02) 8239 0055

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