Aojiru: Classic Japanese Green Vegetable Juice
A TV commercial that I often saw when I was small left a great impact on me and even now when I find the product “Aojiru (青汁)”, an actor’s line in the commercial saying “Mazui, Mou Ippai (まずい、もう一杯: Taste terrible, but another serving) frequently crosses my mind.
But thanks to the impactful line, the recognition of Aojiru drastically increased, and now it has become a successful product in Japan. Searching online, I found that Kyusai’s Aojiru commercial, so if you are curious, please watch this video (Youtube) and get a smile!
The impression that I got when I was a kid was so strong until recently I had the old notion that Aojiru tastes bad and thus avoided buying the product altogether.
But it can be seen sold everywhere and the other day I eventually bought Itoen’s bottled Aojiru from a vending machine for sampling, and also got 100 Percent Omugi Wakaba Aojiru powder by chance from one of my coworkers yesterday.
What is Aojiru?
For the unfamiliar, Aojiru is a non-sweetened, simple green vegetable juice, squeezed from leafy greens such as kale, Omugi Wakaba (young barley leaves), Ashitaba (a herb of the parsley family), or mulberry leaves.
In most products, these 4 veggies are mainly used. Some Aojiru are blends of 2 or 3 of them and matcha green tea powder seems to be sometimes added to make the blends easier to drink, while others are made solely with one ingredient (e.g. 100 percent kale, 100 percent Omugi Wakaba).
In terms of the easiness to drink, the ones mainly using Omugi Wakaba seem to be most easily drinkable, while the ones consisting of 100 percent kale have a high degree of difficulty.
As for the Itoen Aojiru PET bottle, the main ingredients are Omugi Wakaba and kale, but the addition of matcha green tea powder gives the beverage a familiar taste to Japanese people, making the juice less earthy and quite easy to drink.
To be honest, although it isn’t bad, I wouldn’t buy Aojiru products again. Today in Japan, many people customarily drink Aojiru for health, but personally, I prefer taking Tokuho green teas like this and this when considering my health.
However for your reference, on Amazon, you can read other people’s reviews on Japanese Aojiru.