Open

How About a Drink with your Bento box ?
Small Sake Bottles with Cups that Pioneered Station Sake Sales

Small Sake Bottles with Cups that Pioneered Station Sake Sales

  • Period: 1910
  • Material: Glass bottle
  • Dimensions:
    [right]Height: 19cm, Diameter of base: 6.5cm, Volume: 396mL
    [Left]Height: 18cm, Diameter of base: 6.5cm, Volume: 288mL
  • Small Sake Bottles with Cups that Pioneered Station Sake Sales

In 1910, Gekkeikan came up with the idea of selling small sake bottles with attached drinking cups, a revolutionary idea that combined the tokkuri flask with the ochoko cup, and registered it as a utility model. When the cap was removed it could be inverted and used as the cup. This idea was adopted by the Tetsudoin railway authority (government-owned railways), for selling sake at stations. People were travelling more and more on the ever-expanding railway network, so sake in small bottles with drinking cups would be bought along with station boxed lunches (ekiben).

In 1912, a total of 126,000 liters was sold at 71 stations, which rapidly expanded to 453,600 liters at 88 stations by the following year, 1913, thanks to how popular it was with customers. Initially, sales were concentrated in the Kansai area, but gradually expanded along the Hokuriku Line, the San’in Line, the Sanyo Line, the Tokaido Line, and the Kagoshima Main Line, followed by stations in the Kanto and Tohoku areas, until it was available at stations nationwide, spreading the name of Gekkeikan around the country.

go to pagetop