Why just drink it, when you can also bathe in it? Wine lovers in Japan have been celebrating the release of this year’s Beaujolais Nouveau by taking a dip in the red stuff.

A hotel in Hakone – a hot spring resort southwest of Tokyo – has been marking “Beaujolais Nouveau Day” for years, by mixing wine into their traditional baths.

“It’s good for my skin and it feels relaxing. I feel very good,” said Natsumi Kaizu, from Tokyo, who took the plunge.

Yasunari Kuwajima was even hired in as a sommelier.

“On any other day, customers would be mad if I poured wine on them. But today they thank me for just that. What a special day,” he said.

Beaujolais Nouveau is a French wine made from grapes harvested just a few months ago and not matured in barrels.

It traditionally hits the shelves at midnight ahead of the third Thursday in November, accompanied by a massive marketing push to celebrate.


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