The Drops of God (Kami no Shizuku) started serialization in 2004, written by Tadashi Aginote and with art by Shu Okimoto, and finished in 2014, having been collected into 44 Japanese volumes. It started being released in the United States in late 2011 by Vertical, under the title The Drops Of God. However, releases in the US came to a grinding halt, due to low sales numbers. To add insult to injury, the author requested that the release skip about 120 chapters and jump to the so-called New World arc, a decision that was received with contempt by readers. However, the license was picked up by a collaboration of Kodansha Comics and Comixology Originals in 2019, with plans to release the entire series in digital format.
Shizuku Kanzaki is an average office worker at a beer company. One day, he receives the news of the death of his estranged father, Yutaka Kanzaki, a world-renowned wine critic. Shizuku was trained from an early age to be a terrific wine taster, but he rebelled against his father and now disregards wine. In his father's will, it is stated that he will leave the house, his wine collection and a sum of two billion yen to Shizuku, so long as he can identify which wines are the "Twelve Apostles" and "The Drops of God". Shizuku would have refused the inheritance, if not for the fact that Issei Tomine, a renowned young wine critic whom Yutaka adopted just before dying, wants the wine collection for himself. Shizuku, together with apprentice sommelier Miyabi Shinohara, sets out into the world of wine, armed with strong senses and an uncanny ability to describe each and every wine.
This manga is most notable for being extremely influential on the Eastern wine business, especially as it shot up little known wines to fame and overall increased wine sales exponentially.
A live-action adaptation was made in 2009.
- The Ace: Tomine.
- Animal Motifs: Shizuku as a dog.
- Crack Is Cheaper: In-Universe; Shizuku is constantly driving himself broke due to all the wine he has to buy.
- Defeat Means Friendship: So far (in the American release) Chosuke and Soichiro.
- Food Porn
- Almost literally in chapter 7.
- Four Eyes, Zero Soul: Tomine.
- Game Between Heirs: The whole plot is basically Shizuku getting into a wine tasting contest with his adoptive brother to inherit his father's vast and valuable wine collection.
- Gender-Blender Name: Shizuku.
- Gratuitous Italian: Chosuke.
- I Ate WHAT?!: Shizuku's training included licking such things as belts, pencils and flint.
- I Was Quite a Looker: Yutaka.
- Missing Mom: Shizuku's mother died when he was a little kid.
- Ms. Exposition: Mostly Miyabi.
- Mundane Made Awesome: Applying Shonen fighting tropes to wine preparation should be hilarious (and it is, a little,) but it works.
- Neutral Female: Kiryu, Yutaka's lawyer.
- Playing Sick: Kenya and Junya's father pretends that he has cancer so they'd quit fighting and work together to further their wine store.
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: Shizuku and Tomine.
- Serious Business: Truth in Television. Wine IS taken this seriously in real life.
- Shipper on Deck: Every other character seems to be rooting for Shizuku/Miyabi.
- Sibling Rivalry: Shizuku and Tomine are technically brothers, since the latter got adopted. A straighter example is twins Kenya and Junya.
- Smug Snake: Saionji and sometimes Tomine.
- Sommelier Speak: The manga is drowning in this, with the protagonist having LSD-like visions from the wine flavors.
- This Is My Side: Kenya and Junya divide their store with a bunch of wine boxes.
- Training from Hell: Shizuku thinks he had this.
- Uptown Girl: Anne Guillemard is from a wine-making noble family and played this (unintentionally) to Soichiro when they were students, which is why he is so bitter.
- Wine Is Classy: A big draw of the manga. A more specific example is the Sibling Rivalry between wine store owners Kenya and Junya. Junya wholeheartedly embraces this trope and only stocks top ranked high class wines, while Kenya specifically looks for good bargain wines. They both get a "The Reason You Suck" Speech from their father, who tells Junya that he only looks at reputation without actually trying the wines, and Kenya that he's stifling his palate by ignoring the top vineyards.