Chisato Mizusawa is the kind of hard-working employee that every office manager dreams off. She is cooperative, knowledgeable, takes initiative, and is well-respected by her younger co-workers. Curiously, however, she never tags along when everybody goes out for drinks. Is she just anti-social or trying to keep work and private life separate?
Nope. Turns out that Chisato is just the worst alcoholic imaginable.
Love is Like a Cocktail is a series of 3-minute shorts about Chisato’s life and drinking habits. Her husband is a skilled bartender, who always sees to it that his hard-working wife has something delicious to drink after another day at the office. Whether that’s a fruity cocktail to brighten up a sour mood or an Irish coffee to loosen up a night of watching horror movies.
It’s an adorable idea, made extra fun by just how lovable Chisato and her husband Sora are. They’re a wonderful couple who support each other and remain lovey-dovey even years into their relationship. The side-characters are also fun, even though they get very little focus due to the anime’s brief runtime. I was particularly fond of Chisato’s rival, a co-worker who is super ambitious and competes with her for projects, without ever coming of as envious or mean-spirited over any of it.
The short runtime does end up being the ONA’s greatest weakness, I have to admit. While it’s fun to breeze through a series like this, you never get to see quite enough of Chisato and Sora’s relationship, or the going-ons of her work, to make the story feel satisfying to sit through. The anime keeps having to rush out a mini-plot and then rush back home so we can get to the episode’s featured drink.
Getting to see Sora make the drink would also have been a nice touch. Instead you just get a list of vague ingredients and pointers, which makes it seems like the anime is more directed towards people that already know a lot about bartending? Or maybe it’s just not included because that would strain the minuscule runtime.
Honestly, the drinking gets to be quite repetitive. They try to make a running gag out of Chisato’s reaction to alcohol, but instead it just feels like you get slightly-altered repeats of the same 20-second scene in every episode. It’s not even that great of a joke, so having it repeat constantly in a show already pressed for time is pretty bad.
If you’re into comedy anime about adult characters or just really like alcohol, then you may as well watch Love is Like a Cocktail. Its runtime is basically negligible and it does have a lot of cute moments to it. Its flawed, but in anime this short you probably won’t have time to start feeling bitter over that.