Japan Booze News 6/29

June 29, 2011

Hello, and thanks for reading another of my increasingly infrequent missives!
If I’m not posting much, it generally means there are lots of fun drink-related activities going on in Tokyo, and this month’s no exception.

Last week was father’s day, and numerous beer-related novelty products were flying off the shelves of shops such as Tokyu Hands. My favourite is the Takara Tomy Beer Hour, a device used to make pouring beer cans into glasses easier. You could buy this or, alternatively, you could simply tilt the glass a bit.

Summer is nearly here, the rain is gradually dying down and the rooftop beer gardens are starting to open.
Over the past few years, I’ve often ended up drinking in the sunshine atop the Kudan Kaikan hotel, near Kudanshita subway station (that beer garden is famous for its fetching bunnygirl waitresses), but since the roof of that hotel sadly collapsed during the big earthquake, I doubt there will be much partying going on there this summer. Fortunately, a suitable replacement has been provided in Odaiba by Hooters, who have opened a beer garden at the Grand Pacific Hotel, near Daiba station, for the summer. Until August 31st, it’ll be open daily from 4pm (or 11am on weekends) ’til 10:30.
You can find out more here.

The fun will continue in a couple of weeks, an hour south of Tokyo, in Shonan (self-styled “Miami Beach of Japan), where the wooden beach bars will be erected (and they’re not the only things that’ll be erected, once the bikini-clad hordes of Shibuya girls arrive to sun themselves. Fnarr fnarr!) The beaches of Enoshima, Zushi, Yuigahama (in Kamakura), and Hayama are all good spots for a refreshing beer overlooking the waves. The bars close at 9, at which point you can join the drunken deliquents merrily setting off fireworks on the beach. Even if you’re too skint for the beach bars, you can always grab a six-pack for the 7/11 and park your arse on the sand.

In Zushi, the Otodama Sea Studio beach bar has already opened for business, and will be playing host to various well-known Japanese live acts over the summer, including The Pillows, Garnet Crow, Orange Pekoe, and Ryo the Skywalker, as well as DJs Takkyu Ishino, Tomyuki Tanaka (Fantastic Plastic Machine), Shinichi Osawa, Ken Ishii, and Dex Pistols.

Finally, to make your Japan-based boozing easier, a book has been published called, Drinking Japan: A Guide to Japan’s Best Drinks and Drinking Establishments, by Chris Bunting. It is, by all accounts, an enjoyable and informative read, and I’ll be sure to post a review once I get hold of a copy. At the same time, it may well take a gargantuan dump on my hopes of ever writing a similar book. Ho-hum! I’m off to drown my sorrows at Hooters.

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