Friday, 21 July 2017

Brew La La

Today a post about a bar I have been waiting to visit for a while. First of all, in the interests of full disclosure, I should say that I am friends with the owner who first contacted me through this blog. He has been wanting to open a bar in Tokyo for a while now and I've been eagerly awaiting the chance to visit his creation. It's now open so I'm posting about it on here. Brew La La's concept is a New York style bar serving craft beer and a wide range of other kinds of drinks too, the idea being that it's not just a craft beer bar, but more of a bar that happens to have craft beer. I visited on their grand opening night, so perhaps I didn't get a true feel for the place, but will be back soon and if anything on here is wrong, I'll fix it afterwards. Here's what you need to know.

- Pretty spacious compared to many of the other places on here. Seating for about 40, with eight at the bar, 12 at a counter along the windows, and around 20 seats at high tables. There is also a large communal standing table and a sofa. The decor is unsurprisingly New York themed and they have what I imagine must be the only shuffleboard table in a bar in Japan. The second floor corner location gives views of the local Shinbashi nightlife if that's your thing. Also there are a few TVs dotted around and a projector and big screen for special events.
- 12 taps (or at least the capacity for 12 and apparently they are building towards having that number on all the time). At the moment there are a few less on, which makes sense as the place is pretty new and its popularity is still growing. Better to keep your beers fresh, rather than having a huge amount of taps where the beer is a bit old. All beers are served at the same price and in two sizes, 266ml and 400ml and they are priced at ¥700 and ¥1000 respectively. They are a verified venue on untappd, so you can check out what they have on tap at all times here, but judging by their opening taplists it seems to be mainly Japanese with some imports thrown in, covering a range of styles. There is also a growing selection of bottles and cans, mainly imports.
- New York themed bar snacks available with the focus being burgers and grilled cheese sandwiches. Have yet to try the grilled cheese but it looked very nice. They also now have a lunch menu too which includes, but is not limited to the grilled cheese sandwiches.
- No smoking and no cover charge. English spoken, so if your Japanese is not good, or non-existent you'll be fine here.

So, a fun new place in an area where there is a bit of competition, but I think the New York theme and atmosphere means that they are offering something a little different. I'm no New York expert, in fact I think it would be more accurate to describe myself as a complete New York novice, so I can't tell you how authentic it is, but the feel was nice and it's good to find a bar with plenty of seating which isn't squeezed into a tiny place. This also probably means that it will be somewhere where it's possible to walk up and have some drinks without a reservation as even when all the seats are taken there is still plenty of room to stand. I'm yet to try to shuffleboard, but that looks like fun. Although I worry I might end up getting some fingers broken somehow.

Japanese breweries recently seen on tap:
Ushi Tora
Izu No Kuni
Oh La Ho
Hitachino Nest

Opening Hours:
Monday-Friday, 11:00-14:00, 17:00-24:00
Saturday, 17:00-24:00
Closed Sunday

新橋 3-2-2 2F, Minato-ku, Tokyo



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