The chance to hit the town with the ladies does not come around often enough and when it does, there are high expectations for a few hours of girl-talk and cocktail drinking. With a flier promising a night of all-you-can-drink for a meagre 3000yen in Jingumae, it did not take much convincing. Honestly, not much was expected from a Tokyo bar with a drink all you can flier, besides some cheap drinking in a lively Tokyo nightspot before moving on to another bar in the area. What we didn’t plan for, was to spend most of the girl’s night at BAR Street and it sits securely at the top of the list of great drinking bars in Tokyo. Men need not shy away as the crowd was well-mixed and a variety of English and Japanese is spoken which makes for easy communication for both locals and visitors to Japan.
Where is BAR Street?
Opened in November 2015 and set in the easy-to-remember-location of 2-22-2-2 Shibuya, we made our way up the lift to the second floor where we were greeted by a deceptively quiet corridor of bars. We asked (in English) about the Ladies Fast Pass and a suited and booted barman explained BAR Street’s Fast Pass system.
How does the Fast Pass work?
You got to get there early. Flashback to the deceptively quiet atmosphere when we arrived at the eager hour of 7pm or so. Get there between 6 and 8pm to secure your all-you-can-drink pass. It’ll set you back a happy 3000Yen and you’ll receive the Fast Pass ticket. Now BAR Street patrons are able to hop between each of the 7 bars in Bar Street for a maximum of 10 hours.
The Seven Bars in BAR Street
Each of the bars have their own vibe, from Medicinal mixology to Sake sampling, and Tequila tipples to goblets of Gin, we had barely enough room for the Rum bar, but somehow we managed. The Whiskey bar was left unconquered for the next visit.
Local Japanese brews are served as well as top overseas spirits and I left that night a Chiba Sake convert and more beautiful after a Beauty cocktail. Medicinal mixology with a bar that looks more like a pharmacy from yonder-year has cocktails that promise to anti-age and detoxify you.
The attentive bar-staff manage to create a space with as much or as little intimacy as you would like and the mysterious looking stairwell leading upstairs is not a bathroom , but a VIP area which may well be worth exploring should your curiosity get the better of you. The bathroom incidentally is mid-corridor and easy to locate.
Speak to your BAR Street Bartender?
It is not hard to grasp BAR Street’s appeal. The alcohol served is smooth and the bar staff are smooth-talking but not invasively so. Each of the bars have dedicated bar staff who will skillfully guide you through the menu available to those with a Fast Pass, serve tasty bar snacks and answer a never ending stream of consciousness if you so fancy.
At first we found ourselves seated in the sake bar ordering sparkling sake and getting recommendations from one of the good-looking barman, which is where we stayed for quite some time enjoying complimentary grilled snacks and talking about life in Japan. I implore you to get to know your bartender. Try your Japanese or default to English – both were fine! If you do find yourself a regular at BAR Street during your stay in Tokyo, the bar staff are gold. Nuggets of information if you are traveling Japan or staying local, they will even hold your seat if you leave their bar to grab a drink from the bar next door. You might even find one of them is from the Japanese city next on your bucket-list.
Brimming with a cool laid back crowd of young professionals, BAR street has successfully married the concept of quality drinking for a reasonable price in one of Tokyo’s most fashionable neighborhoods. Play around with your Fast Pass, have fun and make a date to visit it again and again. The allure of an all-you-can-drink Fast Pass, got our attention and the exceptional mixology has kept it.
2-22-2 Shibuya, Tokyo