Stepping inside Kamiya Bar is like stepping back in time to a soviet-era establishment. The furnishings here are simple and plain, the tables are designed in blocks and are paired with comfy black seating, and the exterior mirrors the tall, unadorned buildings typical of Russia. This is the best spot in the city to try a unique liquor made on the premises called denki bran, an extremely potent concoction consisting mainly of a herby brandy. This place attracts a mixed crowd of both travellers and locals looking to try the authentic Japanese beverage.
Address and Telephone: 1-1-1 Asakusa, Taito, Tokyo 111-0032, Japan, +81 3 3841 5400
Located on 28th floor of hotel Conrad Tokyo, Twenty Eight offers excellent service and brilliant views over Tokyo Bay. A warm and welcoming spot, a huge rustic fireplace and comfortable seats set the scene for a relaxing drink in a homely setting here. Whisky and wine options abound, and if you’re seeking something non-alcoholic, there is a very impressive collection of teas here which includes aromatic flavors such as chai and cinnamon. Their signature cocktail, the Tei-en, is a perfect mixture of vodka, cucumber, shiso, kiwi and cardamom seeds, and is definitely worth trying.
Address and Telephone: 1 Chome-9-1 Higashishinbashi, Minato, Tokyo 105-7377, Japan, +81 3 6388 8000
Hidden away in a small office building, Ishino Hana Bar is a little bit hard to find, but is truly a hidden gem in Tokyo. A spot which takes its cocktails seriously, expert bartenders using first-class ingredients and the latest mixing equipment rustle up some delightful concoctions. Don’t miss the green tea option made with fresh tea leaves, vodka, lime and soda water. The interior is narrow and dimly lit, creating a romantic setting for an intimate evening of drinks and conversation.
Address and Telephone: B1, 3-6-2 Shibuya, Shibuya-ku, +81 3 5485 8405
Ben Fiddich is another cozy and exclusive joint which can accommodate about 15 people at a time. Candles light up the room here and create a warm, dreamlike setting in which to enjoy a variety of wines, beers and cocktails. The staff here are charmingly dressed in smart suits, and the jars of spices and fruit which line the walls here are alluring and aromatic. Try to secure a prime seat at the bar where you can watch the owner, Hiroyasu, work his cocktail magic.
Address and Telephone: 1-13-7 Nishishinjuku | 9F Yamatoya Bldg., Shinjuku160-0023, Tokyo, +81 3 6279 4223
One of Tokyo’s glittering sky-high hotel bars, Sky Lounge Stellar Garden is situated high enough to offer panoramic views, but low enough to keep customers within the buzz of the city below. The Tokyo Tower cocktail is a must try as well as the yuzu martini, and there is also a wide selection of ice-cold beer and high-quality Japanese whiskey available. And if you’re feeling peckish there is a full snack menu available offering an array of delightful Asian delicacies.
Address and Telephone: 4-8-1 Shibakoen, Minato, Tokyo 105-8563, Japan, +81 3 5400 1154
This bar is operated by well-dressed bartenders in suspenders and bow ties, and is a place which, instead of offering a drinks list, encourages customers to order absolutely any kind of cocktail they feel like. The bar is sophisticated and features sleek and chic tables and walls, and there is tasteful neon lighting found dotted about the establishment. If you can’t quite think of what drink you would like, some of the house specials include the Manhattan cocktail and the Japanese grape and brandy blend.
Address and Telephone: 1-5-13 Ginza, Chuo, Tokyo 104-0061, Japan, +81 3 3535 8005