Shibuya Bars & Nightlife
１-22-23 Ebisu, Shibuya
Listening bars are a thing in Japan. You go, you drink, you listen to a DJ spin vinyl, and you stay really quiet while all this happens. One of the best of the bunch is Bar Martha, which has not only amazing drinks but an amazing sound system—one the bar spent $300,000 on. Order a mojito here (make sure it’s with Havana Club rum) and sit back while the music plays. While you’re listening, enjoy the addictive nuts served in Mason jars and do some serious Tokyo people-watching.
1 Chome-13-10 Jinnan, Shibuya
Traditionally, great bars in Tokyo have been very liquor focused. Craftheads is every bit as amazing as the old guard bars, but its focus is beer. Here you’ll find a list of beers that may be the most comprehensive in the world, including specialty beers from the US that you can find only in Japan, not to mention rare brews like the always-sought-after Three Floyds Dark Lord Russian Imperial Stout. The friendly staff is happy to guide you through tastings of different Japanese and American microbrews, and non-beer drinkers can enjoy a concise, yet expertly curated, bourbon list.
No trip to Tokyo is complete without indulging in a little kitsch and karaoke. Rainbow is as much a spot for veteran would-be superstars as it is for shy-to-sing novices. Many of the rooms have full band kits—drums, guitars, speakers—while others are cozy and private enough for guests coming to sing solo. It’s a stone’s throw from Shibuya station, so it’s easy to get to. The courage issues that alcohol can’t help, sugar might—hence the free ice cream at reception.
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