Tokyo’s varied selection of old, basic bars and eateries are well documented on Tokyo Times. But, when the weather gets warmer, those wonderfully no-nonsense characteristics are carried out on to the street. Meaning the same cheap and cheerful food. The same clutter and grime. And perhaps most importantly of all, the same fantastically relaxed atmosphere.
Her native Okinawa that she left over 40 years ago must have changed enormously, but the bar this strong-willed Mama-san runs in Tokyo most certainly hasn’t. Or at least not since the 1970s.
A space that in many ways is more like an extended living room than a bar, allowing customers, with the accompaniment of a couple of beers, to feel completely at home.
No dreams of Michelin stars or celebrity customers; just good basic food, in suitably basic surroundings.
The more things change in Tokyo, the more they really do seem to stay the same.
Work may well be over, but drinks clearly don’t dilute the disagreements.
Tokyo can be a horribly frantic city. One that all too often barely gives its residents time to breathe. But amidst the crowds and seemingly incessant noise, there are pockets of calm to be found. Places where one can sit down. Have an afternoon sake. And let the hustle and bustle slowly fade away.