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$$ - reasonable
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3-4-14 Mejiro, Toshima-ku
(Place added by: RobBeer)
Ratings & Reviews
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| Reviews: 16
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.25 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | $$
I just saw that I hadn't reviewed this place yet, and since I stopped in again this week I thought I'd document my thoughts on this wonderful store.
Close to the Meijiro stop off the Yamanote line. You have to walk down some stairs that appear to lead to a narrow alley to find the entrance. Alternatively you can take an elevator from street level but it's not well marked (at least to my American eyes). The store is laid out for easy shopping, with all beer in coolers to the right of the entrance. Categorized by country, with the largest selection from Belgium, followed by USA and then maybe Japan (or maybe Germany).
There are some Belgian beers that I've only previously seen in one other place (Dranken Geers near Gent), also quite a few that you often see in the States. Notably I saw Westvleteren bricks earlier this year (not on my recent visit though), similar pricing to what was available in the USA.
If I lived in Tokyo I suspect I'd stop here often for the USA IPAs, they're pricy but it's nice that they're available. The Japanese beers (ji-biru means craft beer) would be fun to work through too.
Misc notes: Lots of glassware from all over the globe, good selection of sake and shochu and other drinks as well.
11-13-2013 20:32:12 |
More by TurdFurgison
United Kingdom (England)
quality: 5 | service: 3 | selection: 5 | $$$
Tanakaya is totally, thoroughly awesome. The only comparable selection I've seen in Japan to date was at Mugishu-tei in Sapporo, and that was a bar, not a bottle shop. Especially exciting to me is their spectacular selection of American craft beer: AleSmith, Stone, Southampton, Dogfish Head, Avery, Great Divide, Full Sail, Bear Republic, North Coast, and several others I can't remember are all represented. Among them, many (most?) are what might be called extreme beer-barleywines, IPAs and double IPAs, imperial stouts, wood-aged ales, and the like. These aren't necessarily my favorite styles, but it's always thrilling to find them in Japan because they're so rare here.
They also have a cooler full of Japanese craft beer that seemed small at first glance, but upon closer inspection, it was easily the most comprehensive selection of ji-beer I've ever seen: Baird, Minoh, Iwatekura, Kiuchi, Echigo, Hakusekikan, Swan Lake, Coedo, Yo-Ho, and the list goes on. Even Kyushu is represented with Hideji Beer! I picked up a Harvest Moon Yuzu Ale and a Sankt Gallen El Diablo Barleywine, mostly for the bizarre, opaque violet spire it comes in. I also got an adorable hand-painted ceramic Hitachino Nest cup (their glassware selection is great, too).
And of course, Tanakaya's European selection is fantastic as well. Their assortment of Belgians would be enough to keep any monk-loving yeast-freak happily drunk for months, and their German shelves are stocked with the crème de la crème of Pilseners, Bocks, Doppelbocks, Hefeweizens, Weizenbocks, and Altbiers. The UK section is somewhat small, but I can't call it disappointing thanks to their lineup of barrel-aged J.W. Lee's Harvest Ales, which had me seriously geeking out (these are exceptionally rare in Japan).
Recently there has been some debate in the Beer Advocate Asia group forum as to whether Tanakaya or Tobu is the best beer store in Tokyo. I went to Tobu, too, and having been to both stores, I can't believe this debate ever took place. Tanakaya is absolutely, positively, hands-down, no-doubt-about-it the better beer store. I can't say for sure, but it is probably the best in Japan. Definitely worth a visit, whether you live in Japan or you're just visiting.
04-17-2008 13:04:56 |
More by soulgrowl
quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5
Directions: Take the JR Yamanote line to Mejiro Station. When you exit the station you will be facing Mejiro Dori (Ave.). Turn left and walk less than one block. Tanakaya is well marked in English on your left.
This store is pretty good sized. Most of the store is devoted to liquors and sakes, but in the back is a large selection of imported beers, including many from Belgium (including several lambics and saisons, for example). On the left side of the store is the comparatively smaller selection of Japanese beer. The standards are here (Asahi, Kirin, Yebisu, etc.), but there is also a small but good selection of Ji-Biru (Japanese microbrews). On my visit they apologized to me that they were out of both Yona Yona and Ginga Kogen, but told me that they would have it tomorrow.
This is a pretty easy to find store, and has a decent selection of beer. The store also sells some food items.
06-15-2003 22:57:43 |
More by UncleJimbo
United Kingdom (England)
vibe: 5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | $$
After a year and a half in Korea I almost ejaculated when I entered this beautiful looking bottle shop.
Just turn left out of Mejiro station and it's a few shops down.
Went there a few times during my week in Tokyo and the service was mostly impartial but one girl was very nice. Only once did they wrap up bottles for me.
The American and Belgian ranges seemed the most complete. Belgians included Westvleteren 8 (at over ¥2,000!), every St Bernardus, Achel, Chimay, a few Cantillons and many more but certainly not the whole gang. The two St Bernardus 12's I bought were off, even though they were dated 2017.
American beers included a couple of Racer 5's, some Anchor brews, a couple of Sierra Nevadas and a whole heap of American IPA's and porters I'm unfamiliar with.
What little selection of Japanese beer they had I didn't pay any attention to.
The English and German selection was disappointing (although outstanding for East Asia!); a couple of dopplebocks, a marzen, a few weizenbiers. Only two Schneider & Sons and a drizzling of more German randoms. English beers included a few from Fuller's, JW Lees, Spitfire and a couple more. Half the section was filled with nuevo Scottish beers by the likes of Brewdog and Harviestioun, which, as lovely as they are, have more to do with American craft than English brewing. It'd have been lovely to have seen more regular English pale ales instead of barley wines and old ales but this was clearly geared towards the American craft-minded drinker.
PRICES: For non-special beers about ¥585-685. JW Less cost ¥1,000 each, about £7.
OTHER: There were loads of lovely French brandies, whiskys and whiskeys, sakes, wines and so on. Great selection of beer glasses, too.
01-20-2013 08:31:16 |
More by Hoppsbabo
British Columbia (Canada)
vibe: 3 | quality: 5 | service: 3 | selection: 5 | $$$
This place is crazy. I could easily have spent $1000 here. They have an amazing collection of US beers I can’t even find in Canada...
The beer ’fridge’ is a work of art, all wooden. Japanese beer selection was a little weak, but they had some good ones like Isseki Nicho and a few Baird seasonals.
Lots of rare Brewdog, Mikkeller, and Nogne O. Hair of the Dog, Dogfish, Stone. Russian River. Expensive, but about what it would cost me in Canada. If you’re in Tokyo and love alcohol of any kind it’s worth a visit or two!
12-25-2011 07:18:46 |
More by Jonathan604
quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5 | $$
Mejiro is located between Takadanobaba and Ikebukuro on the JR Yamanote line. It took me 25 minutes to get there from Shinagawa station.
This store was well worth the trip, I assure you! They have quite the selection of imports - I was seriously impressed. A very nice selection of Belgians, Germans, English, and even American micros are housed in the back case. Larger, mostly corked bottles, are in an open case on the floor in the back and contain around 15-20 varities alone.
Sam Adams Triple Bock for around 750yen ($6.33), good selection of Rogues for around $3/bottle, a few Anchor varities, four from Unibroue, even Rochefort 8 for $5 and 10 for less than $7. AS Rauchbier Marzen + Weizen and some Samuel Smith to name a couple of others.
1/2 point deduction for a fairly weak selection of Japanese crafts in comparison, also - service was just average. I purchased 8 bottles and they were all thrown into one flimsy plastic bag. Not much care, although the glasses I purchased were individually wrapped. Scrapped my receipt, so I can't do an individual tally, but for 8 brews (3 Japanese), two glasses (Fin du Monde + Orval), and a Grimbergen opener - my total came to about 4,900yen ($41.36).
If you're in Tokyo, do yourself a favor and check this one out. Kanpai!
P.S. Closed on Wednesdays, also only open till 9pm.
02-10-2006 03:35:16 |
More by nouseforotacon
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Tanakaya in Tokyo-to Tokyo-shi, Japan
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