The cocktails in Japan in general are highly over rated. The service is impeccable the drinks themselves can be really quite bad. There are a few absolute gems though.

01

Ben Fiddich

Far and away the most creative cocktails in Japan. Owner/bartender Hiroyasu Kayama is often traveling the world exploring new flavors and spirits which is rare not just for Japan, but for anyone anywhere. This travel I think really allows his to create the best cocktails in Japan, and some of the finest cocktails in the world. Mr. Kayama has a calm joyous style when making drinks that makes everyone around him happy. I think that is perhaps the real secret ingredient that makes drinking at Ben Fiddich so enjoyable.

https://profile.ameba.jp/ameba/kayama0927/

Location: 160-0023 Tokyo, Shinjuku City, Nishishinjuku, 1 Chome−13−7 大和家ビル 9F

 

02

Bar Centifolia

You probably know this bar from seeing on Instagram or Tic-Tock. I know as since the owner/bartender Yuzo Komai has won many cocktail competitions. Also rumor has it is also the favorite bar of the head of Suntory. It is also the hardest reservations for any cocktail bar in Tokyo. Every bartender has their own style and Mr. Komai certainly has his very distinct style. He is one of the few bartenders in Tokyo who thinks about beautiful a presentation along with the cocktail. Presentation matters and he probably delivers the best presentation of any bartender in Japan. What is often overlooked at this bar is the exceptional collection of vintage and rare Yamazaki and Ardbeg. It should go without saying but apparently it does need to be said, drinking here is not cheap. If you want a cheap drink, there are plenty of other bars to go to.

https://www.instagram.com/bar_centifolia/

Location: 106-0045 Tokyo, Minato City, Azabujuban, 1 Chome−6−5

03

SG Club - Sip

SG Club - Sip

The cocktails served at the high volume 1st floor bar "Guzzle" were not particularly good, but the cocktails downstairs at "Sip" were excellent. It is a short list of cocktails but all very enjoyable.

https://www.facebook.com/thesgclub/

Location: 1-7-8 Jinnan, Shibuya 150-0041

 

04

Wodka Tonic

Wodka Tonic

Surprisingly good cocktails. Although the menu is rather short. Usually about 5 cocktails. I have tried them all of course and enjoyed them all. The drinks are somewhat seasonal where a a couple of the cocktails get rotated out. They also have a remarkable spirits collection although you have to be a regular for the really god stuff to make an appearance. This great combination of cocktails and sprits own my heart and allows me to have a good time here whatever direction I feel like going and allows me to invite anyone to drink with me here and I know they will also have a good time.

http://wodkatonic.tokyo/

Location: 2 Chome-25-11 Nishiazabu, Minato City, Tokyo 106-0031

05

Shot Bar Zoetrope

Shot Bar Zoetrope

The world renowned Bar Zoetrope is regarded as one of the finest Japanese whisky bars in the world. They have a huge breath of Japanese whisky but perhaps more importantly the owner has a breadth of knowledge on Japanese Whisky unrivaled by anyone working at any bar in the world. Other bars might have might have more expensive bottles, but that is not what this bar is about. Because of it is internationally well known there are quite of few foreigners that come to the bar and he speaks english very well so can accommodate visitors better than other bars. I love coming here and trying 12 different pours of things I haven’t seen before. Warning: The bar cannot accommodate groups larger than 4. Do not be a jerk and to try to do a table of 4 and a table of 2. You will be asked to leave.

http://homepage2.nifty.com/zoetrope/

Location: 7 Chome-10-14 Nishishinjuku, 3rd floor, Shinjuku, Tokyo 160-0023

 

Updated: 2024.04.11