Craft Beer in Tokyo: Goodbeer faucets

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Goodbeer faucets is a short walk away from my office in Shibuya, just a few blocks. Since it’s so close, tonight I make it my second craft beer destination in Tokyo.

Getting there.

Getting there.

Located on the second floor above Family Mart, big yellow sign.

Located on the second floor above Family Mart, big yellow sign.

Though it feels like it could be an American craft beer place it is unmistakably Japanese. Customers are greeted at the door Japanese-style (“いらっしゃいませ”) by a host and shown to a table or a seat at the bar. There are both foreigners and Japanese people working here. Some amount of bilingual ability seems to be a requirement: the foreigners can speak some Japanese, and the Japanese employees can speak some English.

The bar and the faucets.

The bar and the faucets.

All of the beers here are on tap, no bottles that I know of. The menu features many Japanese craft brews, including a number of beers that are brewed specially for Goodbeer by NIDE BEER, and a number of American, European beers, too. But I’m not here to drink those. I’m here for the Japanese beer.

Tonight I start with the NIDE BEER Endless Brown Ale:

NIDE BEER Endless Brown Ale

NIDE BEER Endless Brown Ale

Next I order the NIDE BEER Smoke Pump Stout, a real ale:

NIDE BEER Smoke Pump Stout

NIDE BEER Smoke Pump Stout

Then I move on to the NIDE BEER Cream Ale and the BLT Burger:

BLT Burger and NIDE BEER Cream Ale

BLT Burger and NIDE BEER Cream Ale

Finally, I end the night with NIDE BEER MONSTER C IPA:

NIDE BEER MONSTER C IPA

NIDE BEER MONSTER C IPA

The clientele here is composed of more foreigners than the average place in Tokyo. I think a given foreigner is more likely to be into craft beer than a given Japanese person (depending on where they are from, but the markets in the USA and Europe are more established than the Japanese market) so I’m not surprised that the foreigner density is higher. That said, there are still plenty of Japanese folks who come in tonight. Awareness of beer styles and tastes beyond the standard “Japanese dry beer” is growing.

My experience at Craftbeer faucets is positive. I talk a little with the manager, Dede, and we get along well. I’ll be back.

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