Asama: Yotsuya 3-chome
Yotsuya 3-chome / Izakaya
Shinjuku-ku, Yotsuya 3-7.
Open 5-11pm (LO). Closed Sundays.

The sign outside this old-school sake pub entices with the promise of jizake - local sake - and makes good on that offer. On Friday nights, the crowd consists mainly of beer-drinking salarymen, but Asama is a great place for those who love sake.

A good starting point for novices is the Y500 sake list, which features a selection of brews from producers such as Kudoki Jozu and Kariho. More seasoned drinkers will find several varieties of limited-edition sake and premium brands like Juyondai and Azuma-ichi. If you need help navigating the three-page sake menu, proprietor Tomohisa Hatakeyama will make recommendations for you based on your preferences.

The food menu features tasty izakaya standards such as grilled tebasaki chicken wings and crispy vegetable tempura, all prepared in the impossibly tiny kitchen at the back.

by Melinda Joe
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