Ebisu: Izakaya
Soregashi (Ebisu: Izakaya)
Open 5pm-midnight (LO) daily.
Sun: Open Sundays
no smoking: No smoking

Soregashi is a laid-back, very unpretentious local izakaya where you can explore a good range of craft sake along with an interesting food menu. There are a couple dozen sakes to choose from, including a good number of limited-edition seasonal bottles - not the biggest selection in town, but sustainable for a shop of this size. The staff are friendly and knowledgable about their stock, and are ready to make helpful suggestions.

The food menu may look quite ordinary at first glance, but the kitchen adds its own personal touch to typical izakaya fare. The eihire (ray fins), for example, are softer, thicker and meatier than expected, and come with a nice garlic-infused mayonnaise. The excellent potato salad is livened up with a good dose of vinegar and bits of raw onion, served with a soft-boiled egg on top. And the menchi katsu is one of the most unusual versions we've run across, with a meat filling that's dark and quite strongly flavored, encased in a thin, crunchy shell.

The only complaint is that it can sometimes get rather noisy - the bare walls seem to echo any ambient sound. Once it got quieter we enjoyed the blues soundtrack playing in the background. Later-than-average opening hours are another selling point, although it means you have to pay attention to train schedules if you don't live close by. Budget around Y4000-6500 for ample food and drink at dinnertime.

Shibuya-ku, Ebisu-Nishi 2-3-11.
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Venue listing from Bento.com5 Star Rating: highly recommended