Shimokitazawa NightlifeArea Guide
Only a few minutes from Shibuya, Shimokitazawa is up and coming in the quaint nightlife scene. Shimokita is like the grown up Shibuya, rather than clubs and cheap shot bars, Shimokita offers relaxing spaces to grab a quick drink or settle down for the night in a quiet atmosphere. To take advantage of the small spaces, most bars offer intimate lounges and a relaxing patio to soak up the warm summer nights. Try an inhouse original cocktail or enjoy a music gig in the intimate atmosphere of Shimokitazawa.
Perfect for warm nights, the Cage is one of Shimokita’s most popular night hangouts. Outdoor patio seating is designed from recycled playground equipment and diners can dine on Long va Quan’s Thai and Vietnamese food. Inspired by Southeast Asian food stalls, diners can pick up their meals to eat outdoors in the Cage or dine inside in unagreeable weather. Long va Quan also offers an original cocktail menu with sour cocktails made from fresh fruit, Southeast Asian beer and Japanese shochu and sake. Located under the Keio Inokashira train tracks, the Cage is the perfect spot to unwind in the warm summer breeze. Long va Quan is open from 5 PM to 12 AM on weekdays and 3 PM to 12 AM on weekends.
The rooftop bar of Arena Shimokitazawa is another locale to enjoy the warm, relaxing nights. Arena hosts DJ nights and the occasional live band in the vintage decked out space. Happy hour is from 4 PM - 7 PM where all drinks are under 700 yen. In addition to drinks, Arena is also popular for their curry dishes and lunchtime specials. The cozy space is the perfect spot for an early drink with friends or a first date. Arena is open from 4 PM to 12 AM every day.
A classic fixture in Shimokitazawa is the Suzunari Yokocho, an alley of small bars occupying a refurbished theater rehearsal space. A little off the beaten path, Suzunari is popular with the locals and can get busy later in the evening. There are about fifteen bars and and small restaurants in the building providing a variety of options if the popular places get too busy too quickly. Times and prices differ at each bar and restaurant.
Shisha, or hookah, is slowly rising in popularity in the trendy neighborhoods. Shimokitazawa offers a wide array of shisha bars, mostly cozy establishments with both indoor and outdoor seating. The shisha comes in a variety of flavors ranging from tropical fruits, flowers or candy inspired concoctions. Most bars also provide alcohol for the non smokers. Shisha bars are found all around the city center and generally identifiable by the soft lighting and smokers having a good time outside.
Fuchikuchi is another elevated outdoor space with live music and DJs almost every night of the week. There are two spaces, one indoor lounge and one outdoor patio. The indoor lounge is dimly lit with plenty of counter and sofa seating and the outdoor patio provides the perfect summer night’s view of the city. Gourmet snacks and cocktails accompany the music and outdoor breeze. House cocktails and beer are served but be sure to try Fuchikuchi’s wide variety of wine and sake. Fuchikuchi is open from 6 PM to 2 AM and is closed every Tuesday.