Japan Update #4 That One Time Golden Gai Got Us.

In Shinjuku, there is a famous area that is a collection of tiny bars called Golden Gai. It's a peek into how Tokyo used to be pre-WWII and is popular with locals and tourists alike. It's pretty easy to spot the 'gaijin-friendly' bars, they're generally loud and full of drunk Australians, English and Americans, with a few Europeans thrown in for good measure. Most bars in this area seat between 3 and 10 patrons and have a theme. We spotted a 'neko' bar, with it's very own resident cat inside, various music genre-themed bars and even a medical experiments themed bar. We had a friend who said we should try this anime-themed bar, where many anime industry people come after to work to blow off some steam.
As you can see, the buildings are quite, er, adventurous  This narrow staircase featured a handrail, though it was resting on the stairs, having fallen off long ago. Our barman was an excitable guy, and his menu included one item: "Special Cocktail". We ordered our special cocktails and once they were done, he got back to his Monster Hunter game.
I think there were 7 seats inside our bar, and you couldn't have crammed one extra person inside. Inside was brightly lit, with a collage of small whiteboards papering the wall behind the bar, each with an autograph and often a drawing by famous anime artist visitors. All along the bar were posed figurines, all unrecognisable to my untrained eyes, aside from the Evangelion one!
It was an extremely expensive experience, but pretty fun. Have you been to Golden Gai? I'd love to know of any recommendations, if you have!


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