The fantastically named Garapago Racing Kaisei Handmade Beer is a brewery west out of Tokyo on the Odakyu line, almost in Odawara. Although my picture doesn’t show it, it’s in a really nice location with mountains on two sides in the not too far distance. Given that it’s in an area where it seems like the town is meeting the countryside it’s no surprise that it’s pretty big. It’s the kind of place that would cost an absolute fortune to build in Tokyo and would probably have to be supported by a huge corporation. Here’s what you need to know:
– Very nice looking place in a nice setting. Ground floor has the brewery, kitchen, counter for eight and tables for the same. Upstairs is the big sell. It’s a bright airy room with tables for around 20 and glass doors looking out on to a patio/veranda with nice views of the surrounding mountains and it was very nice to sit out there. (Sadly, I’ve heard that the patio has now been covered but I guess you still get the views and a bit more comfortably at certain times of the year). The whole place feels modern but comfortable at the same time and is done to a high standard. Lovely!
– Eight taps of beer, six of which were their own creations. Beers are served in two sizes, glass (370ml) and pint (472ml). Prices range from ¥500-¥800 for the glass and ¥650-¥1000 for the pint. They also serve beer flights but the details are being worked on at the moment so I’m not sure about the pricing. We had a flight of all the taps which was quite fun, but I think they are happy to serve smaller flights too. Please enquire.
– Daytime opening, no smoking (I think), and wifi. There was a small cover charge but it’s a bit of mystery. If anyone knows more than I do, please let me know and I’ll update this, but it seemed to be the case that you could chose what you wanted from four options, with each option being ¥100 each. I think… I haven’t really checked enough details for this, have I? Sorry…
I always like to visit a new brewery much more than a new pub to be honest. The huge selling point of this place is the scenery and the patio. It was really nice to sit outside admiring the view. I wish I’d worn sun cream though as the brightness and the heat caused me to have to retreat back inside after a few minutes. You can still enjoy the view from inside though. The staff were very friendly and this was a really fun place to visit. I usually say, ‘pop in if you’re in the area’, but I’m not sure how many people are in the area around here. However, you can easily combine it with a visit to Yggdrasil, as we did, and some places in Chigasaki. Lovely!
Japanese breweries seen on tap:
(They don’t have their hours on Facebook so I can’t be sure, but these ones are from tabelog)
Monday, Wednesday-Friday, 15:00-22:00
みなみ 1-3-4 , Kaisei, Ashigarakami-gun, Kanagawa-ken