This is another low detail interlude where I mention some places that I’ve visited in far flung places that are a long way out of the catchment area of this blog. There are minimal details and some links to websites or Facebooks or Instagrams and that’s all. But bear in mind that if I go somewhere bad I’m not going to add it to this, so their inclusion is some sign of a place being decent enough. Today, it’s Kagoshima!
Narrow entrance leads to a small bar counter with a few extra seats. Five or six Japanese and imported taps and bottles and cans too. Seemed like a place where everyone knew each other but the staff were nice and welcoming. Unfortunately was a bit smoky, like many places in Kyushu seem to be. But we still had a fun time here.
Dolphin Industry / Craft Beer Stock Yard
The former is a third floor bar and burger place with five or six taps split between domestic and imported craft. The latter is their bottle shop on the floor below where you can also drink which we didn’t manage to make it to as it closed at 20:00. Therefore, can’t say anything about that, but the bar was nice.
46 Kagoshima Craft (Hifumiyo Brewing)
This place was fun! Small U-shaped counter for about eight and tables for around six more. So, clearly quite small but apparently it’s a quite popular place. This central taproom is only recently opened but the brewery has been going a bit longer, (but is still relatively new). The big selling point from a tourist’s point of view is that it is open during the day! But beware, if you go in from opening at 15:00, if you get hungry they only have nuts. When evening comes they have a cook for more substantial stuff and some of their offerings are vegan friendly! Didn’t see the menu though. Ordering is done online through a QR code. 12 taps, most of which were their own beers and the others were from other local breweries. Lots of local ingredients used in their beers. Beers served in two sizes, but somehow I’ve failed to note down what they were… We were going for halves and I’d say they were probably around 250-300ml. As for the bigger size, I’m sorry, I don’t know… Their own beers were priced at ¥800 for the half and ¥1200 for the larger size. But tax is added on afterwards. The guest were ¥1400 for the large and ¥1000 for the half. Along with the beer they have other local alcoholic drinks available including a very interesting shochu that I was intending to go back and try, but I ran out of energy as we boozed our way round the city. The brewery also seems to be socially conscious when it comes to their business which is exemplified by them using outsider artists to design their beer labels. Not sure outsider artists is quite the right description, as that might convey something wilder than the reality, but they certainly seem like a brewery who deserve our support. Will go back next time I’m in town.
Moonrise is a fairly recent addition to the Kagoshima scene and looks very fancy. The bar is a pretty spacious with seats for about 20 and a counter for six. The brewery can been seen through the glass on one side of the space. They have six taps of their own beer in two sizes, 260ml and 350ml ranging from ¥660-¥770 for the small and ¥880-¥990 for the larger size. They also do flights of three beers for ¥1100, (or ¥1200 if you include guests, but when we were there all of the beers were their own). I know I’ve said this already, but it really was quite a swish place. They had a really fancy stereo system and collection of records which gives it extra marks as far as I’m concerned as I guess someone involved is a big music lover. They weren’t actually using it when we were there though, the music coming through the regular speakers on the wall instead of the massive ones next to the stereo. They had food too and as there is some kind of fancy restaurant upstairs which seems to be run by the same people, I’d guess that is also quite swish. The cheese plate we had was pretty nice. Beers are perhaps a work in progress, but surprisingly for me, I enjoyed the wheat beer with green tea (which I don’t really like usually), and the Belgian IPA was good. Will go back next time we’re in town.
Second floor corner bar with a nice view out onto the shopping arcade. Open pretty late and we really enjoyed our final stop here. Once again, five or six taps of Japanese and imported stuff but maybe leaning more towards Belgian type beers. Fridge with lots of interesting bottles and cans which also lean towards the Belgian side of things. Enjoyed this place a lot and the atmosphere was nice and friendly. As we left the barman gave me a lemon.
Massive fancy spa hotel that has its own brewery. You can’t visit the brewery itself, but there are a load of different places to drink their beer spread around the hotel. The prices vary depending on the fanciness of the dining or drinking establishment. Their beers are available at quite a lot of the bars also listed on this post but if you want to go to the source (although not actually to the actual brewery…) this is the place to go. There is a free Shiroyama Hotel shuttle bus that you can take from a few locations in the city so it’s relatively easy to get there. Also there are some nice views from around the hotel.