Miyazaki was something of a surprise when we went there as I didn’t really consider it much of a beer destination. However, there are actually quite a few breweries in the prefecture and quite a few even in the centre of Miyazaki city. I’ve visited all of these places so you’ll get some details if I can remember then correctly. There are a few more breweries but I don’t know if they have taprooms so I’ll just mention their names here. I had a Nichinan Bakushu beer and it was really nice. There’s also Awakihara, Kirishima and Unkai. So actually it’s something of a beery prefecture. Here we go with Miyazaki!
Aozora is a microbrewery/brewpub kind of in the old Japanese style. Basically, I mean that it looks like a more traditional kind of bar rather than a bare concrete, light coloured wood and exposed metalwork kind of place you might expect now. They have six taps of their own beer available in a variety of sizes and some bottles too. They also do beer flights. We had some classic Japanese style pub food here, (pickles, cheese kind of thing), and they had a kitchen so I guess they do bigger dishes too. They had a NE IPA on, which for most people would be a good thing but was an immediate swerve for me. I mention it to tell you that it’s not all Weizen and Brown Ales here. Nice local feel to it.
Beer Market Base
In contrast to Aozora, Beer Market Base, (the taproom of the BMB Brewery), feels much younger and more modern. I guess you can tell from their skull biting a hop logo that they are a bit more edgy. If Aozora is your classic brewery who also give some modern styles a go sometimes, BMB has the ‘wild’ anything goes, particularly if it’s edgy, kind of young brewing punks feel. Their taproom is a long counter and it’s open very late. They have about 20 taps with a decent number of their beers included (maybe a third) with the rest being mainly imports with some Japanese craft guests too. Whilst some of their beers were a bit too ‘wild’ for me, it was still a fun experience and the staff were nice.
Miyazaki Phoenix Brewing
Another place with very friendly staff. I guess people will shout at me saying that staff are nice everywhere apart from Tokyo. This is another brewery taproom and the tiniest of the three mentioned with maybe four seats inside and the same outside. But it’s on a quiet road so I think at busy times there could be the possibility of standing outside. Think they had eight taps, half beer and half cider. Only one of the beers was made there, but most of the ciders were, so I think that is more their focus. I liked the ciders a lot actually. They also do hot dogs and have mini art exhibitions inside. I should stress that it is very ‘mini’
Nobeoka is the home of the Hideji brewery that you can find all over Japan. The brewery itself is up in the mountains and is reachable by public transport I think once a day in either direction. Therefore, if you want to drink Hideji as close to the source as possible the best place to go is their Izakaya in Nobeoka city. It is very much an Izakaya, so expect all Japanese food, shoes off at the entrance, sliding Shoji doors and everything else that comes with the experience. As traditional Izakayas aren’t great for vegetarians, we did have to double up on a few dishes as there wasn’t much choice for us. But the food we could eat was great. And they had six taps of Hideji at very good prices including some I have never seen before. There didn’t seem to be much going on in Nobeoka to be honest, but I have to admit that we only really went
from the station to the hotel to the bar and the weather was quite bad. Pleased we went though!