It’s been a while since I went to any new places so I thought I’d take a trip to Kichijoji, go to some record shops and cross a couple of beer places off the list. Today’s post is on a place that is unsurprisingly pretty similar to a place I’ve already posted about on here. Ben’s Slop Shop is quite like The Slop Shop which you can read about here. Amazing writing and insight eh? As I like to keep myself to myself, I didn’t pry as to who Ben might be. Their Instagram mentions L’Oncle Ben, which I found quite intriguing and made me think it might previously have been a different but similar place before it was brought into the Slop Shop empire. A quick google sends me spinning further into confusion when it turns out that there is a French singer called Ben L’Oncle Soul. An awareness of how much time I waste on the internet has convinced me to just leave this mystery hanging and forget about it. But if you know what’s going on, please let me know as I can’t honestly say I have completely moved on from my intrigue. It opened in April 2021 so this post is not actually that late when you consider how long it recently has taken me to visit new places. I hope that this might change a bit in 2022. Also in 2022, there will be some interesting changes coming to this blog. Hopefully… Hopefully interesting and hopefully coming. Anyway, I’m spending a long time writing this intro so let’s move on to the actual blog post part. Here’s what you need to know:
– Booze shop with drinking on site. I visited the other Slop Shop quite soon after it opened so can’t say if it’s still the same, but this place felt a bit more suited to drinking on site. There was a row of bench seats along the wall with some mini tables (which incidentally looked a bit like they had come from an Indian restaurant, but maybe that was just me). Some Kaku-uchis (booze shops where you can also drink on site) feel a bit like they want you in and out fairly quickly, but I can imagine settling in here for a few hours and going through the various options they had. Talking of which…
– They have six taps of beer and one Kombucha if that’s more your thing. (I think there is still no Tokyo Kombucha Drinker blog yet). When I was there they were all Japanese craft, and the tap list is pictured on their Instagram each day. Along with this there are, (if I remember correctly), four fridges of excellently selected bottles and cans from lots of different countries. I realise that ‘excellently selected’ is quite subjective, but I’m usually quite fussy when it comes to places having interesting selections so take from that what you want. The beers are divided by style and cover a fairly wide range. There is some lovely Belgian stuff in big bottles (naturally at lovely Belgian big bottle prices) alongside the trendier stuff that’s coming out of the US at the moment. And some Japanese craft too if you want to keep it more local. They were also selling Mikkeller Baghaven beers by the glass from big bottles which is a great opportunity to try some stuff that is perhaps usually prohibitively expensive for everyday boozing. On tap the beers were served in two sizes, R and S and ranged from ¥800-¥1300 for the R and ¥550-¥950 for the S. The R was a big wide tulip glass and I’d say probably something approaching 350-400ml. I didn’t see the small size, but you can probably have a decent enough guess. I’d say probably around 250ml (nice work there, guessing when you didn’t even see the glass…). For stuff from the fridge, there is a corkage fee of ¥200 for stuff under 500ml and ¥400 for stuff over 500ml. Not sure which category exactly 500ml falls into, but I’d guess the former.
– They have some snacks. I’ve forgotten what they were. I’m sorry. They have wifi. There was no cover charge and you pay as you go. They are open in the daytime too! Nice!
All in all, a really good place I think. I would have liked to have stayed longer but I was on a bit of a mission. It’s not too far from Kichijoji station along what I think is the main shopping side-street running West from the main station area. Probably easier to check the map below than trying to visualise what I’m attempting to describe. To me the prices looked pretty fair. I’d like to visit with a drinking partner so I could take full advantage of their fridges. Saying that, the tap stuff was all pretty tempting so I might just stuck to that. I thought Kichijoji wasn’t exactly a big beer destination but it seems there are a few places now and this place probably jumps to the top of my list of places to pop in to if I’m in the area.
Japanese breweries on tap when I visited:
吉祥寺本町 4-6-3 スターライトスターブライトビル1F-A号室, Musashino-shi, Tokyo