Written by James
A relatively new craft beer bar just two minutes walk from Kagurazaka station.
I found Beer Olyn on Instagram and decided to check it out. The first thing you notice is the cool homemade window sign (see photo). It’s not on the first floor and the sign helps people find the place.
On entering I got a big surprise as Kubota, the owner of this one man operation addressed me as “sensei”. It turns out I was his high school English teacher about ten years ago. It’s always nice to see what former students are doing now and I think Beer Olyn definitely makes full use of Kubota’s outgoing personality and skill set.
Beer Olyn is a modern bar and liquor store. There are seats for about 8 people and there are 10 taps and several fridges. Beer can be drunk at the bar or taken home. The price is the same either way. Like most new places it’s a non-smoking establishment.
Kubota actually has a Taiwanese mother and speaks the language well enough to use it for business. Of the 10 taps, one tap seems to be Taiwanese. It was Taihu when I went. The other 9 taps are split between American and Japanese craft beers.
Prices were on the high side. Half pints started at ¥950 and pints ranged from ¥1,450 to ¥1,750.
Definitely not cheap but it is very close to the station, has unusual beers and there is no charge.
As well as the ten taps, there is a wide selection of bottles and cans. Kubota actually has a beer importers license so he can get some unusual beers. There were some Asian craft beers (Taiwan and Hong Kong) that you don’t often see in Tokyo. I thought the bottles and cans actually offered better value than the taps.
Obviously, as this place is run by a former student, I am a bit biased. But I have to say I really liked Beer Olyn and I hope that it does well.
Japanese breweries on tap when I visited:
West Coast Brewing
Saturday & Sunday, 14:00-22:00
矢来町 64-4 DEAR神楽坂, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo