The Craft Beer Shinshu Kaikin Matsuri is a new for 2018 craft beer festival in Tokyo. This festival is being held in Takadanobaba, just a stone’s throw away from Waseda University. The theme of the inaugural Shinshu Kaikan Matsuri is “getting closer to craft beer”.
The event is being held during Golden Week making this a must visit to get your drink on. There is even a special event where 3 generations of breweries will be present and people who purchased tickets will be allowed to attend, sample, and vote for their favourite brewery.
- Breweries in the 1990s will be a hard fought battle between the Kansai giants, Minoh Beer, their recent sparring partner, Isekadoya, and the underdog that almost went under from the Great Tohoku Earthquake, Iwate Kura.
- For the 2000s, Iwate is represented by Baeren Beer who is facing the well-known and very popular Shiga Kogen.
- The youngest category is also a slug fest with the ever popular Yokohama Bay Brewing, of the Japan Brewers Cup, going up against Far Yeast Brewing Company, who have been brewing a lot of strong Belgian style brews recently, as well as Ushitora, a small brewpub that has all of the craft beer establishments fighting for their kegs.
The Shinshu Kaikan Matsuri is being held at the Belle Salle Takadanobaba conference hall. Heading south of Takadanobaba Station, it is the tallest building in the area making it stand out and easy to find at the edge of the main commercial core. They will be opening the grassy plaza on top of the conference hall so you can enjoy the wonderful spring weather with a beer in hand.
Be sure to also check out the specialty beer brewed specifically for the event. In conjunction with Takadanobaba Beer Kobo, a small brewpub chain in western Tokyo; Craft Beer Tokyo, a forerunner of craft beer information for Tokyo in Japanese; and the organizers of the event, they created the Baba IPA, an IPA with Szechuan peppers to emulate mapo tofu. Glasses are 500 yen per 200 mL. You can buy advanced tickets for this beer. Tickets are 400 yen per glass, or you can get a 1,000 yen drink and food ticket and a glass for 1,300 yen.