Sakura Taps has a range of European style dishes to dance with their range of 8 beers on tap. The variety of beers and food match perfectly with the atmosphere of the music. They have a rotating playlist of music created by local DJs. Be careful as the beer and food will have you out of your seat and doing the boogie and you may bump into someone and have to buy them a beer. Taihei bumped into Brian from Japan Beer Times and after stepping on his toes while dancing, had to buy him a beer.
The first dish on Sakura Taps’ playlist is their Potato Salad with bacon and garlic. If you are a fan of garlic, then this dish is for you. It is packed with a garlic taste that waltzes with the creamy texture of the potatoes. The bacon is easy to chew and not too crispy and they pile all of this onto the plate. This potato salad is excellent with a Wheat Ale that has lemon notes. These citrus notes will to do the Macarena dance with the garlic while the wheat creates an even creamier mouthfeel.
Next on their play list is the pork heart and celery tossed with their homemade all’Arrabbiata sauce. All’Arrabbiata is made mainly from garlic, tomatoes, and dried red chili peppers cooked in olive oil. Arrabbiata literally means “angry” in Italian to reference the spiciness of the chili peppers. The fattiness of the pork will coat your mouth to create a spicy tango between the tender pork heart and the celery. The obvious answer for pairing would be an IPA to turn up the heat, but the amount of effort that went into this dish shouldn’t be masked by the heat. To taste the tangoing flavors that are dancing on your tongue between the pork and celery, drink a Pilsner to lessen the heat and to cleanse the palate.
Track three is their Tortilla Española, which is translated to “Spanish omelette”. This flamenco of a dish has a spongy texture, like a cake, with a firm surface. The onion and potatoes were cooked till they were soft and the eggs add fluffiness to dance their way into your soul. On that day, we paired it with Onidensetsu Beer’s Sicilian Rouge Tomato, basically a tomato fruit beer. The Sicilian Rouge added a layer of complexity into the Spanish omelette like a flamenco dancer adding castanets. So put down your Bloody Mary and go for those fruit beers with low alcohol and low hop profiles to enjoy the balanced taste between the fruit profile and the subtle favors from the onion and potatoes in your omelette.
Saving the best for last is their vanilla ice cream because they will pair it with the best craft beer on their tap list and the owner will always keep in mind which beer to order for this musical piece. When Taihei visited that day, the owner paired it with a Swan Lake’s Strawberry Dark Saison. Temperature is everything with this dish as the ice cream was still a little too frozen at first. Once the ice cream hit the magical temperature, the vanilla was unlocked and the roasted malts and strawberry notes of the Dark Saison came together like a great orchestra.
For complete details on Sakura Taps, check out our page for everything you need to know, including photos. Next time you see Brain from Japan Beer Times, have a friendly chat with him and you will see why you will be buying his beer, but make sure he does the boogie-woogie for it first.