March 18, 2016
Now, we were a bit hesitant before filming this episode. This place was awesome to us, but our experience of Japanese bars is still pretty limited. What if a place like this is standard? We’ve only been here for two months, after all. In those two months, though, we can say that this place, hands down, is the best bar we’ve been to, not only in Japan, but in the world, in a pretty long time.
Now that’s a bold thing to say. We’ve done a lot of traveling and have eaten at a lot of places. But here we feel so…happy. So happy! The people running this place are so fun, so inviting. You know, the reason why we found this place initially was just a fluke. We walked passed it many times before, and we saw that it was always packed. One day we looked more closely at the sign, and we saw one of the staff shout “COME ON! COME IN!” from behind closed doors. And we could hear him from outside, which means the people inside must have REALLY heard him. We had a good chuckle. Then we came back with a friend the next day, and totally fell in love with the place.
And it’s not just us that thinks this. We were filming with ____ and he was totally blown away as well, and he’s been living here a lot longer than we have. He, too, thinks this is the best Izakaya he’s ever been to. And he’ll be coming here without us. I’m sure we’ll probably walk passed it one day and glance inside to see ____ sitting there eating all they have to offer.
Places like this feel really special to me. You see a bunch of people with such great attitudes. They’re so much fun. Lots of restaurants you go to have people working there that hate their jobs, but these guys, they love it. They love the food they make (and it’s great food!). Or is it great food? I think so, but I’m also thinking that things taste a lot better when you’re happy and smiling. What’s the opposite of a dive bar? Dive bars are usually dark and sad and you drink there alone and grunt and things stink and life sucks. This is a swim bar. Not a dive bar. A swim bar. Is that a good analogy? I don’t know.
And, I gotta say, I felt a bit bad when filming this video at first. I was really worried about being a loud and obnoxious foreigner, and I felt really guilty about it, but I realized after a while that everyone was in equally loud spirits. You might have seen in our other videos in public we’re a lot quieter than usual. Well, we could be our naturally loud selves at this place. It feels like home! And everyone was really welcoming. Not just the staff, but everyone sitting beside us. To the right of us was a couple on a date. They came from the subway stop that’s close to the closest Ikea (I don’t remember the name). She’s in university for music and he’s a chef in the area. They both came because this place is supposedly famous (yay!). We didn’t get this on camera, but we all started sharing food and drinks together. We literally just met them and we would say “here! Try some of this sake!” and they would tell us to try theirs, and we shared some Yakisoba with them and they shared some kimuchi (IT WAS GREAT!). Then after they left the people to the left of us were on a date as well. She was in university for art and he worked at something I can’t remember because we spoke with them at the end of the night after too many glasses of sake. But I remember them being very nice. I remember everyone being nice. And the guy next to them got very drunk and we all in the restaurant chanted something which made him have to drink his entire glass at once.
Anyhow, we love this place, and we can talk about it forever. We’ll tell a story about it for our next Eatyoursushi episode. Wait: no, our next NEXT episode. We already filmed our next episode. We’ll talk about a fun story from here in the episode after that. I feel like we can talk about this place every week. Hell, let’s just set up a camera here and shoot it live with these guys!
If you’d like to go here (and you definitely have to, because we love it more than anything), the place is called Bakawarai Junsui. Here’s their website. The address is 1-10-22 Kichijoji Kitamachi, Musashino 180-0001, Tokyo. If you call and make a reservation, they’ll leave an egg on your spot, and then cook with that egg. Their number is 0422-20-3550.
Otherwise, if you want to see some more fun, we’ve got extra scenes below!