Wednesday, July 22, 2015

The Great British Pub - just the ticket in the summer heat of Japan

When I began working in the City, many years ago, it was the norm to enjoy a pint of the landlord's finest at lunch. These days though, this practice has all but gone the way of the dinosaur. No longer is the pub lunch considered an appropriate start to the afternoon, and probably reasonably so, we never did get that much done after 1.30 on a Friday. However the pubs that haven't closed their doors and rung time on their customers have found a way forward in the UK where TenguLife has been travelling these past few weeks.

The focus of the English Pub is clearly now on food and family, and an excellent few lunches were sampled during the tour. Which marks a serious contradiction with the opportunities in Japan of a lunchtime. Although everyone obviously has lunch (and many still smoke like chimneys over both their, and everyone else's, cuisine) the concept of a pub-lunch extending into an afternoon has never really caught on. The small eateries typically open at 11.30 and close for business around 2.00 leaving those looking for a beer and a chat, out of luck until the early evening shift comes around.

And this begs the question why don't pubs exist in Japan (outside of those more of a novelty attraction)? An English Country Pub with good food and a wide selection of ambience would be a welcome addition to life in Tokyo providing the location for that vital 3.30pm discussion that just can't wait until the evening. However they don't exist and watering holes are few and far between of an afternoon. But if you do find one, ask for your beer "awa-nashi de". You'll be surprised how much  more you receive in your glass if you do. And in this summer's heat, kampai!

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