MenuBack

BAR-HOPPING IN KOENJI, TOKYO: JAPAN OTAKU CAFES, NAKANO ANIME MANGA COSPLAY STORES.


Koenji bars and clubs, Japanese otaku cafes, nakano Broadway mall, anime manga cosplay stores, Koenji subway station in Tokyo Japan, red bicycle, British boy.

A makeup-free Happy Phantom took La Carmina on an alcohol-fueled romp through Koenji, the Tokyo district where he resides (although he’s now moving in with Dravarious). Nakano is a station away — home to the Broadway mall, or mini-Akihabara, where you’ll find cosplay, anime, toys, manga and (to my delight) kawaii jigsaw puzzles. Koenji is as much of a geek-fest.

First, we stopped for cheap fast food — which, in Japan, means vegetarian tempura and miso soup. I doused my bowl with my beloved shichimi togarashi (7-spice powder).

Rockabilly curry house, 1980s restaurant interior decoration, pink walls, vinyl records on walls, Beatles sgt pepper album cover, cream soda skull crossbones sign, Koenji bars and clubs, Japanese otaku cafes, nakano Broadway mall, anime manga cosplay stores, Tokyo Japan cool cafe.

Koenji has one of the oddest restaurant mish-mashes you’ll encounter: a rockabilly curry house. My 80s-inspired outfit fit in with the hot pink walls and vinyl discs hanging from the ceiling.

Matching Mole bar in Koenji, weird David Cronenberg and David Lynch bars and clubs, hentai art, fingernails bloody sculpture, odd restaurants Japanese otaku cafes, nakano Broadway mall, anime manga cosplay stores

If David Lynch and David Cronenberg opened a bar, it would be The Matching Mole (3-45-1, Eiwa building 3F, Koenji-minami). The owner is a glum otaku who surrounds himself with bloody fake fingernail sculptures and disemboweled cat keychains. Not even my friend’s Banana Brothers art could lift the gloom of the disturbing hentai.

Koenji Vamp bar, Japanese mask, vintage retro 1980s Japan tv stars and movie posters, Japanese beer, bars and clubs, Japanese otaku cafes, nakano Broadway mall, anime manga cosplay stores.

Off to Vamp Bar, a retro-cluttered hole manned by a rock chick. She showed us camera-phone photos of her thrash band; we forced her to watch our YouTube videos. (You, too, should subscribe to his and my channel.)

Koenji bars and clubs, The Ring DVD cover Japan, 100 yen grab bin, golf club, Diablo, Rock bar vamp, sound studio dom, Japanese rock alternative music clubs, otaku restaurants and nerd cafes, nakano Broadway mall, anime manga cosplay stores, nightlife in Japan

On the way out, we stumbled across a 100 yen ($1) grab box. What do you think Happy Phantom took? The golf club, of course!

The next time you’re in Tokyo, come to Koenji for an unusual and inexpensive bar-hopping experience. If you run into Manabu (the emo kid with the hot Prince Valiant haircut), tell him we say hello!

Song of the Day #189: My cat Basil Farrow loves to listen to classical music… he’s currently dangling from a chair and twitching his ears to this Mozart playlist.

SHARE & COMMENT

34 Comments

  1. Posted September 1, 2009 at 2:49 pm | Permalink

    I'm not 21 yet.
    And even when I turn 21 I don't plan on drinking alot.
    But these places still look fun.
    ….
    And disturbing, *cough* The Matching Mole *cough*

  2. Posted September 1, 2009 at 9:49 pm | Permalink

    I’m not 21 yet.
    And even when I turn 21 I don’t plan on drinking alot.
    But these places still look fun.
    ….
    And disturbing, *cough* The Matching Mole *cough*

    • Posted September 2, 2009 at 1:55 am | Permalink

      Super freaky, not going to lie :)

  3. Posted September 1, 2009 at 6:53 pm | Permalink

    I'm borderline offended by you calling my hood an “otaku district”. :P

  4. Posted September 1, 2009 at 6:53 pm | Permalink

    :D

  5. Posted September 1, 2009 at 6:55 pm | Permalink

    Super freaky, not going to lie :)

  6. Posted September 1, 2009 at 7:02 pm | Permalink

    Hahah have you stepped foot in The Matching Mole??? :P Any other Koenji haunts we missed? I know there's a Beatles bar.

  7. Posted September 1, 2009 at 7:04 pm | Permalink

    Sure, there r shops where I can buy a Slurpee cup from 1977 or an M&M's doll circa 1983, but to call it an “otaku DISTRICT”…

  8. Posted September 1, 2009 at 8:01 pm | Permalink

    Seems like fun, I really wish I were 21 now!… If only I had a bunch o birthdays comin up!! haha
    I still have 2 wait 2 yrs…

    you could count me in for some bar-hopping If I were though ^-^
    although not 2 sure about The Matching Mole… 0.o
    lol

  9. Posted September 1, 2009 at 8:46 pm | Permalink

    Hentai themed cafes?!!! ONLY IN JAPAN! LOL

  10. Posted September 2, 2009 at 1:53 am | Permalink

    I’m borderline offended by you calling my hood an “otaku district”. :P

    • Posted September 2, 2009 at 2:02 am | Permalink

      Hahah have you stepped foot in The Matching Mole??? :P Any other Koenji haunts we missed? I know there’s a Beatles bar.

      • Posted September 2, 2009 at 2:04 am | Permalink

        Sure, there r shops where I can buy a Slurpee cup from 1977 or an M&M’s doll circa 1983, but to call it an “otaku DISTRICT”…

  11. Posted September 2, 2009 at 1:53 am | Permalink

    :D

  12. Posted September 2, 2009 at 3:01 am | Permalink

    Seems like fun, I really wish I were 21 now!… If only I had a bunch o birthdays comin up!! haha
    I still have 2 wait 2 yrs…

    you could count me in for some bar-hopping If I were though ^-^
    although not 2 sure about The Matching Mole… 0.o
    lol

  13. Posted September 2, 2009 at 3:46 am | Permalink

    Hentai themed cafes?!!! ONLY IN JAPAN! LOL

  14. Posted September 1, 2009 at 11:39 pm | Permalink

    ready to send for me?

  15. Posted September 1, 2009 at 11:39 pm | Permalink

    oooh…you need to stop by Gojira-ya 2 in Koenji. It's a cute little toy themed bar. Gojira-ya (1) is a classic toy store just a bit up the street

  16. Posted September 2, 2009 at 6:39 am | Permalink

    ready to send for me?

  17. Posted September 2, 2009 at 6:39 am | Permalink

    oooh…you need to stop by Gojira-ya 2 in Koenji. It’s a cute little toy themed bar. Gojira-ya (1) is a classic toy store just a bit up the street

  18. Posted September 2, 2009 at 10:36 am | Permalink

    Wow, that hentai picture. Yep, that's something David Lynch would definitely put in his cafe(wouldn't be surprised if it's part of the decor in his home).

  19. Posted September 2, 2009 at 10:37 am | Permalink

    There were other disturbing pictures but I felt this one was enough!

  20. Posted September 2, 2009 at 5:36 pm | Permalink

    Wow, that hentai picture. Yep, that’s something David Lynch would definitely put in his cafe(wouldn’t be surprised if it’s part of the decor in his home).

    • Posted September 2, 2009 at 5:37 pm | Permalink

      There were other disturbing pictures but I felt this one was enough!

  21. Posted September 2, 2009 at 2:07 pm | Permalink

    hey, i haven't congrats you on your new err job (?) if you can call getting money from your hobby a job that is =D hahaha. keep it the good work

  22. Posted September 2, 2009 at 9:07 pm | Permalink

    hey, i haven’t congrats you on your new err job (?) if you can call getting money from your hobby a job that is =D hahaha. keep it the good work

  23. Posted October 11, 2009 at 5:03 am | Permalink

    Matching mole has the worst coffee in Japan. Walls are depressingly black. Only been there in daytime though. The cheapest bar in Koenji is Aburi all drinks and food 390 yen!!!! for example gin and tonic with Taquaray gin still 390!!!! no Gordons crap.

  24. Posted October 11, 2009 at 6:48 am | Permalink

    Hahah that place is one of a kind…

  25. Posted October 11, 2009 at 12:03 pm | Permalink

    Matching mole has the worst coffee in Japan. Walls are depressingly black. Only been there in daytime though. The cheapest bar in Koenji is Aburi all drinks and food 390 yen!!!! for example gin and tonic with Taquaray gin still 390!!!! no Gordons crap.

  26. Posted October 11, 2009 at 12:03 pm | Permalink

    Matching mole has the worst coffee in Japan. Walls are depressingly black. Only been there in daytime though. The cheapest bar in Koenji is Aburi all drinks and food 390 yen!!!! for example gin and tonic with Taquaray gin still 390!!!! no Gordons crap.

  27. Posted October 11, 2009 at 1:48 pm | Permalink

    Hahah that place is one of a kind…

Post a Reply to hilldomain

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked with *

*
*