Take a stroll south from the station area and enter one of the small alleyways in Kameido, where a distinct shitamachi atmosphere still lingers on, and you’ll notice a faint liquor aroma emanating from beyond a door decorated with an elegant lamp. Standing out from its rough-and-ready surroundings, this is the entrance to the counter-only Branche, a magical space with seats for six eager imbibers.
No longer a newcomer in the neighbourhood, it’s been inviting patrons to rest their wings – hence the name – over a drink for a full decade now. Owner and bartender Takeshi Sato sourced ingredients for restaurants and spent time behind the counter at legendary Shin-Koiwa bar Fust Carlent before opening his own spot. Boasting quite a collection of rare bottles and quality cigars, he charms visitors with both top tipples and fancy appetisers. Branche is the kind of bar you’ll want to come back to over and over.