Flying Bumblebee

  • Bars and pubs
  • Daikanyama
  1. Flying Bumblebee
    Photo: Keisuke Tanigawa
  2. Flying Bumblebee entrance
    Photo: Keisuke Tanigawa
  3. Flying Bumblebee
    Photo: Keisuke TanigawaRamos gin fizz
  4. Flying Bumblebee
    Photo: Keisuke TanigawaNegroni at Flying Bumblebee
  5. Flying Bumblebee
    Photo: Keisuke Tanigawa
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Time Out says

Tucked away in a basement on a quiet Daikanyama side street, Flying Bumblebee is the kind of bar that seems destined to spread by word-of-mouth. The entrance, via a nondescript concrete staircase, means you’re unlikely to stumble upon this place by chance. Once inside, the low lighting, sleek design and trip hop soundtrack make Flying Bumblebee feel like a secret you just can’t keep to yourself.

Owned and run by bartender Ai Igarashi, whose experience ranges from managing Ebisu stalwart Bar Trench to stints at Singapore’s D2tllry and Maison Ikkoku, Flying Bumblebee is decidedly different from your typical Tokyo cocktail bar. Instead of a standard setup with the bartender on one side and the customers on another, Flying Bumblebee has an open plan layout. A dark marbled island bar dominates the room and there are stools on both sides, creating an instant sense of intimacy as Igarashi glides back and forth, serving drinks and chatting to regulars.

Don’t expect any hefty leather bound menus here – in keeping with the minimalist space, the bar takes a less-is-more approach to the drinks. The single page menu is split into five standard and five seasonal cocktails. The standard list includes classics like negroni, pisco sour (¥1,600), and, appropriately, James Bond’s signature vesper cocktail (¥1,800).

Meanwhile, the seasonal list has more playful creations like the decadent Financier Cocktail (¥1,600). Our favourite just might be the best ramos gin fizz in town, served in an oddly risqué glass (¥1,800). No doubt inspired by her time at Trench, Igarashi also offers a selection of absinthe (from ¥1,540) which you can enjoy via a traditional fountain or in a cocktail.

Feeling peckish? There’s no need to leave – you can order from a rotating roster of snacks, both savoury and sweet, to accompany your drinks. Bar standards like olives and basil cheese nuts (each ¥660) sit alongside desserts including small cakes made with citron, fig and anise (¥990).

Even in ever-cool Daikanyama, Flying Bumblebee manages to stand out as the sophisticated cocktail spot the neighbourhood needs.

Kit Kriewaldt
Written by
Kit Kriewaldt

Details

Address:
B1, 13-7 Daikanyama, Shibuya
Tokyo
Transport:
Daikanyama Station
Opening hours:
5pm-12midnight Wed-Mon, closed Tue
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