This beer hall that sparked Harmonica’s reinvention is located right in the middle of the yokocho. The ground floor is an open standing area while the second floor features an unusually spacious seating area. Doubling as a liquor store, Ahiru offers a well-stocked variety of beverages such as sake, wine and Belgian draft beer at reasonable prices. Food wise, the melt-in-your-mouth tender diced stead (¥1,250) is your best bet.
Located a short walk from the north exit of Kichijoji Station, Harmonica Yokocho gets its name from the way its many small establishments are arranged – scattered vertically and horizontally, much like its namesake musical instrument. This popular yokocho was originally a flea market in 1940s post-war Japan, but in the late ’90s, a number of modern bars and restaurants began to set up shop here (starting with the stylish Ahiru Beer Hall). This attracted a younger set of clientele, transforming the area into the cool hangout that it is today. A morning market is held here on the third Sunday of every month, from 7am to 10am. Here are our top five picks from Harmonica Yokocho.