Libushi One Paragraph Review
Libushi is pretty expensive compared to other taprooms that we’ve been to so make sure you have plenty of cash with you as it can get pricey quickly and they don’t accept credit cards. The whole bar is standing and if the weather is bad, it can get very hot and steamy inside. Moreover, make sure you have eaten beforehand as there is only some small snacks on sale. The atmosphere though was warm and friendly, prices included tax and it was no smoking. There wasn’t any wifi though so make sure you save those pictures for later and update them when you get back to the hotel.
Libushi Full Review
Libushi is the taproom for Anglo-Japanese Brewing Company, from here onwards shortened to AJB Co. for ease of writing, which is located immediately next door. The bar is on the main shopping street of Nozawaonsen and is also conveniently located across from a very nice, but boiling hot onsen. If you’re staying in the town, then you’ll probably pass the taproom on one of your many visits to the onsens or towards the ski slopes.
The taproom is all-standing unless you have some nice weather and choose to sit outside on the one of the four stools though it was pouring down when I turned up. It meant that everyone was crammed inside to the bar and staring at me with my yukata on, looking slightly worse for wear due to the rain and the previous beers at The Craft Room. There is about space for twenty people inside Libushi, though it did get pretty close in there when there were fifteen in there. The decor reminded me of the Craft Beer Market chain of bars, with white tiles on the walls and some nice Perlick taps sticking out of the wall.
Unfortunately, like The Craft Room, Libushi depends a lot on seasonal business which means that sometimes the beers run out. There are ten taps along with two handpumps and Libushi stocks predominantly AJB beers along with guest beers from across Japan. On the day I went, it seemed there had been a big rush on beers the day before as there were only two AJB Co. beers on tap – and they were both the same. The Soba Stout was the only beer on with a choice of either draft from the tap or hand pump. And the beers weren’t cheap. Beers came in two sizes; either UK pint (568ml) for ¥1,200 ~ ¥1,300 for AJB beers, or ¥1,300 ~ ¥1,400 for guest beers and half UK pint (284ml) for ¥650 ~ ¥700 for AJB Beers, or ¥700 ~ ¥800 for guest beers. There is also a tasting set for ¥2,000 which gets you four 180ml beers of your choice off the menu.
The food menu at Libushi was nigh on non-existent besides some popcorn and small snacks so I didn’t bother ordering anything.
Open Winter season: (3rd week of December to GW) Daily 16:00 ~ 23:00
Open Outside of season:
From May to December Friday & Saturday 16:00 ~ 22:00 Sunday 12:00 ~ 19:00 or until when the bar is not busy
Close Outside of season: Monday to Thursday but do check
How to Get to Libushi
If you’re staying in Nozawaonsen, then Libushi is situated towards the top-end of the route 38.