BeerMa Kanda The Bottom Line
BeerMa Kanda – what is it trying to be? The taplist can be found in other places for cheaper but the bottle selection is one of the best in Japan – let alone Tokyo. If you’re going to buy bottles, then BeerMa Kanda is a great place to do that but make sure you take them away to drink as EACH bottle opened on the premises incurs a ¥200 corkage fee. Yep, even those small ¥300 cans. So best buy some to take away and drink in the local park. The whole place is non-smoking with no table charge and prices include tax.
BeerMa Kanda The Full Review
BeerMa, or World Beer Market as it used to be called, was a stalwart of our trips to the barren north eastern parts of Tokyo – when we had to venture that way. The huge selection of beers meant that we always came with something, but the trip up there was always a drag. And heavy. So it meant beers were bought online from their web portal. But then, suddenly one day, those prices went up – to be expected – but the price went up by almost ¥200 a bottle – suspicious but when you’re the biggest online retailer of craft beer in Japan, you kind of have the market in your hand. How to write a review of a building that has three different, but linked, sections to it.
BeerMa Kanda opened in 2018 to much fanfare, in the Kanda area of Tokyo – an area that is fast trying to establish itself as the craft beer capital of, well, the capital of Japan. It consists of three floors – the 1st floor being the bar part, the 2nd floor being the bottle shop – more on that later – and the basement floor being the glassware and goods floor. Not much to say about that really, but if you want your glasses and t-shirts and knickknacks, then you’re in heaven.
First, the bar. There is space for about 20 people seated inside, with plenty of space for people to stand and drink in. The whole place is non-smoking and there is no table charge either. Being a craft beer seller means BeerMa Kanda often has different beers on each day. The beers generally come in three sizes: small (265ml) from ¥800, medium (324ml) from ¥1,000, and large (400ml) from ¥1,100. Thankfully all the prices include tax as those prices put BeerMa Kanda at the more expensive end for craft beer in Tokyo.
The second floor – a bemusing place to drink. Lots and lots of beer to choose from yet for every beer you want to drink in store, you HAVE to pay ¥200 – and that’s for every thing regardless of size – a rip off if you ask us! While you can take the beers away, it is ridiculous to have pay a fee on top of a beer that already has been marked up for sale. And the online prices reflect that! Yes, even the online prices for the beers have gone up by anywhere between by ¥150 to ¥200 a bottle. I bought six beers in-store, which I then checked up online on the same site – with the prices online being more expensive AND then you have to pay shipping. So if you’re in the area, then pick up the beers here rather than buying online it seems. There are also two nitro taps going, with medium beers costing the same as the first floor at ¥1,000.
I didn’t stay for any of the food – mainly because there was nothing on tap I was prepared to drink (Ballast Point tap takeover – sounds like a case for an angry soapbox!) and also the fact that I had to pay¥200 to open a ¥500 bottle of beer put me off.
BeerMa Kanda Details
Open: Weekdays 16:00 – 23:00 Saturdays 16:00 – 23:00 Sunday 15:00 – 21:00
Happy Hour: None
Homepage (in Japanese): N/A
How to Get to BeerMa Kanda
The closest station to BeerMa Kanda is Kanda on the JR Keihin-Tōhoku Line, Yamanote Line, and Chūō Line (Rapid) as well as the Tokyo Metro Tokyo Metro Ginza Line line. You can also get there from Shin-Nihombashi station on the Sōbu Line (Rapid).