I guess if you’re desperately wanting some cans to takeaway, then Vanavasa is right up your street, but there are better places in the area, such as Rudy Brew, Magnetico, and Blue Room Craft Beer and Pizza that are better overall choices. That’s not to say Vanavasa is a bad place by any means – it is a nice, cosy, and friendly place but your money won’t go very far here. The whole place is non-smoking, has no table charge, and has an outside seating area so a good place to watch tourists and locals after a hard days touring. The owner speaks fluent English so if you’re new to beer, he can help you out with some suggestions.
For some reason, I decided to take on a new cycle tour, trying to get in as many bars before heading off home on the train for the day. However, I noticed that I had forgotten my bike bag so today was going to be a bad day – unless I could find a bike bag. Why the back story? Because it was the butterfly effect – and Vanavasa was on that radar.
Vanavasa is located about 2 minutes south of Kamakura station, an area that has seen an increasing number of craft beer bars, perhaps due to the local tourism industry helping to support the area during Covid-19. Vanavasa opened in November 2019 – talk about an auspicious time though with their background in being a bottle bar, as well as a place to drink in, that has held them well during the pandemic.
Vanavasa is a funny litle place – it’s located in a small art complex, with shops upstairs and downstairs, and there really isn’t much space inside, perhaps enough for 10 people inside at some various counter seats and stools. There is a small outside drinking area – a bench either side of the entrance, with some empty keg cases being used for table stands. It’s rather quaint and a nice little place in the sun. The whole place is non-smoking, has free WiFi and more importantly, no table charge.
In terms of atmosphere, Vanavasa is really what you make of it. When I went, ironically just before opening as they had decided to change the time that day, it was quiet with only me being the customer. That meant there was space to get to the back fridges, but I can imagine that after a long day of walking around Kamakura, this would be a good place to stop off for a quick beer.
Vanavasa has some alcohol spray and the staff were wearing masks. That was it.
I have to be honest here and say I didn’t get the chance to drink in Vanavasa because I forgot to bring a bike bag, but more importantly, I had arrived too early and the owner, who speaks fluent English, said that the staff member hadn’t turned up yet so he couldn’t serve any beers. I was free to grab a can from the fridge and drink out the front – but I had other plans instead (which, unbeknownst to me, would also fail but at this point in time, I didn’t know), so I got a couple of cans to go. However, Vanavasa does have four taps of craft beer on, with a split between domestic and imports, with beers coming in two sizes: half US pint (235 ml) from 700 yen, and pint (473 ml) from 1200 yen. They also do growler takeaways for 2 US pints from 2400 yen. There is no happy hour nor a beer flight.
With the fridges at the back of the bar, you can get cans to drink in or takeaway, though if you drink in, there is a corkage / bottle fee of 200 yen per beer. Not cheap at all, so a good idea is to get some beers, and then walk around if you can to the beach.
There was nothing there.
- Open : Monday to Saturday 12:00 – 20:00 (L.O 19:30) / Sunday 12:00 – 18:00 (L.O 17:30)
- Closed : N/A
- Happy Hour : N/A
- Phone : 0467-73-7076
- Homepage (in Japanese) : N/A
- Social Media : Instagram