When he’s not busy running one of his own establishments, chances are Nagumo is out exploring Ginza’s nightlife scene. One of his favorite spots? Bar Lupin (Tsukamoto Fudosan Building, B1F, 5-5-11 Ginza, Chuo; +81-3-3571-0750), a cocktail lounge steeped in history, and with an old Tokyo atmosphere that still lives on. Opened in 1928, it immediately became a hangout for famous writers, and today, it revels in its own nostalgia with pamphlets in English and Japanese telling the stories of Lupin's many incarnations; the walls lined with photos of former patrons, and members of the Japanese literati.
Photo courtesy of mitzimee.com.
To keep up with trends in the world of cocktailing, Nagumo visits his friend and peer, Kazuo Uyeda, who has created a name for himself in the world of molecular gastronomy. You'll find Uyeda behind the bar most nights at Tender (Nogakudo Building, 5th Floor, 6-5-15 Ginza, Chuo; +81-3-3571-8343), the place for shaken drinks. Credited with inventing the “hard shake,” which vigorously moves ice around inside the shaker, Uyeda insists his technique produces a better tasting cocktail. Star Bar (1-5-13 Ginza, Chuo; +81-3-3535-8005), also takes cocktail temperature seriously. Their secret? Perfectly hand-carved ice, and an ever-evolving drink menu that changes with the seasons.