Nakameguro is an interesting town. Located just two stations away from Shibuya, it has a serene yet vibrant atmosphere. Walk along the Meguro river, and you will be met by many shops, restaurants and cafes with a style of its own.
THE HANGAR is a “sake stand” that serves sake with the French “Apero” way which is quite unique in Japan. It is completely different from Izakayas (the Japanese version of English pubs), which are usually more traditional and filled with colleagues that gather after a long and hard day’s work. As you can tell from the facade, HANGAR is very modern and refined. They serve sake using wine glasses and appetizers that go along with sake.
The owner, Yoshiaki Soma is a designer and a businessman, running rental studios in Nakameguro and Ebisu. He has had a passion for sake, and in 2015, he opened HANGAR. HANGAR consists of two floors, the first floor is the sake stand and the basement is a gallery.
As much as we all enjoy drinking sake, there is so much more to sake, like its history, traditions and culture. Using the gallery space below, HANGAR occasionally holds event to promote the world around sake.
In October of 2016, they held a three day event that featured “shuki”, or sake vessels in English. The works of three potters, Naotsugu Yoshida, Koichi Ohara and Satoshi Nishigaki chosen by Saiko Ena were displayed and sake pairing using the vessels took place. Saiko is the founder of UTSU-WA?, that delivers the fascinations and potentials of pottery, and she carefully selected the works of three contemporary potters.
The taste of sake actually changes from the shape and material that is used in the vessel. It is important to choose the vessel that matches the type of sake that you drink in order to enjoy sake at its utmost potential. At this event, Yoshiaki chose three types of sake to match each vessel. He is also a qualified Kikisake-shi, which can be described as a Sake Sommelier and visits breweries and selects sake from throughout Japan, so it is also interesting to learn about the unique characters of the sake that he serves.
I brought home with me the vessel made by Koichi Ohara. The texture of the soil and how the vessel shines when sake is poured in is just beautiful, and drinking sake has become a bigger treat!
THE HANGAR website (in Japanese only)
1-14-6 Kami-meguro, Meguro-ku