Jan. 25, 2021 UPDATE
Story & Recommendation
Enjoy a moment of bliss at this small hole-in-the-wall bar along Alleyway 13
The central Kyoto streets of Pontocho and Kiyamachi are weaved together by countless alleyways. Among these is Alleyway 13, which is famous for its abundance of popular bars and pubs. BAR Sand is one such popular Alleyway 13 bar and is located about a 10 minute walk north of Hankyu Kawaramachi Station. In this small space with seating for a total of 10, including counter seating for 5 and a single table for 5, customers are seated closely and naturally fall into lively conversation with one another. The first thing that’ll catch your eye as you enter the bar is the beautiful and various-shaped glasses that line the wall of the counter. The one-of-a-kind glasses were produced by the glass maker Genta Suzuki and play a part in the interior décor of the bar. Drinks on offer include liqueur, meticulously selected whisky and beer that’s offered nowhere else in Kyoto but here. The manager, a female bartender with a background in the hotel industry, makes the most delicate, beautiful and delicious cocktails ever. Apparently, she can accommodate almost any request from standard to original cocktails, so why not request a fitting cocktail for your night in Kyoto and enjoy a moment of bliss at this wonderfully hidden away bar.
Local beer BAREN ALT / ￥1,000
BAREN ALT is a beer produced in Iwate Prefecture and characterized by its reddish-brown color and floral aroma. The beer is light with a pleasant flavor and is a fitting choice for starting off your night. At BAR Sand, in addition to BAREN ALT, they also have BAREN SCHWARZ black beer, and BAREN RADLER, which is beer mixed with lemonade, on offer for a limited time.
THE YAMAZAKI SINGLE MOLT WHISKY / ￥1,500
The Japanese Single Malt Whiskey YAMAZAKI is of course also available for your enjoyment at this bar. At BAR Sand, a wide range of domestic and imported whiskies are served, and domestic whiskies that are popular among international visitors such as YAMAZAKI, HAKUSHU YOICHI TAKETSURU are always in stock.
Original Moscow Mule / ￥1,000
The Original Moscow Mule is made with the bar’s famous homemade ginger syrup. The ginger syrup, which takes two days to make, and the spices inside the drink create a stronger aroma and flavor compared to the standard Moscow Mule, but the drink is very refreshing and goes down smooth and easy.
Portonic / ￥1,000
Portonic is made with white port wine from Portugal and tonic water. This cocktail that looks clean and cool to the eye is something that would hit the spot on a slightly hot day. The bar offers standard cocktails, but any drink request can be accommodated, so talk with the bartender so you can enjoy a drink that suits your palate. All cocktails are 1,000 JPY and up.
How to Order
There are no drink menus so please ask the bartender. The bar serves simple side dishes that are written on the small blackboard inside the bar. Some side dishes change from day to day, so before ordering, it is recommended that you ask the bartender what would go well with what you are drinking.
- Order Tips -
A rich variety of liqueurs are available and the bartender can make cocktails at your request. The bartender can speak some simple English, so don’t hesitate to request any drink you want.