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We finally made it to Shonzui the other day. Not that it’s particularly hard to find, it’s just that it has taken us far too long to get around to visiting this friendly little wine bar down in Roppongi.

Shonzui has been with us since 1993, but it’s always shunned the limelight. Unlike so many other establishments that were spawned during the early years of Japan’s infatuation with wine, it’s a laid-back, undemonstrative place that feels as if it should belong in one of our neighborhood drinking alleys — Koenji, perhaps, or Shimokitazawa — not here, within spitting distance of the soft, fleshy underbelly of Minato Ward.

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