Naka-Meguro is one express stop southwest of Shibuya on the Tokyu Toyoko Line. And, like its one-stop counterparts on other commuter lines, the shopping streets closest to the station tend to attract a high concentration of eateries and bars all vying for your post-work cash. But like anywhere in Tokyo, you will often find the best bars tucked away in unexpected places -- uncharted corners that require a local guide.

In this case, veteran Nakameguro drinker and night navigator Bob asked me if I'd be interested in plotting a bar-hop through his 'hood. And that's always a yes, especially if it's coming from a local like Bob.

Aside from two hangovers, the result is a short list of four user-friendly hangouts, two new ones (Slow Jam and East) and two already known to me (Yatai and Boys Town Cafe). And, as if that symmetry wasn't enough, the two new ones are located to the west (toward Yutenji) and the other two to the north (off Yamate-dori, toward Ikejiri/Mishiku).