Food & Drink | TOKYO FOOD FILE

Ohka The Best Days: Craft beer and 'gyoza' keep Nakameguro's old spirit alive

by Robbie Swinnerton

It’s getting hard to remember the days when “Nakame” — the local nickname for Naka-Meguro — was funky and alternative, before the river got cleaned up and gentrification set in. But there are still pockets of the old neighborhood vibe to be found if you wander far enough from the station; places like Ohka The Best Days.

It’s an easygoing bar with a laidback atmosphere that more than lives up to the superlative name and a nice deck with a couple of outside tables. The well-thumbed menu, printed to look like yellow legal paper with revisions hand-written on colored tape, is short and to the point. Basically it consists of homemade gyōza (pot stickers) and simple bar snacks, all intended to go with the high-quality craft beer — six taps, both local and imported — that is Ohka’s true raison d’etre.

If you like garlic and pakchi (coriander), you’ve come to the right place. Where else in town can you find combinations such as pakchi salsa or even a pak-cheese (with melted cheese, obviously) version of gyōza? And if you need something more substantial, Ohka also offers hearty pork donburi (rice bowls).