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Mikkeller to Bring Craft, Scandinavia to Tokyo

Mikkeller Tokyo Coming soon

Mikkel Borg Bjergsø always has a new project up his sleeve. As projects go, this one is fairly ambitious – trying to upgrade the beer scene in Tokyo. While craft is growing in Japan’s largest city and Tokyo made The Beer Connoisseur list of Top 20 Beer Cities in the World, maybe the Mikkeller touch is what’s needed to bring craft beer all the way out of subculture status. Here’s the release:

June 2, 2015 - [email protected] Mikkeller is invading Tokyo.

In late July, Danish craft beer legend Mikkel Borg Bjergsø is opening his ­rst bar in Japan in the Tomigaya area of Shibuya.

"Why are we coming to Tokyo? Tokyo is my favorite city in the world, the coolest city in the world. If it weren't for my family, I would move here now and explore the food, the drink, the city, everyday," said Bjergsø.

Along with Japanese guest beers, Mikkel will put more than 80 of "the craziest, the best" beers from around the world on 20 rotating taps. Doing so will help "make Mikkeller Tokyo an important participant in the Japanese craft beer scene, challenge Japanese brewers to pursue new styles, and expose the best Japanese beers to a new global audience."

Mikkeller has turned to the Fuglen owners Einar, Halvor and Peppe, the Norwegian co‑ee, cocktail bar, and vintage furniture gurus with outlets in Tokyo and Oslo, as their local partners and project managers. Fuglen’s in-house interior designer Wakiko Fukuda is executing the design collaboration between Fuglen and Mikkeller.

Mikkeller Tokyo will resist current trends of imitating Brooklyn or putting a Japanese facade on foreign brands. Moreover, "Mikkeller Tokyo won't be some dark pub with TVs and guys talking about beer, or a foreign bar dropped into Tokyo," said Bjergsø “The bar will blend vintage and modern Japanese and Scandanvian elements. We want it to feel organic to both Mikkeller and this neighborhood, a bit Danish to a Japanese customer and a bit Japanese to a Danish one,” explained Fukuda.

In addition to the eight bars around the world, Mikkeller has produced over 600 innovative varieties of beer in just ten years, and is consistently ranked as one of the top breweries in the world. Mikkeller has also brewed house beers for the top restaurant in the world, Noma, and other Michelin starred restaurants including Alinea, Kiin Kiin, and Amass.

Summing up the project as general manger, globe trotting bartender and 5-year Tokyo veteran Hamilton Shields said that, "The world's eyes are on what's happening in food and drink in Tokyo. Mikkeller Tokyo is going to put beer at the center of that. We're building the bar we want to drink at in the city that everyone wants to be in, and it's going to kick ass. See you there!"