Banzai Izakaya

Hands down, the best drink establishment in Okayama Prefecture.

 

Review for Okayama Prefecture's Restaurant Guide

As you wander the streets of Nonogawa's traditional district in the evening, you spot a red lantern hanging from one of the small shop/residences, announcing the casual, down home, friendly, and inexpensive type of izakaya. A blue noren banner in front of the door says Banzai in bold katakana script. The name may be a tad audacious for a rural town, but it brings a smile from newcomers, like us.  
Tanuki statue wearing a wide straw hat and carrying sake
by John Hill
Outside, a friendly tanuki statue greets you as he holds up a bottle of sake. It couldn't have just winked, could it?   When you peek in the bar's window, all but one of the dozen seats is occupied. The tempting scent of grilling meat entices you to enter. Instantly, you're greeted with a hearty, "Irasshaimase!" and you take the empty seat at the counter where you can watch today's special, yakitori, being prepared and chat with the proprietor.   When you receive your order, the chicken is grilled to perfection, and the recommended yuzu sake from the town's own Nagashima Brewery is an excellent pairing.   — ★★★★½ Dr. Aya Ginji, restaurant critic and local physician

 

The Barkeep / Owner

Noda Futoshi's hospitality will make you feel right at home as soon as you step inside. He's quite outgoing, but it's the kind where he uses his energy to focus on others.

Japanese pub where a cook is gilling meat

by Kazuo Ota

Noda grilling yakitori and chatting with his regulars.

 

Legacy

Banzai isn't about fantastic adventures, the atmosphere, or even the excellent food and drink. It's about connections. More lifelong friendships have been created in the pub than anywhere else in Nonogawa.  

TEAM SECRETS AVAILABLE

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Team Umeji Team Nakamura Team Soujoubou (Book 2)
or all three?

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Ground floor. Not to scale.

 

Location

Nonogawa
The small town of Nonogawa in Okayama Prefecture.
 
Architecture
A traditional style row house and shop combo.
Construction Date
1920
Alternative Names
Noda's
Type
Pub / Tavern / Restaurant
Parent Location
Owner


Cover image: by Falco Negenman

Comments

Author's Notes

The tavern challenge was perfect in two ways. I got to write about izakaya, one of my favorite parts of visiting Kyoto and the last night of our tour. Plus I get to write the setting for a new short story about Noda and Aya, which I started as part of the February vssCollab challenge.  


Image notes
The noren curatain image above, was from an actual izakaya. I had a blast modifying the name on the front to fit for my article. Note, the perfect kanji 酒 (sake/alcohol) in the upper right corner was already there!


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8 Mar, 2022 08:02

I want to say this was a lovely article, Love the maps you used!, one to show what the layout looks like and the other a map!. you set the mood and even what we could smell at this tavern, Well done!

8 Mar, 2022 11:42

Izakaya, they are truly the home pubs we need. I almost felt like sitting in one and smelling that great yakitori. I also love the addition of the little secrets! Gives it just that little bit extra. ^^   Keep up the good work! :D

It's the most wonderful time of the year, with words being written, and fantasies twittin' you, be of good cheer. It's the most wonderful time of the year.   My World Ember Entries
9 Mar, 2022 08:43

A really nice short article, which is a delight to read and real easy on the eyes too. I also really like the narration style here. But that statue is definitely sus.

9 Mar, 2022 15:47

Nice article.   It's cool seeing a Japanese style tavern amongst all the Western entries.   -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------   Feel free to check out my Tavern Challenge article if you want to see what I am up to! The Black Hare Tavern

12 Mar, 2022 03:11

This was a lovely short article. I enjoyed the narrative style of writing as opposed to the usual wiki type of writing. It was a fun and easy read with a clean layout and nice pictures as always. c :

15 Mar, 2022 14:02

This is a great article. I totally want to join one of taverns and just dig into the food! Such a great article!

Please check out my article for the Tavern Challenge! The Black Haired Dog!
17 Mar, 2022 20:15

It is rare to see modern bars and restaurants as part of this challenge! The pictures give this a very professional-like feeling. This feels like reading a Google review of a restaurant rather than one on World Anvil, and that is good! Also I enjoy the "choose your team" action!

Que the wardrums! Check out my bloodied river, running from the heart of the jungle:River Arteria!
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