You provide the alcohol, and Tsukada Nojo will take care of everything else.

Tsukada Nojo is a chain of izakaya bars that has been dutifully serving alcohol and small, delectable plates of food since the first one opened in 2007. Nojo means “farm”, and a highlight of Tsukada Nojo’s brand of bar-stool dining is that they source ingredients from their own affiliated farmers, particularly their chicken.

Alas, the global pandemic has cut down on all manner of public merriment, meaning that the only izakaya experiences available are home-crafted ones like this cute custom set-up. 4

But for those of us who don’t want to throw together our own cardboard lanterns and menu tablets, though, there’s Tsukada Nojo’s home drinking delivery service, and we leaped at the opportunity to try it out.

▼ We ordered a set for two, which cost 3,078 yen (US$29) plus shipping. Order at least one day in advance!

Take note of the paper pamphlet included atop the wrapped dishes, because it contains instructions for reheating all the items in the package that should be served hot. So let’s take out these dishes one by one and see what we can wash down with our bounty of store-bought liquor.

▼ Creamy, plush potato salad topped with a hard-boiled egg.

▼ Thick-cut bamboo shoots served in a marinade.

▼ Savory, grainy miso.

Naturally, there was a bounty of farm-raised chicken to tuck into, too.

▼ Steamed chicken in mala sauce. Look at that appetizing glaze!

▼ Charcoal-grilled chicken chunks.

▼ Chicken Nanban, deep-fried chicken steeped in a sweet-and-sour sauce, then topped with tartar sauce.

▼ Stewed, salted chicken broth to heal your soul in these trying times.

Of course, re-heating the dishes meant we weren’t enjoying them exactly as we might at a brick-and-mortar bar, so understandably they tasted a little different. The cold dishes felt identical to those you might order at Tsukada Nojo, and though preparing your own alcohol may feel like a hassle, it’s much easier to avoid breaking the bank on excess booze.

▼ Bottoms up!

There’s a fun little bonus that comes with the delivery set, too: an Umaibo snack.

▼ That’s “yummy stick” in English.

These cheap and tasty puffed corn snacks are often handed out at social functions or kids’ parties as a fun expression of goodwill. Why is it here in the box? Well, it’s not actually uncommon for your waiter at Tsukada Nojo to offer you an Umaibo stick when it’s time to settle up your bill. Customers may not be gifted an Umaibo every time at every store, but clearly Tsukada Nojo considered it enough a part of the process that they slipped an Umaibo into the delivery package too as a special treat.

The home delivery drinking service is available for the following areas in Japan:

Kanto: Tokyo, Kanagawa, Chiba, Saitama, Ibaraki, Tochigi, Gunma
Tohoku: Miyagi, Yamagata, Fukushima (excluding Aomori, Iwate, Akita)
Koshinetsu: Niigata, Nagano, Yamanashi
Hokuriku: Toyama, Ishikawa, Fukui
Tokai: Aichi, Gifu, Shizuoka, Mie
Kansai: Osaka, Kyoto, Hyogo, Shiga, Nara, Wakayama

Be aware that delivery may be limited if you’re located on an island away from the mainland, even inside the listed prefectures.

We still don’t know what the future holds for Tsukada Nojo once bars open back up wholesale, but in the meantime this is a great way to get your bar snack fix in a healthy and self-isolated capacity. Cheers!

Related: Tsukada Nojo
Images: ©SoraNews24

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