Photojournalism, Portrait, Tokyo

Tokyo Bars – Bar Ben Fiddich in Shinjuku

Tokyo is a great place to be a photographer. In a city this big you’re going to find a lot of world class institutions, and one such institution that Tokyo is not lacking in is cocktail bars. In this post, budget airline carrier Jetstar commissioned me to photograph one certain Bar Ben Fiddich for their in-flight magazine、and let me tell you, photographing bars are some of the shoots that I most look forward to. Mainly because you get to drink the subject matter afterwards!

Bar Ben Fiddich is located in Shinjuku, and would have been impossible to find if I hadn’t been told about it. The feel when you walk in is similar to that of an apothecary or the potions room in Harry Potter – the shelves behind the bar are lined with big glass jars filled with all manner of exotic spices and seasonings. The owner Kayama-san is actually a big absinthe fan, and studied in Switzerland in order to learn how to make it himself. I tasted a little of his home-brewed absinthe and was pleasantly surprised by its taste and fragrance. Up until then I had thought of it as the kind of drink you imbibe when you’re feeling you don’t have enough lawsuits in your life. Kayama-san also makes a mean cocktail too, as you can clearly see in the photos. For the purposes of the article, he is making a muscat-flavored gin infusion thing (which I’ve embarrassingly forgotten the name of), but I do remember that it tasted AMAZING.

Anyway here are the details for anyone wishing to visit the bar and check it out:
Bar Ben Fiddich
Nishishinjuku, 1 Chome−13−7, 9th Floor

Enjoy the photos!

Shinjuku Bar Ben Fidditch (28)

Kayama-san pouring a glass of water – don’t worry it will come in useful later.

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Those are some premium looking grapes!

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A little bit of muddling and mashing

Shinjuku Bar Ben Fidditch (24)

Adding some fancy liqueur…

Shinjuku Bar Ben Fidditch (22)

Shaken and strained into a delightfully concentrated mix…

Shinjuku Bar Ben Fidditch (21)

Adding some spices for a bit of piquancy…

Shinjuku Bar Ben Fidditch (19)

Voila! Kayama-san places the cocktail on the glass of ice-water to cool it without diluting it

Shinjuku Bar Ben Fidditch (15)

Detail shot of the finished cocktail no #1…

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Detail shot #2

Shinjuku Bar Ben Fidditch (1)

The clean and cozy interior of the bar. I highly recommend checking it out!