Flamenco Bar in Golden Gai

Golden Gai is a tiny area of micro bars near Shinjuku Station, Tokyo. That’s micro bars, not micro brews. Micro as in seating six people. Seriously. The exteriors are not much to look at, but nothing is open in the daytime so few notice:

Photographing doors in Golden Gai was one of my stops in Shinjuku. I was underwhelmed. This door is nothing special but it was the only place with brick walls and had the only Spanish language sign, Rincon* Flamenco Nana:

Googling turned up the facts and the stories. Is this the world’s smallest Flamenco bar? Legend is Nana-san opened the bar in 1963, using it to spread her love of Flamenco music and culture. After 40 years she sold it to a man who was also one of the pioneers of Flamenco in Japan. Flamenco dance is a niche, but there are enough Japanese fans to support the world’s only monthly Flamenco magazine (site is in Japanese, open in Chrome for best translation). A Spaniard doesn’t have to enjoy Flamenco or be from Andalusia to know of this tiny cultural outpost in Tokyo.

Official site, in Japanese

*Rincon means corner or nook, a good name for a tiny place on a corner.


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