In the Tokyo Bar Guide Series, we spotlight drinking holes around Tokyo. The reasons we feature a bar may vary—a solid drink selection, good menu, ambiance, crowd—but our goal is the same: to discuss notable bars for your consideration.
Tokyo is a sprawling mega-city that’s strung together by a network of train stations. Naturally, each station stands as the focal point of each mini-neighborhood. To make lives easier, developers attached massive shopping and dining complexes to the stations, accommodating delis selling ready-to-eat sides to supplement the dining table, flower shops offering last-minute gifts, and casual eateries serving fail-proof dining options. While these establishments are supremely convenient, they are sometimes “too safe” and sterile.
Garden House Shinjuku, which is located inside the NEWoMan station building, offers a more refined dining experience relative to its peers. It blends seamlessly among the adjoining luxury stores with its meticulously designed interior and trendy menu items. While Garden House is not a bar, it does list several domestic craft beers, including a selection of collaborative beers brewed by Kamakura Brewery.
Garden House is on the 4th floor of the NEWoMan building, which opened in 2016 and can be directly accessed from either the South, Miraina Tower, or Koshu Kaido Exits. NEWoMan is decidedly upscale and international compared to say Atre or Lumine — trend-setting establishments like Aesops, Blue Bottle Coffee, and Maison Kitsune occupy spaces in the complex.
Garden House Shinjuku takes some cues from its parent location in Kamakura. Both locations feature plenty of vegetation and wood-paneling, although the Shinjuku location is certainly more “on-trend” with pastel colors, geometry shapes, and sans serif fonts abound. The dining room is generously spaced, even with a terrace, open-window kitchen, and bar counter occupying sections of the room.
Drink & Food Menu
The menu, and especially the drink list, is a pleasant surprise. Drinks include a rotating selection of domestic craft beers, a fixed collection of beers brewed in collaboration with Kamakura Brewery, a curated selection of bio wines, and a list of original cocktails.
Garden House puts a strong emphasis on its food, as is apparent from the gaping window that overlooks the centrally-located kitchen. During our visit, we watched a senior cook diligently teach a junior cook how to butcher a hulking slab of beef. The food menu is largely American: think grilled meats, pizzas, salads, and pancakes using somewhat healthy and locally-sourced ingredients.
A pint of beer runs a tad over 1,000 yen and most dishes are priced under 2,000 yen. Many dishes on the menu can be shared between a group. Garden House has a happy hour that runs from 5-7 PM on weekdays.
The crowd is fairly eclectic, which isn’t surprising given the crowds that pass through Shinjuku Station. A mom group rubbed elbows with a pair of tourists and ladies dressed in business suits.
Other Notable Spots in the Area
Start your day with an educational experience at...
Shinjuku has a plethora of entertainment options from shopping to dining. Start your day with an educational experience at the NTT InterCommunication Center (ICC). ICC hosts various experiential exhibits that cannot be found elsewhere. It’s a bit far from JR Shinjuku Station, but you’ll be rewarded with a unique experience that’s entirely free!
And after you've nourished your brain, satisfy your shopping appetite at...
Department Stores in Shinjuku
Shopping is a defining character of Shinjuku. If Harajuku/Omotesando/Minami Aoyama is the go-to for boutiques, Shinjuku is the capital of department stores. You can spend an entire day simply window shopping at department stores like Isetan, Tokyu Hands, BEAMS, Yodobashi Camera, etc.
Shinjuku Station (multiple train lines). The South, Miraina Tower, and Koshu Kaido exits from JR directly link to NEWoMan.
4-1-6 Shinjuku, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo
11:00 Open; 22:00 Last Order
Garden House Shinjuku restaurant