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Columns

The Local Brew

By Bryan Harrell

Devil Craft: Kanda and Hamamatsucho, Tokyo

2015
ISSUE
57
 
This one was a squeaker. We have been waiting for years for the new Devil Craft Brewing to come on line, and after a few sputtering starts, the guys at Devil Craft finally received their license to brew beer in September.
 
Homebrewers John Chambers and Jason Koehler got the idea to start a brewpub back in 2008. They were later joined by fellow enthusiast Mike Grant and began looking for a location in earnest. It took a few years, but they found a small building south of Kanda Station and, after some development, they opened in July of 2011 as a brewpub serving Jason’s acclaimed deep-dish pizza.
 
 
This Chicago-inspi red creat ion uses a high wall of pizza crust to hold in extra vegetables, meats, sauce and cheese to the delight of those who partake. Between the tasty Chicago-style pizza and the extensive col lect ion of craft beers served on tap, Devil Craf t quickly became a hot spot . Rumors have it that in their second month of operation Devil Craft Kanda was in the black.
 
 
The onsite brewery was planned for the upper floors of the Kanda building but, after extensive surveying, it was revealed that the structure wasn’t strong enough to support the weight of huge fermenting and storage tanks. This sent John, Jason and Mike back out on the streets to look for a new site. Eventually, a great place was found across central Tokyo in Hamamatsucho.
 
Once Devil Craft Hamamatsucho gained steam, it became evident the area set aside for brewing operations would be necessary, and far more profitable, to use as extra table space for customers. This sparked yet another search for a brewery location. Finally, a good industrial space was found in a small factory neighborhood in Shinagawa Ward.
 
Since receiving their license in September, they have brewed four batches of beer to date, with more to come. However, there is no word on varieties and, unfortunately, no initial tastes for this writer. From personal experience, though, I can assure you to expect some captivatingly great brews wherever you choose to enjoy your Devil Craft.
 
 
Devil Craft Kanda
4-2-3 Nihonbashi Muromachi, Chuo-ku, Tokyo 103-0022
Phone: (03) 6265-1779
Open Weekdays 5-11 p.m., Saturdays 3-11 p.m., Sundays and Holidays 3-10 p.m.
Web: www.devilcraft.jp
 
Devil Craft Hamamatsucho
2-13-12 Hamamatsucho, Minato-ku, Tokyo 105-0013
Phone: (03) 6435-8428
Weekdays 5-11 p.m., Saturdays 11:30 a.m. to 11 p.m., Sundays 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m., National Holidays 3-10 p.m.

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