5 best places to party, Niseko-style

By 23rd February 2014 June 28th, 2014 Eat & Drink, Travel Tips

One of the most common questions I get asked by Niseko visitors is, ‘Where should we go for a couple of drinks tonight?’. It’s a fair question – if you’re on holiday enjoying the best snow of your life, chances are good that you’re going to feel like partying!

I have a few favourites around Hirafu town, so whether it’s for that first lip-smacking beer after a long day of shredding, or for a fruity cocktail on a Friday night, read on for an insider’s suggestions on the best Hirafu watering holes.

1. Tamashii
Tamashii was renovated last year and now offers a bigger pool table, additional dartboards, and an extended bar courtesy of fallen comrade Paddy McGinty’s. This is my favourite place to come for a few cheeky après beers and to watch the footy on the big screen. It’s also the perfect start to a big night, and I’d like to put in a special mention for the tasty green shots that are bartender Keshia’s secret recipe! It’s only open till midnight, so get in early or you’ll turn into a pumpkin.

Tamashii Bar Niseko

Here are some Tamashii staff hard at work – hit up the one in the middle for a delicious mystery shot!

2. The Barn
While The Barn is primarily a restaurant and a damn fine one at that, the bar lounge upstairs is well worth a visit if you feel like sipping a cocktail rather than quaffing a beer. The front door girl might be a bit snooty about letting you in without a reservation, but once you’re upstairs you’ll find the bartenders make the best cocktails in town. I am a particular fan of their Strawberry Daquiri, and let me tell you I have tried a few of those in my time! All in all, a great place to go for something a little special.

The Barn Niseko

Head to The Barn for some fancy sipping on Hirafu’s best cocktails!

3. Bigfoot
This multi level bar has been the scene of many a late night out, and their punch bowls, cocktails, and red cup specials make for a festive drinking experience. Head in early to enjoy one of their famously huge burgers, and make sure you try the truffle mayonnaise! The pool table and wooden interior makes it a good place to segue from après into big night out, but be careful not to stumble down the spiral staircase.

Bigfoot Niseko

The calm before the storm… Bigfoot’s quaint interior awaits its late night guests

4. Barunba
Barunba is a hole-in-the-wall bar that serves absolutely diabolical cocktails. I have more than a few friends who have had to call it a night after trying the Jet Li, the Bruce Lee, or the Bruce Willis! The low ceilings and leafy décor create a somewhat surreal atmoshpere, especially when combined with the clouds of cigarette smoke. For a truly unique experience, stop off here on your tour of the town for at least one!

Bar Barunba Hirafu

Don’t be fooled by his innocent face, he is ready to mix up a cocktail that will knock your socks off!

5. Edge Bar
Hirafu’s only dedicated nightclub, Edge is a new addition this year and has proved a stroke of entrepreneurial genius. Open late, hosted underground, and offering a variety of DJs and a constant stream of ad hoc drink specials, it is the inevitable destination for all those who want to extend their Niseko party as much as possible.

Edge Bar Niseko

It gets a little bit like this…

Well I am sure you’re all thinking I’m a drunk by now, so I am going to sign off. Just to dig myself further into a pit of indignity, I’d like to add that all the establishments above have reasonably priced drinks, although the cocktails at The Barn are understandably a little more expensive.

Maybe I’ll see you out at one of the quality establishments above at some point tonight – it is Sunday Funday after all!


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