Tokyo Food Page
Bois Cereste/
Akasaka: Belgian
rest/beer bar
₯3588-6292
€Data
Starting out as a
Belgian beer spe-
cialty bar in 1988,
Bois Cereste pre-
ceded the interest
in craft beer that
began around 1995.
By then, Bois Ce-
reste (owner Masaha-
ru Yamada insists on
the "r" spelling)
had expanded into
the adjoining space,
where a Belgian
restaurant was
created under the
sure hand of Swiss-
trained chef Kazuhi-
to Tsuchiya.

Yamada himself was
no stranger to Eu-
rope, having worked
in Brussels for four
years as a jazz
pianist. He returned
to Japan with a
strong interest in
Belgian ales which
are considered by
craft beer enthu-
siasts to be the
world's best. It is
no exaggeration to
say that more styles
of beer are brewed
in that Kyushu-sized
country than in the
rest of the world
combined, and Bois
Cereste boasts Ja-
pan's largest as-
sortment of Belgian
beers at 140 kinds
and counting. So
unlike the mass-
produced, fizzy
yellow beer that
most people are
familiar with, Bel-
gian beers should be
savored slowly,
rewarding the drink-
er with remarkably
complex flavors and
textures. After the
first sip, many
newcomers invariably
ask, "Is this beer?"


Just as tasty and
surprising is the
cuisine of Belgium,
and Bois Cereste
serves it up nicely,
albeit in portions
more appropriate to
Tokyo. Waterzooi is
a creamy stew of
chicken on the bone,
carrots, potatoes,
and mushrooms. The
mussels steamed in
Lambic-style beer
are light, yet rich-
ly flavored with the
beer's tart yeasty
flavors and a pleas-
ant touch of bitter-
ness from aged hops.
Endive salad is
based around Bel-
gium's most famous
vegetable (which is
specially imported
for this dish),
while the warm,
crispy hand-made
Gauffre (savory
waffle) with your
choice of salmon or
proscuitto is an
unpretentious appe-
tizer served with
very thin slices of
daikon.

Whatever you do,
don't forget the
frites. So-called
"French Fries" were
actually invented in
Belgium, and the
traditional method
of cooking calls for
frying the potatoes
at a lower tempera-
ture for a few mo-
ments, then again at
a higher temperature
to achieve their
ultimate crispiness.
The Belgians eat
them with mayon-
naise, and at Bois
Cereste you should
too.

Have Yamada-san be
your beer sommelier,
and ask him for
recommendations to
go with your food.
While some Belgian
beers are only about
5% alcohol, the same
as conventional
mass-produced beer,
be warned that most
are stronger averag-
ing between 7% and
9% with a few push-
ing 12%. Sip slowly,
please. A few of my
favorites are the
fragrant, refreshing
Hoegaarden White
served on tap, the
rich Westmalle Tri-
pel, the tangy and
herbal Leffe Ra-
dieuse, and the
heady Bush 12% which
unfolds on the pal-
ate like a fine
brandy or sherry.

Please note that
there is an extra
500-yen charge for
seating in the bar,
where you will be
better able to enjoy
Yamada-san's piano
playing later in the
evening.
₯Photo
₯Google Map
₯Map for AU phones
₯Map for DoCoMo
₯Nearest restau-
rants

₯Nearest cafes/
bars


Minato-ku, Akasaka
2-13-21.  Open 6-
10pm (LO). Closed
Sundays.
 Tokyo Food top