A neighborhood jazz bar in Tokyo’s bustling Ikebukuro district, P’s Bar may be very small but that results in a cozy, comfortable family-feeling setting. Upon entering the bar you may be greeted and given a seat along the bar or right up in the front table area next to where the musicians perform. The stage area features an upright piano, and that’s about it. Due to the small space, the musicians are usually playing as duos (piano & horn, piano & vocals, guitar & vocals) but occasionally there is a special event with a bassist and sometimes even a drummer squeezed into the corner. Also featured here are occasional afternoon jam sessions and vocal workshops.

The humorously-written menu features simple meals such as a variety of tiny cheese pizzas (hamburger, kimchee, bean paste, or the special mochi sweet cheese pizza), and the yakisoba and sausage cabbage dishes are good too.

At P’s Bar, the first set typically starts or 7:20 pm, or earlier on holidays and Sundays. The place is tiny, and once ten or so customers show up it may start to feel crowded, but there are also times when 25 or more customers can pack the place. At that point, the folding chairs and plastic stools come out and people just find a way to squeeze in and make room.

Because this bar is so tiny with a very at-home feeling, it’s an excellent budget choice where the admission and drinks are a bit less than average. It feels like a neighborhood hangout where, if you are open to it, you can quickly bond with the other people there.

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Aug 11, 2022