When you mention Tsuyama nightlife to most of the people who live here, they say it barely exists, but I have discovered some interesting spaces in my nocturnal wanderings and have met many interesting people. The night in Tsuyama is sprinkled with a few interesting restaurants and bars and places to see.
One of the most unique establishments I have been to is Red, Hot and Blue in downtown Tsuyama. The atmosphere is a Southern Rockabilly bar with great songs playing on vinyl records, rather than CD’s. There are many items from the U.S. and they are mostly all antiques. The proprietor plays an old guitar with a Tsuyama baker playing stand up bass. The music is amazing and they usually perform nightly at 11. They serve curry rice for ¥750 and a Guinness in a bottle costs ¥650. Red, Hot and Blue is only open on Friday and Saturday nights.
Next is Paradiso. The employees at this bistro are very, very friendly and also a lot of fun. The décor is entirely Western, with a neo-European feeling to it. In fact, it is quite minimalist, but beautiful. The menu consists of many Italian dishes and antipastos. Playing over the din of conversation is usually great jazz, which adds to the minimalist atmosphere and also provides great conversation about the music. Paradiso’s mixed pizza costs ¥1200 and a draft beer is ¥650. They are open Monday-Saturday nights.
Finally, there is Jabikan, a wonderful coffee house and bar. The décor is also a subtle European style and the wait staff are always friendly. Their coffee is excellent and there is a pool table upstairs to help pass the time.
Tsuyama is a mysterious, yet small city, especially for a foreigner. There is so much to discover here and it almost seems as if one has to experiment with where they go. Noticeably, about Japanese culture is the absence of the dirty bar/restaurant. In New York a dirty bar or restaurant is a dime a dozen. But here, the establishments are clean and the servers friendly. It is refreshing to experience the differences.