Tokyo's terminal of good luck, great blessings and even greater beer.
Ebisu is one of the busiest locations along the Yamanote Line, providing passengers with direct access to most of the major tourist attractions and landmarks in central Tokyo. In spite of this, it remains a relatively calm and relaxing place with less hustle and bustle in the area than you might expect.
Since Ebisu owes its name in part to the Japanese Yebisu Beer Brewery, you should head first to Yebisu Garden Place – accessible via the Ebisu Skywalk (a fast-moving covered walkway) from JR Ebisu Station East Exit. Here on the former brewery site, you’ll find shopping, museums (including the excellent Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography) and outdoor eating in a large, multi-level plaza. Head down to the basement floor for the Museum of Yebisu Beer and its attached Beer Hall, which serves up a reasonably priced array of Yebisu beers on tap in a grand, high-ceilinged setting.
The name of the area also references the Japanese deity Ebisu (one of the Seven Japanese Gods of Fortune who offers blessings in industry and business). Since it first opened in 1901 as a freight terminal for the beer factory, Ebisu and its surrounding areas have evolved into a high-class business district with many corporate headquarter offices for international firms.
As a result, Ebisu is host to a high concentration of izakaya, ramen shops, tachinomi (“stand and drink”) bars, restaurants, cafés. Head in any direction from the station’s West Exit and you’re bound to find a friendly spot to eat, drink and be merry after work.
The Atre Ebisu Shopping Center, located right inside of the station, is a real treat for people who want to do some quick brand name goods or international foods shopping without having to leave the station. Don’t worry – they sell beer (of the craft variety) here too.