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Name of Shop: Cigar Club
Date Visited: March 14, 2009 (2 times previously)
Street Address: 2-3-9 Azabudai Minato-Ku
Phone Number: 03-3583-7130
Hours of Operation: Mon-Fri 11:00a.m.?9:00p.m.
To get to this shop you must get off of the subway at Roppongi Station. Now this is in the center of Tokyo, however there are only 2 train lines going through here which is the Hibiya Line and the Oedo Line. If you are not on one of these lines you will have to transfer at a different station. In Tokyo there are well over a dozen train lines.
Also, this is a famous area for foreigners to go to clubs and bars. If you are white, black, latino, etc (anything but Japanese looking) do not be surprised to be followed by Nigerian and Iranian club owners. They will follow you down the street asking you questions like “Come on my man, come see the titty, come see the titty” or “I know what you want boy, I know what you want, half price for you”. Just tell them to F-off or ignore them. Why are they not deported?? God knows.
Fortunately the shop is about a 10 minute walk from this noisy area and is located adjacent to the Russian Embassy.
Every time I walk in I am greeted with the regular “Irashaimase—-” (Welcome). Usually it is the owner’s wife (I think)working there. I am not sure of her name but she is quite friendly (and pretty). You would not think she knows jack squat about cigars, but this little Japanese lady smokes ’em…don’t be fooled! Her favorite is the Juan Lopez petit corona, and she is the one who turned me on the these. All of her other recommendations have been excellent as well.
I am not sure of her English skills, but if you have someone to translate, or just use hand signals or whatever, I am sure you will get a warm welcome.
Stock: Above Average
Stock is probably the best in all of Japan. Decent sized walk-in humidor. They have all of the major Cuban brands in addition to some of the lesser known ones, and some non-Cubans such as Davidoff, and I believe Arturo Fuente. On their home page however, not all of the brands are listed. The condition of the cigars is superb. Their humidor seems to be regulated perfectly and everything I have smoked from there has been A-okay.
Pricing is a different story. In this country, the government regulates the price of tobacco. No ifs, ands, or buts. And it is heavily monitored. Therefore wherever you go, the price of cigars will be the same. And it is INSANE.
The going rate for a few cigars with the exchange rate as of 3/16….
- Cohiba Siglo VI 3800 JPY $38.75
- Montecristo No. 2 2,200 JPY $22.43
- Bolivar Gold Medal 2,500 JPY $25.49
- Juan Lopez Petit Corona 1,100 JPY $11.21
- Romeo y Julieta Churchills 2,700 JPY $27.53
On the 2nd floor of this store is a cigar bar. It was recently renovated and I was blown away at the amount of time they put into it. Comfotable chairs, table top lighters and ashtrays at each table, and a very well stocked bar!
But you know I would rather go grab a 6 pack of beer from the convenience store for about 800 JPY and smoke at home because this place is a rip off. Alcoholic beverages start at 1,000 JPY ($10.45) and soft drinks start at 600 JPY ($6.39).
Overall Opinion: Average
Overall, this place is worth a visit. If you find yourself in Japan either on vacation, business, or whatever…try to make a trip there.
The staff is friendly, the have a good selection, comfortable lounge. The price is what drags it all down…but I don’t hold them accountable because the government fixes the price and profit margine for tobacco products. Though your wallet may regret it, I don’t think you will because smoking a cigar in Tokyo is a lot of fun!