This is the best bar you will find in Utsunomiya–given you have a whimsical personality. Personally, given the option, I would be more than happy to co-own Buccaneer. Just about 5 minutes from Tobu-Utsunomiya Station, and right down the street from the Tochigi Prefectural Office, this pub is pirate-themed, and not just for Halloween, but all year round. The music is one of my favorite medleys I’ve ever heard in a drinking establishment–a mix of (naturally) Pirates of the Caribbean orchestra, music you’d expect in a movie scene of Captain Hook’s cabin, and even an Irish fiddle cover of Darth Vader’s theme music, and the like. “Undeniably random” is really the only way I can think of to describe it, but it’s all strangely fitting to the atmosphere. The bar master dresses impeccably like Captain Jack Sparrow from the Pirates of the Caribbean, and he’s a very friendly, helpful chap, willing to go through the menu of rum type after rum type (dark, white, American, Jamaican, Japanese, special grade, in gun-shaped bottles, everything) with you if you need help.
I’ve been here twice before: the first time hanging out with a friend visiting from the US, and the second round with a big group of foreign friends dressed up for a Halloween get-together. (To my pleasant surprise, the pirate bar master recognized me, even in my crazy makeup, the second time–life goals accomplished.)
While the first time I just got a simple drink with my friend (who YOLO’d and got a taste of the Ron Mocambo gun-bottle rum), the second time in the group we took advantage of the all-you-can-drink system (which was having a Halloween special if you wore a costume)–nearly all the rums and other drinks were fair game (even the 75.5% alcohol one), except for several special-grade items. The all-you-can-drink would normally be about ￥2000 for about 2 hours, so even if you had to pay for it, it’s still incredibly worth it. We also tasted a lot of their food menu (which comes rolled up on a treasure map-esque scroll), including calamari, fried river shrimp (served in little treasure chests), ajillo, raclette cheese, and ice cream, which were very good, especially for pub food, which I’m usually not particularly a fan of in Japan.
Oh, by the way, Buccaneers even began a bar-wide dating service, where you can register your information, and if another registered pirate patron catches your fancy, the bar master can set you two up (like real-life pirate Tinder). Unfortunately, when I asked him, he said, however, that it’s not a particularly thriving service.
Doesn’t matter. This bar is awesome.