Easy. They open at 5. It's popular. I mean, get-there-before-they-open popular. Who has time to do that? Who doesn't work on weekdays?
By the way, dude, it looks really natural.
is an atmosphere place, no question about it. There are eating places, and there are drinking places, and there are atmosphering places. This is one of those places. If you're one of the lucky entrants - and you'd better be in the top 15, because the next 5 sit facing the wall, and after that no one gets in - you get to sit around the big u-shaped counter feeling like you belong there, chatting with the other regulars who pretend that it's no big thing to wait in line for beer at 5 PM.
Yes, insert that joke here.
And I'll tell you this for free too, the food's pretty good for a cheap place (2 beers, bottle of sake there, all this food, Y5k. Christ, I paid that to open a bottle of wine one time.) The nuta is supposedly famous, so I'm glad I ordered it - onion and trash seafood with vinegar miso sauce, delicious. Spinach with black sesame, delicious. Hobo sashimi, a good version; hobo is a soft-but-chewy fish that you might not like, sort of like ankou. Katsuo, good. Those little fish, I can't remember what they were called...urume, I think. They were like twigs, hard as hell to bite through the spines, but the heads were nice. I smoked mine. Skate fin. Grilled golden-eye. Yum.
Hell, I'm glad we went here! I'd almost go back, on a day when I wasn't working. Unfortunately there are other atmospheric early-openers beckoning, so the triumphal return to Kishidaya, with trumpets, will have to wait.
Not forever, I hope.