Back in the Edo period (1600-1900), Sakaya (liquor shop) began serving alcohol and providing a place to stay and drinking. (There is another supposition that soba ya, buckwheat noodle shop, began serving alcohol with their food including otsumami.) During this period, the number of single men is a lot higher than women, izakaya became a popular place and spread into the society easily as a casual dining space to share not only drink and food, but also their life stories. Compare to pub or bar, the food is more substantial and accompany to drinks.
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