Tokyo Stroll: The Café That You Want to Visit to See Someone #8 – ‘Ginza West’

05.October.2018 | FEATURES / FOOD / SPOT

Ginza is a district in the heart of Tokyo famed for its extravagant streets lined with upmarket shops, luscious restaurants and fantastic entertainment. But it’s not only worthy of note for its flamboyance – it’s also rooted in rich culture and history.

 

Today, I visited Ginza West, a café that has been continuously loved in Ginza ever since it opened in 1947.

Before entering I saw lots of delicious confections lined up on display. You can order takeout too. Your mind will wander off as you ponder on which to take away for snack time.

The entire café is clean and tidy throughout and you can feel the decor has grace. It’s different from other cafés in that it has a dignified atmosphere to it. It has an air of tension to it, the kind that makes you straighten up your back. It’s a place that’s nice if someone wants to enjoy a luxurious experience once in a while.

I ordered cake and tea set! The tea cost ¥1,048. A cake set is the price of the drink plus ¥324.

You can actually have them bring you samples of cakes being served on that day. There’s so many cake varieties it’s hard to choose.

The most popular is this one – the Mosaic Cake!

Its appearance is cute. I ended up wanting to take a lot of photos.

The Mosaic Cake is made of cocoa sponge and butter sponge which is arranged to look like a mosaic piece. You can really taste the different flavours of each sponge. It’s only moderately sweet so it’s not too heavy. I wolfed it down!

And then, and then!

I got the white cream soda which I’d been wanting to try. It cost ¥1,188.

 

When you think of cream soda it’s generally green coloured melon soda with a dollop of vanilla ice cream on top. But this one uses no colouring. The soda is clear and also served with vanilla ice cream. Try drinking it yourself after adding a syrup of your choice.

It looks like a very elegant beverage.

In terms of taste, if you eat the vanilla ice cream after drinking some of the soda (which is subtly sweet) it makes for an exquisite balance. It’s a flavour I’ve never had before – it’s a novel sensation.

Delicious.

The chairs in the café have something about them too! They feel extremely comfortable, I felt exhausted. The staff kindly told me the secret behind them.

 

The back legs of the chairs are a little wider than the ones at the front allowing you to lean back much easier and making it feel much more comfortable. The chair legs are also cut to a certain length to allow easier sitting.

So that’s why. That’s why I felt so relaxed simply sitting on them. I felt I could be sat there no matter the hour.

 

t’s a kind of consideration you’d only find at a café. Hearing about those chairs made me think that cafes really are such wonderful places. The more you learn about them, the more you come to love their charms.

 

I wonder where I’ll visit next? Look forward to it!

TALENT PROFILE

Ema Tanioku

“Emaeri” is the nickname for models Ema and Eri Tanioku, who are Aomoji fashion model twins. Ema and Eri Tanioku specialise in twin fashion coordination. Over the years their fanbase has increased due to their cute looks. Ema Tanioku spreads Harajuku culture within Japan as well as overseas and works as a Harajuku Tourism Ambassador. Starting off as a model, Ema has broadened her talent range from fashion magazines to TV, and from playing the lead role in dramas to movies.

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  • Tokyo Stroll: The Café That You Want to Visit to See Someone #7 – Garden Café & Bar ‘Urara’ in Daikanyama

    15.August.2018 | FEATURES / FOOD / SPOT

    The place I am showcasing today is ‘Urara,’ a garden café and bar located in Daikanyama. Their shaved ice is super popular in summer. It’s somewhere I love and often go to in my private time.

    It’s an old Japanese-style house so it has a much different atmosphere to that of stylish Daikanyama. The outside of it has a warm and welcoming feel to it that will have you wanting to see what kind of place it is.

    Upon entering through the shop sign curtain, you arrive in the courtyard which is surrounded by trees. You can hear the sounds of birds from somewhere, and when the wind blows you also hear the rustling of tree leaves. You completely forget you’re in Tokyo as you feel like you’ve come to a grandma’s house in the countryside. It’s very relaxing.

    Hm? What’s this odd looking thing?

    These unique ornaments were scattered all around the courtyard ready to greet us!

    This sign makes for a great photo spot. It says ‘Urara’ just like the name of the café. Its nostalgic design is so cute!

    When you really look, it says tissue paper on it! There’s lots to be discovered on the posters and signs that make up the interior, it’s a lot of fun!

    I ordered the Uji adzuki bean shaved ice topped with condensed milk! It cost ¥600 for the shaved ice and ¥100 for the topping. The matcha used is from Uji in Kyoto. Such a big portion of shaved ice is enough to cool you down by just looking at it.

    Let’s eat!

    Where have I tasted this before…

     

    The matcha seeped all the way to the middle of the shaved ice. The refreshing sweetness was so tasty. The adzuki beans are from Tokachi in Hokkaido. They were a perfect combination with the condensed milk. The ice used is natural ice from Nikko. It’s fluffy, tastes great, and doesn’t give you brain freeze!

     

    Natural ice is different from regular ice. It’s frozen slowly so the crystals have high density, and it takes longer for it to melt. The cool part was how it didn’t crumple instantly when I poured the syrup on it!

    This is blueberry syrup (¥600). The blueberries used are from Nagano. They make it from jam in the café. Isn’t the colour just beautiful?

    It has that sour flavour that blueberries have and a refreshing, lip-smacking sweetness.

    I normally don’t drink alcohol, but since Urara is a café and a bar I will show you a mojito (¥600). The mint is so refreshing!

    On a hot summer’s day it seems like there are people who order both shaved ice and beer together. They’re seasonal items so will satisfy and cool you down.

    I also got to meet Tama-chan, the cat who comes to play at Urara. One time when I came before Tama was out walking so I didn’t get to meet him.

    Lastly, I snapped a photo with Arai who’s in charge of promoting Urara!

    We’re roughly the same height and have a similar interest in clothes so I grew an affinity with her.

    Coffee shops and cafés in old style Japanese houses tell you something about the people associated with them.

    Urara feels natural thanks to SELIN & Co., an apparel maker who make things that feel one with nature. The staff at Urara all love living things, so the big hearted atmosphere there was really wonderful.

    If I was to set up a shop I wonder what it would be like…

    I think I’d want to put out something warm like Urara.

     

    ■Information

    Urara

    Address: 20-10 Sarugakucho, Shibuya, Tokyo

    Opening Hours: Weekdays 11:30am-7:00pm / Weekends & Holidays 11:30am-7:30pm

    *Closed during rainy weather.

    Access: 4-minutes on foot from Daikanyama Station via the Tokyu Tokoyo Line

    Website: http://www.hrm.co.jp/news/2016/04/garden-cafe-bar-urara

     

    Photographer:Haruka Yamamoto

    Editor:Ai Watanabe

    Design:Yuko Abe(ASOBISYSTEM)

    Translater:Joshua Kitosi-Isanga

    TALENT PROFILE

    Ema Tanioku

    “Emaeri” is the nickname for models Ema and Eri Tanioku, who are Aomoji fashion model twins. Ema and Eri Tanioku specialise in twin fashion coordination. Over the years their fanbase has increased due to their cute looks. Ema Tanioku spreads Harajuku culture within Japan as well as overseas and works as a Harajuku Tourism Ambassador. Starting off as a model, Ema has broadened her talent range from fashion magazines to TV, and from playing the lead role in dramas to movies.

  • Tokyo Stroll: The Café That You Want to Visit to See Someone #6 – ‘Angelus’ in Asakusa Loved by Osamu Tezuka

    13.June.2018 | FEATURES / FOOD / SPOT

    In this sixth instalment to her café seriesEma Tanioku stopped by Angeles, a café in Asakusa with a history spanning over 70 years.

    Angeles is known for its history of famous frequenters including legendary manga artist Osamu Tezuka (Astro Boy). This wonderful location is always bustling with customers and is known to be full even during holidays.

    When people think of Asakusa, they imagine Sensoji Temple and the district’s old-fashioned architecture. However, Angeles breaks that mould and instead takes on the form of a European-style place of worship. It’s different from all the rest and looks warm and welcoming from the outside.

    Even if you have no plans to go into the café, the desserts on display look so invitingly delicious you’ll find yourself stopping in your tracks.

     

    They look so tasty…

     

    Time to go inside!

    You’ll be spoilt for choice because they all look so good.

    The café has three floors. It’s like an atrium where you can look down below from the top floor.

     

    People who want to kick their feet up and read in the café or relax and space out can head to the second floor which has a hiding-place-like area. There’s a different atmosphere wherever you decide to sit, so it can be fun finding which part fits for you!

    ‘Angeles’ refers to a devotion in memory of the Annunciation in Christianity signalled by the ringing of church bells. Looking around at the decor you’ll see things like crosses and doves as well as signs of peace dotted about.

    Ema ordered the Almond Purin (¥930).

     

    In the middle of the bowl is a melon that looks as if it’s been sliced. It’s also plated with various fresh fruits like banana strawberry as well as tinned pineapple and peaches and finished with a side of fresh cream. All of that hides vanilla ice cream underneath. And of course the highlight of the dessert, the purin, also tucked away!

    First thing’s first: munching down the strawberry! The fresh cream is a perfect complement to the fruits. Combine and gobble it all up.

     

    And finally, the star of the plate. The purin! It has quite a sweet flavour and is supple so it’s very tasty.

    The café’s number one recommendation on the dessert menu is the above.

     

    The flavour of the Angelus (¥330) dessert hasn’t changed for over 50 years. It comes in either black or white. The black Angeles is made with coffee flavoured butter cream and coated with sweet chocolate. The white Angeles is made with ordinary butter cream and coated in white chocolate.

     

    Neither are overly sweet and they’re at an easy-to-eat size. They were exquisite!

    Angelus‘ speciality is their Dutch Coffee (¥620). Dutch coffee is made by dripping ice water dripped over the coffee to extract the maximum flavour. It even looks refreshing, making it perfect for the summertime heat. If you’re a coffee enthusiast then you’ve got to try this.

     Ema was contemplating that although she’s sat there there in that moment, what kind of people were talking about what kinds of things 70 years ago? The thought simply excited her ♪

     

    “Though the generations will change, this place will continue remaining the same and probably continue to be loved by lots of people. As time flows so does the delicious taste of what they have to offer. More places like this will come to be one by one. I wonder what kind of cafe will I encounter next?♡”

     

    ■Information

    Angelus

    Address: 1-17-6 Asakusa, Taito, Tokyo

    Opening Hours: 11am-9pm (Last Orders 8:40pm)

    Closed: Mondays

    Access:

    3-minutes by foot from Exit 1 of Asakusa Station via the Tokyo Metro Ginza Line
    4-minutes by foot from Asakusa Staion via the Tobu Isesaki Line
    6-minutes by foot from Asakusa Staion via the Toei Asakusa Line
    5-minutes by foot from Asakusa Staion via the Tsukuba Express

    Website: http://www.asakusa-angelus.com

     

     

    Model&Writer: Ema Tanioku

    Profile:

    “Emaeri” is the nickname for models Ema and Eri Tanioku, who are Aomoji fashion model twins. Ema and Eri Tanioku specialise in twin fashion coordination. Over the years their fanbase has increased due to their cute looks. Ema Tanioku spreads Harajuku culture within Japan as well as overseas and works as a Harajuku Tourism Ambassador. Starting off as a model, Ema has broadened her talent range from fashion magazines to TV, and from playing the lead role in dramas to movies.

    Instagram: @ematanioku

     

    Photographer: Haruka Yamamoto

    Editor :Ai Watanabe

    Design: Yuko Abe(ASOBISYSTEM)

    Translator: Joshua Kitosi-Isanga

     

  • 【Tokyo Stroll】The cafe that you want to visit to see someone #5: “café Benisica” – The Birthplace of Pizza Toast

    21.February.2018 | FEATURES / FOOD / SPOT

    “A café that has continued to be loved for 60 years”

     

    In this entry to my café series, I visited the familiar Yurakucho, the center of modern Tokyo culture. This year, long-standing café Benisica turned 61-years-old. I stopped by to have my fill of their amazing pizza toast. The café is a 2-minute walk from Hibiya Station via Tokyo Metro lines, and 4-minutes on foot from Yurakucho Station via JR lines, making it an easy place to get to.

     

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    The café opened all those years ago in response to the large number of cinemas and theatres dotted around Yurakucho. They wanted to create place where people could relax on their way back from seeing a show.

     

    Upon arrival, you can still observe stylish older ladies strolling into the café. The scene hasn’t changed one bit which I found to be wonderful.

     

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    Café Benisica is famous for being the birthplace of original pizza toast. They even have a sign at the entrance telling you that! Eye-catching!!!

     

    Without further ado, let’s head on in♪

     

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    I take one step into the café, and… Huh? What’s this?!

     

    That’s right. At Benisica, you can enjoy vacuum brewed coffee. This was the first time I had seen a vacuum coffee maker up close, so I gazed at them with a keen interest.

     

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    Inside, I gazed at the café décor and objects scattered around of Hibiya, a town which changes with the times. You can feel the weight of the times instore – all the wonderful items look stylish simply by being placed in there! The café interior is a collection of warm colours. It’s a place where you can relax and feel comfortable.

     

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    This is Benisica’s famous pizza toast, costing ¥950 (tax included). They have plenty of set menus, and drink menus are ¥1,350. The story behind the pizza toast was how if you didn’t go to an Italian restaurant back then, you couldn’t eat pizza. So, they took pizza and turned it into something you can eat casually – toast. Since then, it has continued to be a much-loved menu item with customers for almost half a century.

     

     

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    After hearing the story, I took no time at all ordering my own pizza toast! To drink, I chose a strawberry shake. Just so you know, the shake doesn’t come in set orders, so be careful.

     

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    Thick servings of cheese and put onto chunky slices of toast. “The soul of the pizza toast is in the cheese!” is what you’ll be saying at its presence on the toast. Its generous serving makes this pizza toast suitable not just as a light meal, but even a whole lunch. As well as the standard ingredients like salami, onion and bell peppers, I was happy that there were mushrooms too.

     

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    The bread’s texture is fluffy! I was hungry, so I made short work of it. Thank you for the meal.

     

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    This is the owner of Benisica, Setsuko Murakami, who told me the story of the café. She’s a very wonderful person who loves her husband very much. Not only did she tell me about the café – I got to hear about her husband’s way of living and thoughts too. The words of people that have walked the road of life longer than me are deep and enlightening.

     

    I stored the owner’s story safely onto the shelves in my heart. The next time something happens, I’ll rely on those special words she graciously taught me and work hard.

     

    ■Information

    Café Benisica

    Address: 1-6-8 Yurakucho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo

    Opening Hours: 9:30-23:45 (Open from 9:00 on Weekends & Holidays)

    No Fixed Holidays.

    Access: 2-minutes on foot from Hibiya Station via the Hibiya Line, Chiyoda Line, and Toei Mita Line / 4-minutes on foot from Yurakucho Station via JR Lines

    Webpage:https://tabelog.com/tokyo/A1301/A130102/13002146/

     

    Model : Ema Tanioku

    DSC07474

    Profile: “Emaeri” is the nickname for models Ema and Eri Tanioku, who are Aomoji fashion model twins. Ema and Eri Tanioku specialise in twin fashion coordination. Over the years their fanbase has increased due to their cute looks. Ema Tanioku spreads Harajuku culture within Japan as well as overseas and works as a Harajuku Tourism Ambassador. Starting off as a model, Ema has broadened her talent range from fashion magazines to TV, and from playing the lead role in dramas to movies.

    Instagram:@ematanioku

     

    Photographer:Haruka Yamamoto

    Editor&Writer:Ryoichi Komaba

    Design:Yuko Abe (ASOBISYSTEM)

    Translation: Joshua Kitosi-Isanga

     

  • 【Tokyo Stroll】 The café that you want to visit to see someone #4 Cats working at Shinjuku-sanchome’s Café Arles

    21.December.2017 | FEATURES / FOOD

    “Good service, a jolly owner and cute cats – this café is sure to heal you!”

     

    I’m Ema Tanioku and today I’ll be introducing you to yet another café in Tokyo as the fourth edition of my series “The café that you want to visit to see someone”. Today I’ll be reporting about my visit to Café Arles which can be found at Shinjuku-sanchome. Ever since hearing that there were cats at this café, I’ve been set on going 〜♪♪

     

    The café is very easy to access. To get to there, you can take the Toei Shinjuku line to Shinjuku-sanchome. From here, you can get to the café within a five-minute walk. Walking around the Shinjuku Suehirote theatre, the café soon came into sight. Somehow, I could sense the presence of cats just from the atmosphere…

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    There it was! The entrance to the café was decorated with many ornaments of cats and dogs. I don’ know why but I was filled with excitement before even having entered.

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    As soon as I entered, I immediately spotted a cat.

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    I was then greeted by the cat’s master who had a sweeping grin across his face and was wearing a hat with a cat broach. I could really feel his love for cats ♪♪

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    I took a sweeping glance over the café – cats, cats and more cats – there were so many cat-themed goods everywhere! Apart from cats goods, the master also collects clown goods and displayed everything all huddled together to decorate the café.

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    Although this was my first time at Café Arles, I immediately felt right at home as a warm feeling grew within me. I asked the master what got him into the café business and I was surprised by his response. It all started when the master was working at a mahjong parlour, where a person they knew asked them to start up a café.

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    The master then thought about the numerous paintings he had collected and how he was in search of a place to display them. The idea of choosing his own music, menu and decorating a café interior to his own taste really struck a chord with him.

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    There are many paintings displayed in the café. Amongst these are some by modern artist Tomomi Kondo, who made the paintings “please your master” and “cool your thighs”, which feature the kaban neko (café cats) Ishimatsu and Jirocho, who are “working hard” by lazing around.

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    Café Arles is fun and draws in even more fun. The atmosphere is filled with the love and enjoyment of the customers. That’s why I immediately felt so at home as soon as I entered. You can easily spend a long time here.

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    I asked the master what he recommends from his menu. His response? “My recommendation is what you want to eat the most!” he said wisely. I felt like eating Napolitan spaghetti and so that is what I ordered! (Price: ¥720 including tax)

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    It came with banana and giant corn ❤ – this excellent service made me so happy!

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    The gentle flavour of this homemade dish was delicious and I could really taste the Showa-retro Napolitan flavour to it. The drink, soup and salad services available gives this meal a perfect score for portion size satisfaction!

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    The master allowed me to take his café cat Jirocho-kun out for a walk. This was the first time I’d ever walked a cat – a new, fresh experience!

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    Jirocho-kun is a very calm and obedient cat, so we had a lovely stroll together. Speaking of which, Jirocho-kun loves his owner so much that he runs to meet him whenever he hears his car pull up at the shop.

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    This year marks the 40th anniversary of the café. “I enjoyed every minute of it” explained the master happily. The master created a place where everyone can be happy and in return everyone supports him. Perhaps this cycle is the motivational force that has kept and will continue to push this café to live and thrive.

     

    I’m glad I came to this café today and met such a special person.

    I want to come here again and have another chat with the master!

     

     

     

    ■Information

    Cafe Arles

    Address:1st floor, 5-10-8, Shinjuku, Tokyo

    Opening h0urs: 11:30 〜 22:00

    Regular holidays days: Sundays, New Year’s period holiday period

    Access:398 metres from Shinjuku Sanchome station (reach via Toei-Shinjuku line/ Tokyo Metro Marunouchi line

    URL:https://tabelog.com/en/tokyo/A1304/A130401/13087540/

     

     

    Model & Writer: Ema Tanioku

    DSC05571

    Profile: “Emaeri” is the nickname for models Ema and Eri Tanioku, who are Aomoji fashion model twins. Ema and Eri Tanioku specialise in twin fashion coordination. Over the years their fanbase has increased due to their cute looks. Ema Tanioku spreads Harajuku culture within Japan as well as overseas and works as a Harajuku Tourism Ambassador. Starting off as a model, Ema has broadened her talent range from fashion magazines to TV, and from playing the lead role in dramas to movies.

    Instagram:@ematanioku

     

    Photographer:Haruka Yamamoto

    Editor:Ryoichi Komaba

    Design:Yuko Abe (ASOBISYSTEM)

    Translated by: Samantha Fernandes

     

  • 【Tokyo Stroll】The cafe you that you want to visit to see someone #3 “Galant” —a retro café in Ueno

    15.November.2017 | FEATURES / FOOD / SPOT

    “It’s a mysterious café vacuum sealed with an energy that feels like it’s the time of the Japanese economic miracle”

     

    We’re at the third installment of this series where we take a stroll to old-fashioned cafes filled with a sense of nostalgia.

    I, Ema Tanioka, will be introducing to you another retro café that I am in love with. Today, we go to “Galant” in Ueno, a town where the Showa mood still lingers.

     

    Galant has continued to be loved by many people since it opened its doors back in 1977. This year marks the 40th anniversary of the popular café. “Galant” sounds a little space-y, don’t you think? It’s a little different from the norm. When I enquired to the staff about the origin of the café’s name, they told me that it comes from the Mitsubishi Galant as the owner is a fan of cars. To think that a car’s name became the name of a café! But it has a ring to it and is easy to remember, so it might actually be a huge success.

     

    Anyway, without further ado, let’s make our way there!

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    Galant is on the 2nd floor of this building. As you head up the stairs, it no longer felt like I was in the real world. A completely different world opened before me. Because of the entrance’s chic brickwork, I was surprised by the dazzling lights floating inside.

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    And here!

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    Here too! There was so much sparkle.

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    The first thing to peak my interest was the uniform the staff were wearing. So cute… You don’t see that red & yellow combination much these days. It helped amplify that retro mood of the café even more.

     

    The male staff wore red & black! Black was the base colour and had that well defined, guy-like feel to it. Together with the checkered vests, it completed that retro look. It was wonderful. The café was also playing popular Showa era songs. I really felt like I had stepped back in time.

     

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    And then… and then! The menu arrived!

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    The most popular item on the menu is the chocolate parfait (¥900 tax incl.). It was absolutely stuffed with cream all the way to the middle. For people who love sweet things this is an irresistible delight. By the way, I must ask, what do you do when it comes to the cherry on top of the parfait? The truth is, I absolutely love parfaits, but I’m really not into the cherry – I usually leave it until the end. Even though it looks so cute on the parfait…

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    Another item is the cream soda (¥750 tax incl.). When going to a café, you just have to get a cream soda!! It’s because you don’t see them around much besides at cafes and family restaurants, so I’m the person that ends up ordering one unintentionally when if I see it on the menu.

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    There’s a nice fat serving of ice cream in there. It’s a drink you can enjoy that has the aesthetic of a dessert. The melon soda is crystal clear like a precious gem. The best part about cream soda is how the ice cream slowly melts into the drink. It’s pretty fun to watch!

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    Galant is the kind of café where the more you get to know it, the more you start to love it. Its fans have been supporting it for many years, and even when I become a grandma in the future, I reckon it’ll still be bustling all the same.

     

    ■Information

    Galant (ギャラン)

    Address: 6-14-4 Ueno, Taitō, Tokyo

    Open: 8:00-23:00

    Open all week.

    Access: 2-minutes’ walk from Ueno Station via the Tokyo Metro Ginza Line / 1-minutes’ walk from Exit 5b at Ueno Station via the Hibiya Line

    URL:https://tabelog.com/tokyo/A1311/A131101/13039759/

    Model&Writer:Ema Tanioku

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    Profile:Ema and Eri Tanioku are well-known Aomoji-kei twin models that go by their duo name “EmaEri.” Their twin-like fashion co-ordination and cute looks have earned them a fast growing fan base. They are officially appointed tourism ambassadors and work both in Japan and overseas to promote Harajuku culture. They work as fashion models in a wide range of areas and have appeared in fashion magazines as well as on TV, in dramas, movies and more.  Instagram:@ematanioku

     

    Photograph:Haruka Yamamoto

    Editor:Ryoichi Komaba

    Design:Yuko Abe(ASOBISYSTEM)

    Translation:Joshua Kitosi-Isanga

     

  • 【Tokyo Stroll】The cafe that you want to visit to see someone #2 “Nanatsumori”—An Attractive Cafe in Kōenji

    26.July.2017 | FEATURES / FOOD / SPOT

    “A coffee lounge where you can step back in time and spend it in luxury.”

     

    Showa, retro-style coffee shops that are comfortable and echo a sense of nostalgia. I, Ema Tanioka, love going to these kinds of cafés. I hope to make you want to visit a place like this, the kind of place where you want to meet with someone.

     

    For today’s stroll, I went to Kōenji, a conveniently accessible location from the city just one stop from Shinjuku on the Chūō Line. When you think of Kōenji, you think of its plentiful second hand clothes shops and shops selling miscellaneous goods, among others, all with their individual traits. It’s the kind of town where you’re sure to discover something new each time you visit.

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    This time around, I went to “Nanatsumori,” a café that has a retro look to it from the outside. It was built in Showa 53 (the year 1978). I heard that the building was originally used as a tea house.

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    At the front of the café is an old-fashioned shaved ice machine. I couldn’t help turning it.

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    Upon entering, you can see the interior of the café has weathered. It has an atmosphere reminiscent of the Showa era, like you’ve just stepped back in time. No matter where you take a photograph in the café it will look beautiful.

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    There were lots of mysterious ornaments inside; I couldn’t help but reach my hands out to touch everything♪

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    But, in the end, I didn’t know what any of the things I’m holding in the photos were. How on earth do you use this stuff…?!

     

    While pondering that, just simply gazing around the interior of the café filled me with a feeling of excitement.

    >>next page

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  • PEANUTS Cafes and DINERs Are Holding a Joe Cool Fair For a Limited Time Only

    15.January.2020 | FASHION / FOOD

    PEANUTS Cafes and PEANUTS DINERs in Nakameguro, Minami-machida, Yokohama and Kobe are holding a Joe Cool fair from January 15, 2020.

    PEANUTS Cafes and DINERs across Japan have held quite a few Snoopy-themed events based on a number of his disguises. In the past, the master of disguise has made an appearance in PEANUTS Cafes and DINERs as Astronaut Snoopy, Flying Ace Snoopy and Beagle Scout Snoopy. For the fourth and final theme of the series, Snoopy will be taking to the scene as his alter-ego Joe Cool. 

     

    Joe Cool is the guy that everyone yearns for. The cool dude who is always hidden behind his signature jet black sunglasses. Although he’s got the cool looks, he doesn’t seem to have a knack for attracting girls. 

     

    During the fair, there will be hot drinks decorated with illustrations of Joe Cool and a lineup of fair-limited merchandise.

    Joe Cool Black Caramel Au Lait
    Eat-In: ¥800 *Comes with an original drink coaster/ Take Away: ¥600 (Prices Before Tax)

    The jet black caramel café au lait is topped with creamy milk foam and a dusting of black cocoa in the silhouette of Joe Cool. Enjoy the changing appearance of your drink as you take a sip. Even the label on the take out cup is decorated with a Joe Cool fair logo that you won’t be able to resist taking a photo of.

     

    Sold At:

    PEANUTS Cafe Nakameguro: Eat-In/Take Away

    PEANUTS DINER Yokohama: Eat-In/Take Away

    PEANUTS DINER Kobe: Eat-In Only

    PEANUTS Cafe Kobe: Take Away Only

    *Not available at PEANUTS Cafe Snoopy Museum

    Original Joe Cool Eco Tote Bag: ¥1,600 (Before Tax)

    The popular Snoopy Eco Tote Bag has had a Joe Cool makeover. It has a simple design and is easy to use. The jet black colour makes it appropriate for anyone and it is large enough to fit an A4-size item inside. You can use it as your main bag or fold it up to store in your main bag so you’re always ready for that unplanned shopping trip. The merchandise lineup also includes original-design stickers, keyrings bearing a Joe Cool Snoopy design and a stainless steel mug. 

     

    All fair merchandise is available to purchase from the merchandise area of PEANUTS Cafes and PEANUTS DINERs or the online shop. 

     

    The special Joe Cool menu and merchandise is available for a limited time only – perfect for a special trip!

    © 2020 Peanuts Worldwide LLC

  • CHAYA 1899 TOKYO To Open in February Serving Specially Made Tea

    10.January.2020 | FOOD

    With a history of 120 years in managing a number of old hotels and restaurants, the Ryumeikan Group will open a new café that sells Japanese desserts, pastries, tea and coffee called CHAYA 1899 TOKYO. The new café is set to open on February 21, 2020 and will embrace the delicious flavours of matcha, hōjicha and Japanese black tea. 

    The café will open on floor 1 of the boutique hotel Hotel 1899 Tokyo. The café interior is wood-themed with touches of black for a casual fusion of tradition and modernity. With a space of 120 square metres, the relaxing environment is spacious enough to seat 38.

     

    The original restaurant opened for business in December 2018. Now, CHAYA 1899 TOKYO specialises in Japanese beverages and intends to live its days as the tea shop that customers can visit as they please for a break from everyday life.

     

    One of the most appealing aspects of the new restaurant has to be the menu. There are 10 different drinks available. Each drink is carefully made with high-quality tea leaves that were carefully selected from all over Japan. The tea varieties include matcha, hōjicha, Japanese black tea made from Japanese tea leaves. 

    Rich Matcha Latte: ¥600 (After Tax)

    Each cup of tea is carefully made, one by one, by the café’s Japanese tea specialist. The rich matcha tea is made using traditional tools such as a bamboo whisk. From this, soy milk or milk is added to make the rich matcha latte. From three to six grams, you can choose the strength of your tea by the gram to create a more personalised matcha latte. 

     Other drinks on the menu include the Hōjicha Latte and the brand new inventions the ‘Matcha Soda and ‘Japanese Black Tea Soda’, which will tempt you their exquisite aromas. 

     

    The café even has a counter especially for the tea making and pouring procedures. The water for each drink is boiled in a traditional kettle by the tea specialist, who carefully regulates the water temperature and controls the brewing time according to the tea leaf. 

    Matcha Pan:  ¥600 (After Tax)

    As expected, the café also sells delicious sweet treats full of matcha goodness to go with your tea. The fresh green Matcha Pan are full of matcha goodness. They are made from 100% Japanese wheat, Hokkaido butter and milk. The mixture is left to rise at a low temperature over a long period of time. Afterwards, matcha from Shizuoka is added to the mix and then baked into muffins. This original and rare bread was developed with Baba FLAT – a café which sells very popular pastries and coffee in Takadanobaba, Tokyo. 

    Craving more matcha? Enjoy both matcha and hōjicha at the same time in the form of a healthy snack: the Omatcha Brownie. The brownies are made from gluten-free rice flour and enjoy a moist texture and rich flavour.

    Uji matcha, a high-quality and rich matcha used in tea ceremonies, is also used to make rich matcha ice cream (Koicha Gelato) and matcha cakes called “Sakecha Cakes” which combine tea and Japanese sake or brandy with cakes. The varieties of cake include matcha and Japanese sake, hōjicha and Japanese sake and black tea and brandy.

     

    If you’re looking for a unique tea experience, look no further than CHAYA 1899 TOKYO.

     

  • Relaxing Café by Day, Neon-Lit Bar by Night: Enjoy a Drink at Jinbōchō CAMPUS in Tokyo

    05.January.2020 | FEATURES / FOOD

    Hello everyone, this is MOSHI MOSHI friend Banako.

     

    Today I’ll be introducing you to an interesting place in Jinbōchō, Tokyo that is a café by day and a café & bar at night.

     

    From 9:00 to 17:00 it’s known as COFFEE CAMPUS  and from 18:15 to 22:00 it runs as CAMPUS TOY cafe&bar. It first opened its doors approximately 48 years ago, solely operating as a café. Its current owner is an avid American toy and pop culture-lover who started running the café & bar seven years ago.

     

    To get here, it’s just a five-minute walk from exit A2 of Jinbōchō Station. The café is located in a quiet place just one turn off Odori Street.

     

    Check out the menu:

    The toast here is really good, so I ordered the Egg on Toast. (¥500)

    To my surprise, an exceptionally large and thick slice of toast arrived at my table. The egg was evenly cooked and spread on top. I curiously sunk my knife into the toast to reveal the inside.

    The egg dripped beautifully like melted cheese. It tasted wonderful with the freshly toasted slice of bread and was very filling. I was in a good mood after my very first bite.

    Once the clock strikes 18:15, the café completely transforms into CAMPUS TOY cafe&bar which has a completely different atmosphere. 

     

    One step into the newly-transformed café & bar and…

    The calm undertones of the café were replaced with a cute pop-themed atmosphere illuminated by colourful neon lights. Rather than preparing a drinks menu, owner matz takes orders directly from customers, creating drinks catered to each individual customer based on what flavours and colours they like. 

    Waiting to see what kind of drink is going to be brought to you is very exciting. Ordering drinks with friends and taking photos of the outcome is the best way to enjoy your time here. 

    There are also lots of good spots to take photos for your Instagram so don’t hold back! From time to time, there is a small market here where the owner sells small fantasy-themed items.

     

     Make sure to check out CAMPUSTOY cafe&bar on Instagram for their latest updates and information on opening hours. Whether you want to enjoy a pop-themed American atmosphere or are simply looking for a relaxing spot to chat, this café is for you. Matz the owner is very friendly and is full of interesting stories that you just got to hear.

  • Warm Food and Succulent Seasonal Strawberries Served at Ginza Six For Winter

    05.January.2020 | FOOD

    GINZA SIX—officially the biggest shopping complex in Tokyo’s high-end Ginza district—is home to a host of restaurants now serving some seriously luxurious and gourmet winter food.

     

    For the winter season only, the shopping centre’s cafes and restaurants have cooked up menus of food to warm both the heart and body. The extravagant line-up is made up of carefully-selected seasonal ingredients that’s sure to warm you to the core. Let’s take a select look at some of the things on offer.

    JASMINE Specially-Made Hotpot Plan – ¥7,800 (Before Tax) @ JASMINE Washinkansai

    This hot pot is made with a broth of chicken bones and collagen boiled in water and a broth of mala sauce. Both broths have a deep and nourishing taste and are filled with carefully-chosen ingredients as well as nine condiments for complex flavours. As well as that seen in the photo above, it is served as a set with an appetiser, fried gyoza, Chinese-style noodles, and almond tofu.

    Matsusaka Beef Sukiyaki Gozen Hotpot – ¥3,400 @ Sukiyaki Gyu-shabu Matsuju

    Warm yourself up with this hot pot which is made sukiyaki-style and contains high-quality Matsusaka beef picked out by Asahiya, a shop specialising in Matsusaka beef. The beef is soft, tender, and has a rich sweet taste and fragrance. It’s served with a red miso soup seasoned with Japanese pepper which complements the salty-sweetness of the sukiyaki.

    Homemade Sausage and Potato Raclette Cheese Melt – ¥2,400 (Before Tax) @ Bistro AUX AMIS

    Raclette cheese is a staple food in France during the winter. This delicious dish is served with juicy homemade sausages made from yoshidabuta pig from Saitama, bacon, potato, and warm veg, all covered in a hot melted cheese. It’s sure to warm you up and goes even better with a glass of wine.

     

    Once you’ve had a fill of lunch or dinner, you should go and check out the in-season strawberry takeout treats and desserts that are being sold on the booth floor where the latest in culinary trends gather.

    Strawberry Chocolate Sandwich – ¥300 (Before Tax) @ Patisserie Sembikiya Ginza Six

    Coated in white chocolate, this biscuit sandwich is made with a strawberry ganache that squeezes every last delicious drop out of the fresh strawberries. Combined with he raspberry sablé cookies and chocolate, it’s a strawberry match made in heaven.

    Real Strawberry Gummies – ¥1,050 for 3 @ Candy Art Museum by PAPABUBBLE

    These gummy candies are made as big as real large strawberries. They are coated in chocolate and made with lots of real strawberry juice, and when bitten into, taste fresh and juicy.

    Strawberry Matcha Daifuku – ¥400 Each @ Kurogi Chacha

    Kurogi Chacha’s Strawberry Matcha Daifuku are filled with a whole fresh strawberry and coated in a matcha-laced white bean paste and gyūhi, a form of Japanese confection. The rich taste of the matcha comes together with the sweet and sour strawberry to create a delicious combination. They are hand-wrapped fresh as soon as your order is put in to retain their freshness.

     

    Enjoy the full course winter has to offer at GINZA SIX, from soul-warming hotpot dishes to strawberry delights and more.

  • Enjoy a Luxurious Teatime Treat in The Characteristic Ginza Café ‘Tricolore’

    03.January.2020 | FEATURES / FOOD

    Hello!

    This is MOSHI MOSHI Friend Banako. 

     

    Today I’ll be introducing you to an old café in Ginza called Tricolore, where you can really feel the culture of Ginza. Tricolore has a rich history dating back to 1936. It is just a three-minute walk from exit A3 of Ginza station just off the main street. 

    From the outside, it looks like a gorgeous and luxurious hotel. 

    Considering its old, historic background, entering the café through a set of revolving doors was not expected. Once you enter, you will notice the grand showcase full of cakes beautifully arranged before your eyes. The neat pattern of brick walls filled the interior with character. Velvet chairs, sofas and trees created a beautiful atmosphere. 

    The smoking seats are located on floor one and floor two, which opens from 11:30, is for non-smoking. The entire interior was beautiful.

    I settled at a table and soon ordered the Cake Set for ¥1,520.

     

    From the selection of cakes, I chose the apple pie and for my drink, I ordered an iced cafe au lait. The drink prices are slightly cheaper before 11:30, making it more cost-effective to order a drink separately and not as part of a set. After 11:30, you can pay a little extra to order a different drink. 

    The thin and crispy pie pastry was stuffed with apples. Each delicious bite was filled with warmth. The cream was moderately sweet and perfectly balanced out sweet and tangy apple filling.

    When you order a cafe au lait, you can choose your ratio of coffee to milk and have it poured for you at your table. Being able to choose the strength of your coffee to this extent is very important to all coffee-lovers. Watching the drink being beautifully poured before your eyes fills you with a sense of luxury.

     

    The waiters and waitresses are always smiling and are very polite when serving customers. This is a very comfy place to enjoy breakfast or lunch. If you are looking for a spot to relax, this is definitely a good shout!

  • 5 Must-Eat Succulent Strawberry Desserts in Kyoto That Are Simply Kawaii

    31.December.2019 | FEATURES / FOOD

    Winter is here, which means that the season of strawberries has finally fallen upon Japan. Today we are joined by Instagrammer Tiara, who enjoys posting their adventures around Japan’s Kansai region to try out all of the sweets and desserts. We are taking a look at must-visit locations in Kyoto for a taste of their tempting strawberry delights.

     

    LITT UP.KYOTO in Gion-Shijō

    At LITT UP.KYOTO, their “ichigoame” lets you enjoy strawberries in their original cute form.

    They are coated in sweet strawberry candy and served on sticks in cups reminiscent of something from a Japanese festival. Part of their allure is how perfect they are as a tasty treat for walking around with. There’s even popping candy attached to the strawberries for an even sweeter textural treat.

     

    ▼LITT UP.KYOTO Gion

    Address: 533 Gionmachi Minamigawa, Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto

    Opening Hours: 10:00-18:00

    Official Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/litt_up_kyoto/

     

    Kissa Zou in Imadegawa

    The “Kisetsu no Babaroa” (Seasonal Baravois) at Kissa Zou has an springy texture and sits in a sweet and sour strawberry sauce.

    I recommend ordering one of the separate elephant cookies to place on top too to make this an even cuter dessert.

     

    ▼Kissa Zou

    Address: 440-3 Santeicho, Kamigyo, Kyoto

    Opening Hours: 9:00-18:00 (Last Orders 17:00)

    No Fixed Holidays

    Official Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kissa_zou/

     

    Chounohane in Fushimi

    At Chounohane they are serving strawberry barquettes as well as mini versions of them. The dessert itself is of course beautiful, but is made even more so by the antique plate♡

     

    ▼Chounohane

    Address: 791 Nishishujakucho, Fushimi Ward, Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture

    Opening Hours: [Tues/Sat/Sun] Shop & Cafe 11:00-17:00 / [Fri] Shop Only 11:00-17:00

    Official Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/chounohane/

     

    Utanekodo in Kyoto Shiyakusho-mae

    Utanekodo was renovated from a 100+ year old building and has its own cat cafe. The cafe space is located on the first floor.

    Their “Nyanko Strawberry Milk” speaks for itself, topped with adorable kitty ice cream and delicious with its subtly sweet taste.

     

    ▼Utanekodo

    Address: 155-4 Tachibanayanagicho, Nakagyo Ward, Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture

    Opening Hours: 13:00-20:00 (Last Orders 19:00)

    No Fixed Holidays

    Official Website: http://utanekodo.com/

     

    MASHOLA in Kyoto Shiyakusho-mae

    Finally we have the “Strawberry Tiramisu Cube Cake” served at MASHOLA, a Korean-style cafe. This cake is made with refreshing homemade tiramisu cream, delightful sponge, and is packed full of sweet and sour strawberries which complement the entire thing.

     

    ▼MASHOLA

    Address: 1-A MOVIX, 406 Sakuranocho, Nakagyo Ward, Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture

    Opening Hours: 10:00-20:00

    Official Website: https://mashola.business.site/

     

    All of these cafes are wonderful, so if you’re in Kyoto for the strawberry season, be sure to visit as many as you can.

     

    Tiara has plenty of other recommendations over on their Instagram page, so if you’re a sweet tooth looking for something sweet to indulge in around the Kansai area, be sure to give them a follow.

     

    Text & Photos: @happy_pinkrose_tiara

    Translation: Joshua Kitosi-Isanga

  • Irresistible Fruit Sandwich Shop “Futsu ni Fruits” Opens in Osaka

    30.December.2019 | FEATURES / FOOD / SPOT

    Popular Tokyo fruit sandwich shop “Futsu ni Fruits” has opened a branch in Osaka called “Futsu ni Fruits Tosabori Parlor”. With the help of Kansai’s expert dessert Instagrammer Tiara, we’ll be taking a closer look at the shop’s irresistible menu.

     

    Futsu ni Fruits is a sister branch of Omotesando’s popular café & bakery “Bread, Espresso &,”. Futsu ni Fruits at Tosabori Parlor in Osaka sells takeout sandwiches on floor 1 and has an eat-in café space on floor 2. 

    Fruit Sandwich

     The café menu varies according to the time of day. There’s a toast menu in the morning which sells toast with various fruit toppings. Futsu ni Fruits’ classic Fruit Sandwiches are available from lunchtime and onwards. The rich whipped cream embraces the flavour of the fruit filling perfectly, leaving a refreshing aftertaste. 

     

    The teatime menu is served from 3 pm which is your chance to try the Tosabori Parlor-limited Purin à la mode, parfaits and much more. 

    Seasonal Fruits Drink

    Purin à la Mode, Strawberry Milk and Coffee Milk

    The Tosabori Parlor-limited purin à la mode is a luxurious mountain of delicious fruit and purin. 

    If you’re curious to try a Japanese fruit sandwich then Futsu ni Fruits is guaranteed to give you an enjoyable experience. 

     

    If you’re a dessert-lover in Japan then you just have to check out Tiara’s Instagram which is a library of the most delicious desserts in the Kansai region. 

     

    Article Contents and Photos by: @happy_pinkrose_tiara

     

    *The information on the desserts mentioned in this article are subject to change at any time. For the latest updates, please refer to the links provided in this article.

  • Harajuku’s Korilakkuma Cafe: another me in the mirror | Food Review

    21.December.2019 | FEATURES / FOOD / SPOT

    “Korilakkuma Cafe: another me in the mirror” is set to open in Japan’s hub of kawaii culture Harajuku on December 21 where it will run until March 22 next year.

     

    MOSHI MOSHI NIPPON received early access to the cafe, so we went together with Ruki from Spain.

    The cafe incorporates “interactive tabletop projection mapping” technology developed by Sony, which allows customers to enjoy their meals while playing together with the characters as they walk around their plates and tables.

     

    So what exactly does this look like…?

    Korilakkuma Cafe: another me in the mirror is located along Takeshita Street in Harajuku. Enter Takeshita Street and walk just a little bit to find HARAJUKU AR BOX. The entrance is pictured above.

    The cafe operates on a “pair seating” system, making it the perfect spot to go with your best friend or special someone♡

     

    The theme of the cafe is “another me in the mirror,” which sees Korilakkuma meeting another Korilakkuma inside of a mirror. When seated at your pair table, you’ll notice all of the Korilakkuma artwork adorning the cafe.

    When we sat down, the staff came and gave us a dolomite coasterーa gift for all customers who visit the cafe.

    When you place the coasters down on the table, that’s when the fun begins. Trace your finger around the table to play with Korilakkuma and company.

    Here is Ruki having Korilakkuma move around.

    When we had finished playing, the appetisers from our course menu arrived. It costs ¥2,500 per person, and you both have to order when ordering this course menu. You can pick from clam chowder or minestrone.

     

    If you thought that was it for the projection mapping, think again! The fun was only just beginning, as a new display came on the table when the plates went down.

    Ruki was completely enchanted by the sparkling food. It makes you feel like you’re inside of a picture book♡

    The salad was Caesar, and the minestrone was packed full of veg and ingredients, making it nice and filling.

     

    The next dish that was brought was the main. You pick one each of a main dish and dessert and share between two people.

    We ordered the “Omurice – Let’s Draw Together” (in Japanese: 一緒におえかきオムライス). Korilakkuma was wrapped up completely in an omelette blanket. The projection mapping comes on when you set this plate down too.

    Korilakkuma draws around the plate, and we got to join in too by decorating Korilakkuma’s blanket with drawings of Rilakkuma and Kiiroitori in ketchup.

    The mapping helps you with drawing by projecting an outline you can trace. Ruki did hers really well!

    As we forked into the omurice we found a cheeseburger underneath! The combination of the juicy cheese hamburger with the soft egg was to die for, and it becomes even more delicious and smooth when you pour over the cream sauce.

    Last up was dessert. We got the “Spell-Cast Pancakes” (in Japanese: パンケーキに魔法をかけて). The projection mapping cast a mirror onto the pancakes. Even more animations happen when you wave the brush you’re given on the table.

    The fluffy pancakes are topped with a hearty serving of cream. You can enjoy them as they are, but they’re delicious if you top them with the fruits, iced cream and nuts scattered around the plate too!

    Twin Korilakkuma Strawberry Milk – ¥990

    Korilakkuma Cafe au Lait – ¥890 (Served Hot Only)

    As well as the course menu, there are also special drinks you can order separately which come with another free and exclusive coaster.

    Sliding Mirror (Pink or Purple) – ¥1,200 Each

    Acrylic Key Ring (4 Designs/Chosen Randomly) – ¥500 Each

    Korilakkuma fans can expect to sift through a whole range of cafe-exclusive merchandise too, so be sure to check out what they’ve got in stock when you visit.

    Korilakkuma Cafe: another me in the mirror is Harajuku’s hottest new spot where you can enter the kawaii world of Korilakkuma. Pull up a seat and enjoy and interactive meal experience.

     

    ©2019 San-X Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

  • PEANUTS Cafes and Diners Across Japan Release Christmas-Limited Snoopy Courses

    04.December.2019 | FOOD

    If you’re a Peanuts fan, you can’t miss out on the gorgeous Christmas menu which will served up at the PEANUTS Cafe Nakameguro, PEANUTS DINER Yokohama and PEANUTS DINER Kobe from December 2 – 25. 

    Order the Christmas Dinner course for a large angus beef steak drizzled with a sweet and tangy sauce made of berries and raspberry vinegar.

    After your dinner enjoy the luxurious Christmas desserts plate of bite-sized treats such as a soft and tender canelé and sweet madeleine. The plate is decorated with a Christmas Snoopy pick where Snoopy’s face can be seen peeking through a wreath. 

     

    You don’t have to book in advance but we recommend you do. This can be done via the links in the information section below.

    Order the Salmon Cheese Gratin Christmas Plate for a luxurious course of mains, salad and dessert all on one tray. The sautéd salmon is the steal of the show as it sits in a bath of creamy stew and is topped with a generous layer of cheese. This is served alongside fluffy bread branded with Christmas designs that will definitely put you in the Christmas spirit. A Snoopy pick replaces the traditional cherry on the sundae that will leave you with a sweet aftertaste after your meal.

    The White Hot Chocolate is the perfect way to ward off the cold of winter. Like a white blanket of snow, white chocolate milk fills the cup and is topped with the traditional colours of Christmas. Allow yourself to be soothed by the drink’s mild sweetness.

     

    Make the most of your Christmas with Snoopy and friends. 

     

    © 2019 Peanuts Worldwide LLC

  • Ginza Sony Park’s Milan Design Week 2019 Exhibition to be Shown in Tokyo

    03.December.2019 | SPOT

    Ginza Sony Park is set to display their #012 Affinity in Autonomy exhibition at the Ginza Sony Park buildingーwhich is a project for the renovation of the Sony Buildingーfrom December 14, 2019.

    Affinity in Autonomy was first shown by Sony at Milan Design Week 2019 which was held back in April. It received huge praise from attendees, and so Ginza Sony Park are bringing it back home to showcase at the building, which has enjoyed over 5 million visitors since it opened, for more people to experience it. The exhibit looks at elevating the affinity between humans and robots so that they may co-exist.

    Also as part of the exhibition, Sony will showcase five individual pieces entitled Awakening, Accordance, Autonomous, Affiliation, and Association, which make use of image sensors. As visitors experience each one in order, their affinity towards robots will grow. Sound and visuals will play in response to people’s movements.

    The exhibition combines sound, colour and interaction, offering new insight into robots. What’s more is that the robots recognise humans and response in real time, further enhancing the realism offered by the experience.

     

    If you’re in Tokyo this holiday season, and are looking for the robots, then be sure to pay a visit to Ginza Sony Park.

  • KIRBY CAFÉ to Release 15 More Café-Style Arrangements of Kirby Songs on CD

    27.November.2019 | ANIME&GAME / MUSIC

    The KIRBY CAFÉ will be releasing its second CD soundtrack called Sound of Kirby Café 2 on December 12. The soundtrack will be available to purchase from the KIRBY CAFÉ and KIRBY CAFÉ THE STORE in Japan.

    The KIRBY CAFÉ has only ever been a temporary café that makes an appearance now and again. However, it is finally sticking around for good from December 12. To celebrate, the café has a whole lineup of new songs. 

    HAL Laboratory, Inc. is the official sound team behind the Kirby’s Dream Land game series They have carefully selected 15 original songs from the game and arranged them specifically for use in the café.

     

    A team of six musicians, some of which are new, got together to create a variety of Kirby song arrangements. From sophisticated yet relaxing cafe-style songs to cute songs which represent the pop colours of the mains and desserts, each song perfectly preserves the catchy features of the original. From the careful song selection, the sound direction was done by Kirby’s Dream Land’s general director Shinya Kumazaki from HAL Laboratory, Inc.

     

    ​The KIRBY CAFÉ and store are also giving away free stickers decorated with the special design on the CD. These stickers are in limited supply and can only be obtained by purchasing the soundtrack from the café or official store. Information on general sales and online sales will be announced in the future. 

     

    Whether you’re cosying up on the couch or on the way to work, let the ​KIRBY CAFÉ’s official soundtrack create the perfect atmosphere for you. 

     

    © 2019 HAL Laboratory, Inc. /Nintendo

  • Valentine’s Day 2020: Japanese Chocolates, Golden Desserts & More at GINZA SIX

    24.November.2019 | FOOD / SPOT

    Winter may be cold, but that’s no excuse to stay indoors all day when there’s so many seasonal events and festivals to be enjoyedーespecially in Japan. With Christmas and New Year’s just on the horizon, it’ll soon be time to begin preparations for Valentine’s Day.

     

    GINZA SIX is the biggest shopping centre in Ginza, a district itself which prides itself as the high end part of Tokyo. Seeing as Ginza is home to many internationally-known chocolatiers, you can bet that GINZA SIX is sure to deliver when it comes to high-quality Valentine’s chocolates and sweets. And you’d be right in thinking that, because the shopping complex is ready to showcase some of the delectable delights set to pose in all of their delicious glory during the season of love. Whether it’s a treat to some premium chocolate to your special someone, or a bit of self-indulgence, GINZA SIX has you covered this coming Valentine’s Day.

     

    But that’s not all, because a string of pop-up shops are going to open too. Let’s take a peek into what’s to come.

     

    Premium sweets made with the “4th type of chocolate”

    We all know dark, milk, and white chocolate, but many people are still unaware of ruby chocolate. Made from ruby cocoa beans, the chocolate was officially unveiled in 2017, and is marketed as the “4th category” of chocolate. It will come as no surprise then that GINZA SIX will be making use of this still rare chocolate, as well as “blonde” chocolateーyet another unfamiliar type.

    Valrhona Blonde Chocolate Plate With Jasmine Scent – ¥1,200 @ THE GRAND GINZA

    Blonde chocolate’s characteristic quality lies in its combination of caramel and biscuit. The chocolate artisans over at Valrhona, a Japanese chocolate company savoured by some of the world’s top patissiers, have forged a blonde chocolate dome dessert injected with a raspberry puree and sweet vanilla mousse. The dessert is sat on a bed of crunchy crumble and surrounded with a pool of jasmine-scented blonde chocolate cream. This one’s for the adults to enjoy.

    Ruby Saku Langue de Chat (12 Pack) – ¥1,200 @ ISHIYA GINZA

    For a limited time only, ISHIYA GINZA’s langue de chat, also known as cat tongue biscuits, arrive in a ruby chocolate flavour. They took their delicious cat tongues and sandwiched smooth and sour ruby chocolate between them.

     

    Japanese-style chocolates

    These next chocolates are made with the Japanese spirit and palate in mind.

    Tsujiri Collection (8 Pack) – ¥2,360 @ Tsujiri

    The tea experts at Tsujiri have paired chocolate with matcha and houjicha, two types of tea that go perfect with chocolate. Bringing out the flavour of tea in their products is Tsujiri’s speciality. Houjicha comes as the newest flavour to this product alongside koicha, yuzu, sesame praline, Japanese pepper, sakura strawberry, and brown sugar.

    Kurosu Vinegar Raw Chocolate – ¥1,500 @ Shoubunsu Vinegar Brewery

    Kurosu vinegar is smooth and doesn’t have a strong flavour or smell. It goes well with these chocolates from the Shoubunsu Vinegar Brewery, including their slightly bitter milk chocolate and white chocolate with soy milk. Each bite offers a sweet, refreshing flavour.

     

    Textural chocolates

    If you’re here for the texture, then you’ve come to the right place. From a dessert that combines light pound cake with rich mousse to a melt-in-the-mouth chocolate terrine, GINZA SIX has no shortage of sweets with tempting textures.

    Rouge – ¥2,315 @ Patisserie Pavlov

    This dessert is made with pound cake and rich mousse and is lavish with ganache. It’s covered with a strawberry chocolate coating and finished with an artisanal chocolate decoration.

    Chocolate Terrine – ¥6,000 @ FRANCK MULLER GENEVE

    Luxurious is the word to describe this chocolate terrine, a heavenly mix of Swiss dark chocolate and tasty cultured butter, resulting in a complex flavour profile of richness and melt-in-the-mouth sweetness.

     

    Dine-in Valentine’s menu

    Another way to enjoy your time at GINZA SIX for Valentine’s 2020 is to sit down at one of the cafes or restaurants to enjoy one of their exclusive Valentine’s Day menu items, such as an afternoon tea. It’s a great way to spend your time with your loved one or as a get-together for all the singles out there!

    La Saint-Valentin Afternoon Tea Sets – ¥4,200 (Serves 1) @ THE GRAND GINZA

    “Noir & Blanc” (Black/White) is the theme of these afternoon tea sets, which come in two different colours and are towered with strawberry-packed sweets and savoury snacks. Will you go for the stylish noir, or the sophisticated blanc?

    Coppa Valentine – ¥1,819 @ Café Cova Milano

    Served in a wine glass, this strawberry dessert is a layered combination of sweet and sour strawberry sorbet, chocolate ice cream, and strawberry sauce. It’s topped with heart-shaped chocolate and a rose bell.

     

    Limited-time pop-up shops

    CAFÉ COVA (GINZA SIX Floor B2F) 

    CAFÉ COVA has lots of incredible surprises for the Valentine’s season next year, including a chocolate box wrapped in beautiful packaging, as well as the above-pictured heart and rose panettone (which, by the way, they’ll only be selling a select few of!)

     

    Paul Smith POP UP SHOP (GINZA SIX Floor 4F) / Open November 27, 2019 – January 14, 2020

    IDEAS FROM LONDON is a pop-up shop by Paul Smith that’s set to bring ideas from the UK to Japan. See their new fashion collection, special collaborative items, and more.

     

     

    This is just a select look at what’s to come when the season of love hits GINZA SIX. Make sure you don’t miss out.

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