Tokyo’s Top Five Cafés
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As I sit in the staffroom sipping my lukewarm, bitter, flavorless school drip coffee (because I’ve run out of the next best thing, Blendy sticks) I cast my mind back to my weekend in Tokyo… visiting amazing cafés, stylishly drinking macchiatos as if I was Kim Kardashian buying shoes at Louis Vuitton. If you’re feeling like me and (constantly) craving a decent coffee then here is my top five cafés to visit in Tokyo for a bloody decent coffee.
One of the first cafés I visited when I arrived in Japan (I may have wagged a seminar at Tokyo orientation to go here) is still a favorite of mine. Hidden in the backstreets of the uber-stylish Omotesando area, this café is a little hard to find but once you do, you’ll be rewarded with one of the best cups of coffee in Tokyo. The drink choices are limited but each is handcrafted by the single barista behind the counter. Coffees are mostly for take-out but there is a quaint Japanese garden you can sit in whilst enjoying your coffee. Also don’t forget to grab one of their baked custard squares – DIVINE!!!!
Mitch Recommends: cappuccino dopio, iced Baileys cappuccino & baked custard squares!
Location: 4-15-3, Jingumae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Nearest Train Station: Meiji-Jingumae
Opening Hours: 10:00am – 7:00pm
Official Website: www.ooo-koffee.com
Little Nap Coffee Stand
All us hipsters in Gunma will love this lil’ coffee stand located opposite Yoyogi Park. With only a few stools inside the store you’ll find most people standing outside, or sitting on the wall opposite the store with their RAZR scooter propped next to them (‘coz you know hipsters), sipping their drink. The coffees are strong and flavorful here. For something on the mellower side I’d suggest the lattes. All of the coffees are made to perfection with beans roasted on-site. They also stock a good range of biscuits, muffins (YES MUFFINS!!!!), and delicious ice cream too.
Mitch Recommends: drip coffee when you need a big hit, and a latte when you need a little hit.
Location: 5-65-4 Yoyogi, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo
Nearest Train Station: Yoyogi-Hachiman
Opening Hours: 9:00am – 7:00pm (closed Mondays)
Official Website: http://www.littlenap.jp/loc/
A café that combines two of my favorite things — coffee & cocktails (oooooh espresso martini yum). Fuglen Tokyo is the Japanese branch of a famous Norwegian café that offers amazing coffee during the day before switching to a cocktail bar at night. With its vintage-chic interior this café makes it easy to waste a few hours sipping your drink whilst lounging around on the comfy couches inside. The seats outside also make for a great people watching spot.
Mitch Recommends: coffee – cortado, cocktail – their take on the classic Pina Colada made with coconut water and coconut infused rum.
Location: 1-16-11 Tomigaya, Shibuya-ku Tokyo
Nearest Train Station: Yoyogi-Koen
Opening Hours: 7:30am – 10:00pm (weekends 11:00am – 10:00pm)
Official Website: www.fuglen.com
Once again this coffee shop is in Omotesando (can you tell I spend a lot of time in that area). The Roastery is tucked away on one of the many small side streets that give Omotesando its character. One great thing about The Roastery is their extensive bean selection. Also if you order an espresso you can have it served to you in a champagne glass. Yeah you heard right — a shot of espresso in a champagne glass. That’s the only way I drink mine now, some of the teachers in the staffroom look at me a bit weird but they’re just jealous clearly. Also directly above The Roastery is The Smokehouse, a delicious restaurant full of meat. Ribs, steak, meat plates, meat on meat, and meat dipped in meat sauce covered in meat shavings. Meat.
Mitch recommends: espresso in a champagne glass… I’m not going to say it again.
Location: 5-17-13, Jingumae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Nearest Train Station: Meijijingu-Mae
Opening Hours: 11:30am – 10:00pm
Official Website: www.nozycoffee.jp
Slow Jet Coffee
I know what you’re all saying…. ‘Mitch all these coffee shops are in Omotesando’ and I say to that — I got you girl, here’s one that’s not! Recommended to me by my 61yr old host-mother (so you KNOW it’s the place to be seen), Slow Jet Coffee is located about a 10-minute walk from Kita-Senju station. The coffees are smooth and flavorful, the beans are roasted on site and the setting is very relaxing. It’s a lot quieter than the other cafes on the list, and there are far less of those pesky foreign tourists we all despise (or is that just me?). A good selection of paninis and cakes are also available here.
Mitch Recommends: the macchiato (one of the best I’ve had in Japan!)
Location: 1-29-12 Senjuazuma Adachi-ku, Tokyo
Nearest Train Station: Kita-Senju
Opening Hours: 7:00am – 7:30pm
Official Website: www.slowjetcoffee.com
Now I know there are plenty more coffee shops out there, and I myself have a long list of places yet to visit, but do yourself a favor and visit some of these cafés! If you have any recommendations of cafés that you think we would like then… keep them to yourself. I’m the author of this list, not you! If you wanted to write about your favorite cafés then you should have thought about it earlier. Joking (*fabulous wave of the wrist*), I’d love to hear them so please link them below so we can all get addicted to coffee together!!!
If you love coffee as much as Mitch and would like to write your own top café list please email it to [email protected]. Don’t want to leave good ol’ Gunma just to get a cup of coffee? Let us know what your favorite cafés in gunma are below!