cafe

First Hello Kitty cafe to open in California!

North American fans of the mouth-less Sanrio feline can now rejoice as the first ever Hello Kitty Cafe will finally land on their continent!

Announced in the form of a bright pink food truck at the Hello Kitty Convention held in Los Angeles, fans were elated to learn that Hello Kitty will finally get her own cafe in California! Judging by the extreme cuteness of the pictures released so far, it seems like this cafe will take kawaii to a whole new level!

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New cafe in Harajuku serves up Pom Pom Purin-shaped cuisine, attracts fans and pop idols alike

Despite being nowhere near as famous as his feline counterpart abroad, Sanrio’s Pom Pom Purin has a very loyal fan base in his homeland, so much so that the pastel-yellow “pudding” dog managed to clinch fourth place in this year’s Sanrio Character Ranking, at one point leading the pack.

But while Hello Kitty, My Melody and Kiki & Lala have all been given their own themed cafes, poor old’ Pom Pom has had to wait on the sidelines like the patient pup he is. But by the looks of it, the first ever Pom Pom Purin Cafe was well worth the wait, with the Harajuku location boasting a super-kawaii menu with meals, desserts and drinks featuring everyone’s favorite Sanrio canine as well as adorable merchandise available only at the cafe.

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Nicocafe dishes up a serving of surreal with manga meat, half an umaibo, and rice teishoku

Niconico is Japan’s biggest video sharing website – apart from that other one – and this week sees their unique café and creative space re-open in Ikebukuro, Tokyo.

The new nicocafe aims to bridge the gap between the online and offline worlds with its online interactive ordering system, which allows viewers watching at home to order items to be delivered to the guests at the bar!

We’re not sure how happy you’d be to actually receive some of these menu items, though…

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New ‘Shrine Cafe’ in Tokyo offers fortune-telling and counseling services with your tea

Hey everyone, how has 2014 treated you? Did you finally get that dream job you wanted? Or maybe you moved, or found a significant other?

With only a little over two months left in the year, you might find yourself already looking forward to what the new year has to offer. If you’re especially eager to get a ‘sneak-peak’ of what 2015 has in store for you, then this new Shrine Cafe located in Tokyo’s Takadanobaba neighborhood may just be the perfect place for you. It only opened its doors on the 14th of this month, but it already promises to fill a niche in Japan’s already abundant and eclectic cafe scene.

But wait–just what the heck is a shrine cafe??

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Gudetama the lazy egg now being served as actual dish, looks absolutely adorable!

Remember Gudetama, the apathetic anthropomorphized egg character from Sanrio with no desire whatsoever to do anything at all? Well, it seems the most unmotivated character we’ve ever seen from Sanrio has actually gotten down to business, if only for a limited time. That’s right, Gudetama now has his very own cafe at the Village Vanguard Diner at the Yokohama Lumine, and he appears in the menu as an edible ingredient, which we guess isn’t so improbable, since he is an egg, after all.  And boy, does he look adorable as part of a dish — definitely good enough to eat!

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Always wanted to try a romantic Kabe-don? There’s now a cafe for it!

We previously introduced Kabe-don, the romantic wall pound that has sent Japanese girls swooning. For guys that want to show off their tough love, this is the way to do it. In fact, it became so popular in Japan that even cats were found to have jumped on the Kabe-don bandwagon. Nevertheless, this writer has never experienced Kabe-don nor seen anyone actually do it. If you also long for a Kabe-don moment yourself, there is now a cafe in Harajuku, Tokyo that helps you do just that! The catch is, the Prince Charming of your Kabe-don is in fact a…life-sized figure.

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Cafe Talisman, Osaka’s Sailor Moon theme cafe

As we’ve previously discussed, Japan is chock full of cool little cafes. Obviously, not every single cafe in the country is going to be spectacular, but we have to say that we have found no end of fun places to sit down and order a coffee. But if you’re a Sailor Moon fan, we may have found the ultimate place to enjoy a latte: Cafe Talisman.

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These houses and cafes in Japan will teleport you into the world of your favorite fairy tales

The picture above looks like it could have been taken at the set of a cute children’s fantasy movie. Or perhaps a theme park. If not those, then maybe a really expensive themed restaurant. In fact, none of those would be correct. These are apartments in Japan. Yes, you can live in them.

Join us after the jump for a beautiful collection of fairy tale-like houses and cafes to delight your inner child.

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【Exploring Unfamilar Japan】We have dessert and meet a cow named Julia at an organic island café

La Cigale is a family-run cafe located in the heart of the largest of the Oki Islands, but it’s much more than a place to get a thoughtful cup of coffee. La Cigale is a hub for the community that supports local events and hosts field trips to teach children about sustainable farming. It’s also a place where neighbor kids gather to help pick vegetables or collect shiitake mushrooms in the nearby mountains. So while we thoroughly enjoyed the coffee parfait we indulged in at La Cigale, we were completely taken with the cafe’s farm-to-table philosophy and the intriguing history of its proprietors.

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Artistic éclairs featuring Japanese woodblock print by Hokusai available for a limited time only

Fauchon, the long-established luxury food brand from Paris, is well-known throughout Japan as a purveyor of high quality teas and cakes, but it’s their famous éclairs that are considered the créme de la créme of the sweet world.

To celebrate Éclair Week, Fauchon has opened a pop-up café for a limited time in Shibuya, Tokyo. Pictured are two of the éclairs on offer, one celebrating the deep pink colour that’s come to be associated with the French brand, and one that’s a jaw-dropping edible rendition of a traditional woodblock piece by famous Japanese artist Hokusai.

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A Fujoshi’s heaven on earth exists in Ikebukuro’s Boy’s Love Academy cafe

Japan should officially be known as the land of themed cafés. From cat cafés to owl cafés, character cafés and maid cafés… there’s even a café where you can pay 980 yen (US$9.57) to get two young men to share a stick of Pocky. Mouth to mouth. And that’s not all that is on their fantasy-inducing menu.

Regardless if you’re a fujoshi (girls who are fans of homoerotic fiction) or not, you should take a peek behind this particular curtain, because honestly, this probably isn’t something you’d get to see on an average day!

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Tea for trash – “Methane Cafe” offering free drinks in exchange for patrons’ kitchen waste

It’s often said that, rather than splashing out on expensive new appliances and fitting solar panels to our roofs, it’s the smaller changes we can make in our daily lives that will have an enormous positive effect on the environment. The act boiling a kettle, for example, may seem like a relatively harmless one, but – often because we boil more water than we actually use – we waste thousands of tons of carbon every single day simply by making cups of tea or coffee.

With that in mind, a new members-only cafe has recently opened its doors in the town of Osaki, Miyagi Prefecture, which uses energy from patrons’ kitchen waste to boil the water needed for a relaxing brew, making the green tea they serve some of the greenest in the world by far.

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Limited-time Pokémon shop and Pikachu Cafe to open in Roppongi Hills!

In celebration of the release of this year’s Pokémon movie Diancie and the Cocoon of Destruction on Saturday, a special “Pokémon the Movie XY Shop” will be open in Tokyo’s Roppongi Hills between July 19 and August 31. Pokémon fans will definitely want to stock up on the limited-edition goods being sold there, as well as sample the adorable Pikachu-themed food at the “Pikachu Cafe.” Plus, the shop will be located on the observation deck of one of Tokyo’s highest buildings, so you can fit in some essential sightseeing, too!

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【TBT】Tokyo’s Pico Pico Cafe: Where video games meet coffee

Despite having visited the town of Kichijoji in Tokyo on a near daily basis for over a year, it wasn’t until I sat down with video game developer James Kay and started chatting about our mutual love of pixels and coffee that I learned about Pico Pico Cafe, a cosy corner perched at the top of a eight-storey building just minutes from Kichijoji station.

After dropping the staff a line, RocketNews24 headed over for a coffee and a chat. We hadn’t gone two steps inside, however, before we found ourselves completely enamoured with the unique cafe’s warm, homely interior and – perhaps most of all for this life-long gamer – the subtle dashes of video game culture in every other nook and cranny.

Tons of cool photos after the jump.

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“The beer is my friend”: Watch the World Cup in style at this Captain Tsubasa Cafe

The World Cup is underway and Japan’s city streets are full of excitable-looking young people wearing blue soccer jerseys (sorry Dad, I mean “football shirts”). If you’re looking for somewhere in Tokyo to watch the game that’s a bit different – somewhere, for example, that’s got soccer-manga merchandise, weird themed food, and blue drinks that aren’t just beer with blue food-colouring in them – we’ve got just the place for you! When the staff at our Japanese sister site heard that a pop-up Captain Tsubasa Cafe was opening in Tokyo’s Ueno district, they couldn’t resist heading down there to take a look!

Captain Tsubasa, for the uninitiated, is a soccer manga (sometimes called Flash Kicker in English) created by Yōichi Takahashi in 1981. As is typical with popular Japanese manga series, Tsubasa and his team have since spread their wings into anime, video games, spin-off merch… and now this sports bar!

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Awesome castle-like café in Shikoku lacks dragons, does have crepes and coffee

Despite its well-deserved reputation as an extremely hard-working nation, Japan is also a country that knows how to relax. Every city has a number of cafes where you can stop, sip a drink, and soak in the soothing ambiance.

Some of these establishments style themselves after a comfy living room, while others feel more like a stylish library or lounge. Or, if you happen to be in Tokushima Prefecture, there’s the café built into what appears to be a crumbling castle.

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Food and decor at Kiki & Lala Cafe in Shibuya is sure to melt your heart, despite long wait time

Earlier this month we posted an announcement about a special limited-time Kiki & Lala Cafe in Tokyo’s trendy Shibuya district. The photos from the preview were just so adorable that we almost had little hearts spilling out of our eyes, and had to send a writer from our Japanese sister site Pouch over to get the inside scoop. After four failed attempts, she finally managed to make her way inside and discover the magical secrets within for herself. The reason it took so long for her to get in? It’s because the place is just too darn popular!  

If you’re a fan of Sanrio’s cute characters and are anxious to go for yourself but are a bit hesitant about the long wait, you’ll definitely want to check out our writer’s comments and eight practical tips for planning a visit.

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We visit the limited-time IKEA café in Tokyo

IKEA is a shopper’s paradise. The colors, the designs, and the price all work together and the impeccably presented showrooms make you want to recreate them in your own home. In Japan, there is the extra bonus of that “European style” that really speaks to some shoppers. IKEA is also well-known for its restaurant, where customers can relax and daydream about the new layout of their rooms while stuffing their face full of meatballs. For a limited time in Tokyo, IKEA has made it possible for you to experience living in a space all decked out in IKEA goods and stuff your face with Swedish meatballs at the same time!

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Enjoy the ambiance of Okinawa’s aptly named Cave Cafe (plus “chest hair of the ancients”!)

The folks at popular Japanese travel site Another Tokyo have given us the itch to go traveling again. We’ve gotten used to drooling over their cool photos of off the beaten track places around Tokyo, but this time they’ve branched out a bit — all the way to tropical, sunny Okinawa!

Although we have to give the Tokyo area credit for its share of unconventional cafes, you’ll be blown away by the photos from this “Cave Cafe” in Okinawa, which is located inside – you guessed it – an actual cave! If you’re traveling to Okinawa soon and looking to do something a bit extraordinary, be sure to add this spot to your sightseeing list. After all, how many people can claim to have sipped coffee in a cave?

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We visit Tokyo’s rabbit café to celebrate Easter in the cutest way possible 【Photos】

My wife, who’s always interested in learning more about foreign culture (no doubt in an effort to better understand her insufferably baffling husband), recently asked me how Easter is celebrated in America. “We usually hunt for Easter eggs and eat chocolate rabbits,” I told her, which quickly presented us with two problems. First, our apartment isn’t nearly large enough for a proper Easter egg hunt, and while you can get special Easter donuts in Japan, bunny-shaped candies are surprisingly nonexistent.

Stumped as to how to spend the holiday, my wife offered a suggestion. “Why don’t we go to the rabbit café?”

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