I finally found a place not far from my home that does good coffee! I always knew there were decent baristas out there somewhere, it was just a matter of tracking them down. Coffee is definitely something I miss about living in Australia. Especially after spending a few years in Melbourne, the coffee capital of Oz, it was a shock the first time I drank a ‘cappuccino’ here in Japan. There are a million and one chain cafés, but none seem to make coffee any better than the instant stuff I can have at home! Generally, I don’t think Japanese people enjoy drinking it or appreciate the coffee-making process. It’s just another drink, which is obvious from their love of canned coffee – although I do admit, a heated can of coffee from a vending machine is pretty awesome on cold winter days.
That being said, of course there are baristas that are passionate about what they do, and are good at it, too. Miki Suzuki has made a name for herself at the World Barista Championship over the past few years. She is associated with Maruyama Coffee which have just opened a classy new café here in Tokyo (it’s on my to-do list!).
I came across Primoordine in the Time Out Tokyo city guide [which, by the way, is a great website/magazine to keep up with what’s going on!] It’s located near Komazawa Olympic Park in Meguro. The café itself is laid-back and spacious, with about 20 seats and a standing counter for those having a quick coffee (it’s cheaper if you stand and drink). The menu was in Japanese and English, and they had an American radio station playing, which made the place seem fairly Westernized but not to the point of trying too hard. Then, out came my cappuccino… with a cute heart design. I’m a sucker for cute things. But the best part was, it was good, smooth, frothy, Italian-style coffee, just the way I like it :) It may not be the best in Tokyo, but it was enough to satisfying my cravings. I ended up staying for a couple of hours, enjoying the atmosphere and reading a book. A surprisingly lovely afternoon.
For those interested, here is their website >> http://espressoacademy.blog96.fc2.com/