Wait…Zoka’s in Japan?!?!
I know, right? I found out from my friend Hiro yesterday that Zoka (independent cafe and coffee roaster from Seattle) has a branch in Japan. Actually I googled it and it turns out they have 3 branches in Japan! One in Yokohama, one in Ikebukuro, and one in Akasaka – here is the Japanese website with all the information. Seattleites, did you know about this?! The normal website doesn’t mention the Japanese branches at all. Anyway I am quite pleasantly surprised.
- maybe the best coffee I’ve had in Japan…maybe I’m biased?
- a small drip coffee is around 330 yen, so about $3 (which is actually not bad here – its usually between 300 and 600yen)
- The place looked similar, but had a completely different vibe – no students on macs, no intense bike riding groups. Instead, lots of foreign and Japanese business people – so it didn’t feel as relaxed.
- The staff seem really well trained and do all the impressive foam art – they are also incredibly polite as usual for Japanese service jobs.
- The food is definitely adapted for Japanese tastes- I mean, they still had grilled sandwiches and salads, but the sandwiches have different fillings (like potato and corn salad, or tuna and sundried tomato), and the salad has a creamy sesame seed dressing thats used often here. And, sadly, there was no delicious dessert selection like in Seattle – just a few different muffins and scones (tinnnnyyy ones).
****Evaluation: Its not exactly like home of course, but its comfortable and similar – its Zoka Japanese style, and I like that. : ) I’ll be going back often for sure – I will take this over Starbucks in a heartbeat.