Golden Week has been, well, golden. After four months of winter dreariness, Tokyo has burst into summer without a real spring (so much for the much vaunted distinct four Japanese seasons).
Having discovered that I can walk from my crib (recently moved to a new hood) to Jiyugaoka in a little under fifteen minutes, I decided a little lunch was in order, so as to take in some of the Sweets Festa that was rockin’ the town at the time. Although I did manage to see the candy house, I actually recall seeing more yakisoba stalls than sweet stalls. But hey, who am I to complain?
My dining partner and I lunched at J.S. Pancake Café, situated on that lovely wide, tree filled street that looks and feels more like Camden than Tokyo (due not only to the trees, park benches and well designed shop fronts, but also the lack of hideous overhead cables and whatnot). Unsurprisingly, the shop itself is on the top floor of the Journal Standard apparel store, hence J.S. Pancake Café by Journal Standard.
Nice bright, airy room. Wooden floors, pale wood furnishing, somewhat “girly,” if you know what I mean. Place was packed at the time of my visit, lots of young women, a few couples, and lots and lots of pancakes.
We ended up seated by the glass façade looking down on to the street below, so while waiting for our orders I enjoyed watching the passing scenery below. Tokyo and warm weather equals lots and lots of nice scenery. Especially if in Jiyugaoka…
I had the BLT pancake, which also came with a fried egg. My dining partner the chicken curry with pancakes. Sounds weird? Let me explain.
The BLT pancake looked and felt more like an English Breakfast pancake to me, thanks to the fried egg I suppose. Two pancakes – not the thin, soggy, Judeo-Christian myth-inspired variety I was used to in the UK, but the colonial version (basically the Japanese "hotcake") I see New York lawyers have for breakfast in the movies. It all tasted great, and was certainly novel. However, I would have liked it to have been properly put together, like a sandwich, as I spent too much time having to choose what components to put on my fork. Anyway, it was enjoyable and went nicely with the Heartland beer.
My dining partner’s (maybe time to abbreviate to DP now?) lunch came in the form of a reasonably sized bowl of chicken and vegetable curry, with nice chunky, easily identifiable veggies contained therein, and a side plate of several small pancakes. After much deliberation, we decided to treat the pancakes as little naan, and eat the curry in the usual curry manner.
Worth a visit? Sure. Tasted good, although not mind blowing, and some interesting sounding dishes on the menu. Pleasant atmosphere and surroundings. Normal price point. Enough said.