Nestled deep within a batch of trees is a café that transports you to Hayao Miyazaki‘s world of Ghibli. If you haven‘t seen any of the Ghibli movies, stop what you’re doing and take a couple of days to marathon them. I guarantee you‘ll fall in love instantly.
Shiro-Hige's Cream Puff café is not like any other themed café in Japan. There's no service charge and the only thing that makes this “themed” are the hints of Ghibli décor and the My Neighbor Totoro shaped cream puffs. It has a very authentic and whimsical vibe. I‘d say this place is perfect for a casual date of any kind.
The café is actually a European-style house with tables both outside and inside but be warned - if you go in late summer you‘ll be attacked by mosquitos. Luckily the staff provided mosquito repellent to ward them off. My friend and I still opted to eat indoors.
If you go on a weekend, make sure you get there early. We went on a Japanese holiday and were surprised we only had to wait thirty minutes. We assumed people thought since it was a holiday, the cafe might not be open. In other words, we got lucky.
You CAN make reservations by calling but it isn’t necessary if you don’t mind putting your name in and waiting.
During our wait, we took the time to snap pictures and explore the house. The cream puff factory is actually separate from the Tolo Tokyo Pan restaurant on the second floor. You can still order a cream puff at your table as a dessert. The first floor is where you can order takeaway cream puffs and take a look at all the Totoro themed decorations. Totoro themed cookies are also available for purchase.
When our name was called, we sat on the second floor next to a window near all the lovely trees. The menu consisted of pasta, salads, and of course coffee and cream puffs. We ordered two different kinds of pasta: fettuccini in a meat and cream sauce and seafood pasta in a spicy tomato sauce. The quality of the food was, in my opinion, worth every yen. Each meal ranged from 1,000 to 1,300 yen. The cream puffs ranged from 400 to 500 yen.
It was still considered summer so they had a seasonal cream puff with mango or peach cream. In the fall, that part of the menu will change. The cream puffs were way too cute to eat! But, once it was in my mouth, it was the end for this adorable little guy. Sorry, cutie!
To say the least, the service was fast, the atmosphere was very enjoyable, and the Ghibli accents are what made this experience worth it. If you’re traveling around the Tokyo area, this is the perfect place for lunch with friends or family.
Here`s some more photos I took from the cafe:
Shiro-Hige's Cream Puff Factory is only a five minute walk from Setagaya-Daita Station and only a fifteen minute walk from Shimokitazawa Station.
If you’re looking for some off the beaten path adventure after this amazing lunch, Gotokuji temple is only one stop away and a 10-minute walk from Gotokuji station. It houses an army of lucky cat statues and a beautiful park.
Not far from the café and only a 15-minute walk is Shimokitazawa - home of all the second hand and vintage clothing and merchandise you can imagine. If you have the time, spending the day in these places would a perfect addition to your Tokyo itinerary.
Place: Shiro-Hige`s Cream Puff Factory
Hours: Monday ~ Sunday (closed Tuesdays) 10:30AM - 7:00PM
Closest Station: Setagaya-Daita Station
Directions: 5 Chome-3-１ Daita, Setagaya-ku, Tōkyō-to 155-0033
Click here for Google Maps
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