10 Character Cafés You Need to Visit in Tokyo
These collaborative hotspots range from the kakkoi (cool-looking) to the kawaii (adorbs)!
Photos official website of cafes featured
Japan has a themed restaurant for just about any interest imaginable. These character cafés are an immersive dining experience that appeal to our childhood whimsy and wonder.
From the fandom-accurate décor to the elaborate meal presentation, these little touches encourage us to stay in this fictional world. To begin your cafe-hopping journey, we’ve compiled a list where you can treat yourself to the cutest and coolest character dishes to ever grace the social media feed!
KAWAII MONSTER CAFÉ HARAJUKU x Hello Kitty
(July 12, 2019 – September 1, 2019)
Kawaii Monster Café’s overall aesthetic is influenced by Decora Kei, a Japanese fashion subculture emerging in the late ‘90s known for its loud colors, chunky bracelets, giant hairclips, face stickers, and general emphasis on accessories and layers. This pop-up collaboration fuses the classically cute sensibilities of Hello Kitty with the establishment’s trendy Harajuku street culture cred resulting in an explosion of acid neon hues.
Taste the rainbow with offerings such as the Colorful Pop Burger (¥1,680, excluding tax), Hello Kitty’s Harajuku Rainbow Curry (¥1,580, excluding tax), Harajuku Decora Ice Cream (¥1,080, excluding tax) served in a pastel pink pet bowl, Harajuku x KAWAII x Kitty’s Sweet Go-Rand Cake (¥1,480, excluding tax), a mini tiered dessert, and Harajuku Deco Wrap Cake (¥1,180, excluding tax), which looks more like a monster plush than noms.
For the complete experience, visit the Melty Hello Kitty Room decked out in all things HK and decora with pastry-shaped ornaments and furniture adorning every corner. Since seats are limited, you’ll have to reserve a spot in advance by calling or filling out an online form. Don’t forget to drop by the goods corner and snag one of the collaborative pieces like the signature Kitty bow with a Harajuku twist.
KAWAII MONSTER CAFÉ HARAKUJU is located at 4-31-10 4F YM Square Building Jingumae, Shibuya and is open from 11:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (Last order is at 3:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.) and 6:00 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. (Last order is at 10:00 p.m.) on weekdays and Saturdays. On Sundays and holidays, they are open from 11:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. (Last order is at 7:30 p.m.). The Melty Hello Kitty Room is open from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. on weekdays and Saturdays, 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Sundays and holidays. It’s a one-minute to walk from the Subway Chiyoda Line/Meiji Jingumae Station 1 and a five-minute walk from the JR Harajuku Station.
There’s an entrance fee of (¥800+ tax) for adults and (¥500+ tax) for children between 4 and 17 years old. Children under 3 years old can enter for free!
Otona no Jump Sakaba (Adult Jump Bar)
NANI?! That’s right, fellow otakus! One of the most popular shonen manga publishers ever will have a dedicated dining establishment inspired by their popular action titles. It’s more of an after-work bar than a dainty café but we gave it a pass because it’s the legendary Shonen Jump!
The establishment pays special attention to older titles such as Dragon Ball, Saint Seiya, City Hunter, and of course, the ever-memetic Fist of the North Star, which will surely delight the ‘80s kids.
The bar’s rugged, wooden interiors are what otaku dreams are made of with overlapping Shonen Jump covers lining the walls, life-sized statues, illuminated artworks, and a generous shelf display. There’s even a shop corner selling merchandise of your favorite anime heroes.
Before going off on your shonen adventure, dig into the Dragon Meatball (¥730+tax), Shuren of the Flames Grilled Meat Sushi (¥980, excluding tax), and Makimura’s 100-ton Hammer Cobb Salad (¥780, excluding tax). Need a tune-up? Get your protein fix with the Jun Kazemi Tool Box Chicken Basket (¥780, excluding tax), a set of fries, karaage, and nuggets served inside a toolbox. (No, you can’t take the kit home.) Boasting 42 dishes and 52 drinks that will satisfy even Goku’s insatiable appetite, you’ll be making several trips to try them all.
Otona no Jump Sakaba is located at 1-18-9 5F WaMall Kabukicho, Kabuki-cho, Shinjuku, Tokyo and is open on weekdays from 5:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. (Last order is at 10:30 p.m.). They are open on weekends and holidays from 2:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. (Last order is at 10:30 p.m.). It’s a five-minute walk from the Shinjuku Station and a four-minute walk from the Seibu Shinjuku Station. For more details, visit their official website here.
(June 11, 2019 - September 23, 2019)
Our favorite pudgy pink bottomless pit of a hero takes a break from Super Smash Bros. and Dream Land duties so he can run his own café.
Make like Kirby and inhale these themed noms: Curry of The Wispy Farm: The Ultimate Choice (¥2,580, excluding tax), a meatball curry with a garden variety of veggies, the meal comes with a free Kirby or Waddle pottery mascot.
Want an insta-worthy platter? Try Kirby’s Drain! Hot Dog With Cheese Sauce (¥1,580, excluding tax), which looks as if Kirby’s actually vacuuming the snack into its gullet.
Hankering for something sweeter? The Lost Things of Dedede The Great (¥1,880, excluding tax) is a fruity combination of strawberry, grape, peaches, and mango that will freshen up your palate. It also comes with a free bowl! The Maxim Tomato Complete Recovery Plate (¥2,480, excluding tax) will juice up your energy with a tomato overload of sherbet and jam with yogurt and cheesecake. (Plus, free Kirby or Waddle).
The souvenir shop sells plushies, bags, badges, character-shaped pasta, and even the quirky containers like Whispy Woods (¥3,800, excluding tax), Simmered Salad Bowl Kirby (¥3,600, excluding tax), and Maxim Tomato Mini Cup (¥1,800, excluding tax). So, what are you waiting for? Let’s bounce!
Kirby Café is located at the Tokyo Skytree Town in Solamachi 4/F, 1-1-2, Oshiage, Sumida Ward, Tokyo and is open from 10:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. (Last order is at 9:00 p.m.). You can contact them at +81-3-3622-5577. You must make an online reservation before visiting the café and the merchandise corner. For more details, visit their official website here.
SEGA Café x Pierrot 40th Anniversary
(June 29, 2019 – September 1, 2019)
Pierrot celebrates its 40th anniversary with a grand tie-up with SEGA Café starring the animation house’s famous creations: Yu Yu Hakusho, Bleach, Black Clover, Hikaru No Go, Naruto, and Boruto: Naruto Next Generations, to name a few. The catch? You’ll need to take your chances with the lottery system to book seats.
The main course varies depending on which promo period you’ve been selected to join. The character-themed drinks, side dishes, and dessert will remain the same.
Some of the meals to look forward to from July 20 to August 9 are the Naruto and Sasuke Special Noodles (¥1,200, excluding tax) a tsukemen tonkotsu ramen which features our hero’s namesake fishcake as a garnish and the Magic Book Sandwich (¥1,200, excluding tax), an edible version of the famous artifact from Black Clover.
From August 10 to September 1, you can try the White and Black Carbonara Udon (¥1,200, excluding tax), a Bleach-inspired Hollowfication of a classic snack, and Lightning Burger (¥1,200, excluding tax), a real-life version of Boruto’s favorite snack. Each order comes with a free food or drink coaster design and you can also buy button pins, acrylic keychains, and clear files featuring exclusive art of Pierrot’s popular characters all sleek and suited up.
The SEGA Café is located at SEGA Akihabara Building No. 2 6/F (Receiving Area is on 7/F), 1-15-1 Chikada-ku, Tokyo and is open from 10:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. It’s a two-minute walk from JR Akihabara Station electric street exit Chuo-dori. Turn left at the Manseibashi intersection. They only accept reservations via lottery system. You may check the specific date for scheduling and announcements on the official website here.
VINO BUONO x Aladdin Afternoon Tea
(July 14, 2019 – September 1, 2019)
Vino Buono shows you a whole new world of possibilities when it comes to midday snacking. The special Arabian Night Set (¥3,360, excluding tax) includes a shining, shimmering, splendid selection of tasty themed treats and teas to get you through the day. There’s flavorful balance of savory fare like tandoori chicken, seafood, and sweet selections such as lamp-shaped cookies and pistachio macarons in a similar powdery blue shade as the Genie.
If you don’t mind making additional arrangements, you may also avail of Vino Buono’s buffet, Aladdin and the Magic Lamp (¥4,800 to ¥5,000, excluding tax for adults and ¥1,500 for children from 6-11 years old), which requires an advanced reservation and only available on July 28 and August 18. The special themed will serve dishes like Mischievous Monkey Spice Mix (disclaimer: no monkeys were harmed in the creation of this meal), Jasmine Rice Coconut Raisin Pilaf, and Arabian Chocolate. With 60 available seats (including counter seats), there’s more than enough room for everyone to have their gastronomic wishes fulfilled. You’ve never had a meal like this!
VINO BUONO is located at Portofino 2/F, 3-15-5-, Kita-Aoyama, Minato Ward, Tokyo and is open on weekdays, except Mondays and Tuesdays, from 11:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (Last order is at 3:00 p.m.) and weekends from 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. (Last order is at 3:30 p.m.). You can contact them at +03-5774-0758. It is a three-minute walk from the Ginza Line/Chiyoda Line/Hanzomon line Omotesando Station A1 exit. For more details, visit their official website here.
Invite your trusted crew to the Akiba HQ and recover your energy in between intergalactic skirmishes by sampling their mecha-inspired menu.
There’s the Gundam Stew (¥1,058, excluding tax) with rice shaped like the signature “V” antenna, Shaazak Rice (¥1,188, excluding tax), which is a Zaku-style omurice, and the Mobile Suit Gundam Pizza (¥1,296, excluding tax), a cheese pizza with a drawing of an OG Mobile Suit Gundam character and a quotable speech bubble.
You can also relax with a piping hot cup of Gundam Café Latte (¥486, excluding tax). The drink comes with a foam character design featuring your mech of choice.
You can also drop by the DiverCity branch in Tokyo and try the Gunpla-Yaki (¥210, excluding tax), a cream-filled pastry patterned after the very first Gundam 1/144 plastic model kit design. The other branch has the unique distinction of being right in front of the larger-than-life replica of the Gundam Unicorn—a potential geeky photo op.
Both branches will offer the limited edition 40th anniversary items (until August 21) including the BEYOND Water Bottles (¥1,296, excluding tax) in variants of the Zaku face, suit, and full body patterns and the Gundam Mug (¥1,620, excluding tax). Before blasting off to another destination, go get your fandom fix at the Gundam Café Gift Shop where there are café-exclusive designs, Gunpla kits, and other official merchandise. (Cue the “Mission Accomplished” theme.)
The Gundam Café Akihabara branch is located at 1-1, Hanaoka-cho, Kanda, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo and is open daily from 10:00 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. (Last order is at 9:30 p.m. for food and 10:00 p.m. for drinks). You can contact them at +81-3-3251-0078. It is a one-minute walk from the Denkigai-guchi, a two-minute walk from Tsukuba EXP [Akihabara] Station, and three minutes from the Toei Subway [Iwamoto-cho] Station.
The Gundam Café DiverCity Tokyo Plaza branch is located at 1-1-10, DiverCity Tokyo Plaza 2/F, Aomi, Koutou-ku, Tokyo and is open daily from 10:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. It is a five-minute walk from the Yurikamome [Daiba] Station and a three-minute walk from the Rinkai Line [Tokyo Teleport] Station.
For more details, visit their official website here.
If you love all things Pokémon, then you should Pika-choose this café as one of your tourist destinations. After all, even Ash and Pikachu take a break from their adventures!
For your Starter Pokémon (geddit?), check out the following: Pikachu or Eevee’s Plate (¥1,706, excluding tax and ¥2,894, excluding tax with character plate included), Pichu-inspired Cheerful Bite Curry (¥1,598, excluding tax), and the Hamburg Doria (¥1,598, excluding tax) with a sleepy Snorlax likeness smack dab in the middle.
There’s always room for dessert so indulge in spoonfuls of Jigglypuff Cheesecake (¥1,166, excluding tax), Eevie’s Sweet Chocolate Parfait (¥1,274, excluding tax), and Pikachu Pudding a la Mode (¥1,382, excluding tax). For those requiring a java jolt of energy, enjoy the Pokémon Latte (¥756, excluding tax and ¥1,836 with the Poké Ball mug), which lets you choose from over 200 designs!
For a non-caffeinated option, go for Gengar’s Tasteful Light Smoothie (¥864, excluding tax and ¥1,728, excluding tax with the Gengar glass), a grape-flavored shake that will haunt your taste buds with its deliciousness.
Pokémon Café also has seasonal offerings with the recent ones being food forms of Eeveelutions (available until September 6, 2019): Espeon’s Teriyaki Chicken Burger and Umbreon’s Fried Chicken Burger (both ¥1,598, excluding tax). Gotta catch ’em all before you leave Japan!
Pokémon Café is located at Sugashima ya, S.C. East Building 5/F Nihonbashi, Chuo-ku, Tokyo and is open daily from 10:30 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. and require an advanced reservation. (Last order is at 9:00 p.m. for food and 9:30 p.m. for drinks). It is a four-minute walk from the Tokyo Metro Ginza Line and a five-minute walk from the JR Tokyo Station Yaesu North. You can contact them at +81-3-6262-3439. For more details, visit their official website here.
Peter Rabbit Garden Café Jiyugaoka
Step into Beatrix Potter’s whimsical wonderland of verdant front yards, handwoven baskets, checkered tablecloths, and other charming details that will transport you to the English countryside.
You’ll be munching and crunching your way through delectable treats such as The Hamburg Steak Pie (¥1,580, excluding tax), a hamburger steak-filled savory pie shaped like a rabbit, Jemima’s Omurice (¥1,380, excluding tax), a hamburger steak covered in a demi-glace sauce topped with an edible likeness of Jemima Puddle-Duck, and Peter Rabbit’s Sleepy Salad (¥980, excluding tax), which feature the vegetables from the story.
Perk up with desserts like Peter Rabbit’s Berry Bouquet (¥1,480, excluding tax), a fruit parfait served in a watering can, Mrs. Tabitha’s Sweets Stand (¥1,880, excluding tax), which offers a sampler’s size of its treats, and the Victoria Sandwich Cake (¥1,480+tax), with strawberry and vanilla filling.
Wash it all down with Peter Rabbit’s Garden Café Original Tea in Darjeeling (¥680, excluding tax) or Original Blend (¥580, excluding tax). There are also Cappuccino (¥780, excluding tax) drinks with character art. Beatrix Potter’s literary classics are strategically strewn all over the place, so you can catch up on some light reading with your spot of tea or cup of coffee.
Peter Rabbit Garden Café is located at MYU 1/F Jiyugaoka, Meguro-ku, Tokyo 152-0035 Jiyugaoka and is open daily, including holidays, from 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. (Last order is at 8:00 p.m.). It is a three-minute walk from Jiyugaoka Station. You can contact them at +81-3-3725-4118. For more details, visit their official website here.
The golden retriever that’s wiggly and jiggly like caramel pudding has his very own permanent character café right in the heart of Harajuku. Pompompurin Café’s interiors are soaked in warm tones of custard yellow and syrupy brown, giving an overall comforting vibe.
Nosh on scrumptious savory fare such as the Fluffy Futon Omurice (¥1,190, excluding tax) that includes an optional PomPomPurin Mug with the meal (¥1,490, excluding tax), Roast Beef Bowl (¥1,290, excluding tax), and Colorful Flower Curry (¥1,290, excluding tax). For a sweeter treat, check out the Chocolate Banana Pudding Parfait (¥990, excluding tax), Dream Parfait (¥1,290, excluding tax), and of course the character’s namesake, PomPomPudding (¥500, excluding tax).
There’s also a souvenir shop where you can stock up on merchandise. Fans of the Sanrio character and doggo-lovers in general should make a pitstop at this pupper’s place!
PomPomPurin Café is located at 1-7-1 Jingumae 3/F CUTE CUBE HARAJUKU, Takeshita Dori, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo and is open daily from 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. (Last order is at 8:00 p.m. for food and 8:30 p.m. for drinks). You can contact them at +81-3-5786-0770. For more details, visit their official website here.
Artnia Square Enix
After a day of exploring Tokyo, you can replenish your HP and MP at this savepoint made for JRPG fans. Found outside video game developer Square Enix’s headquarters in downtown Shinjuku, the official merchandise store-slash-bar and café features food and booze inspired by video game franchises such as Final Fantasy, Kingdom Hearts, and Dragon Quest.
Artnia’s modern minimalist aesthetic from the egg-shaped exterior to the monochromatic layout will appeal to the no-frills adult gamer. There’s a boutique where you can purchase Square Enix collectibles, a soundtrack listening station, and a special Final Fantasy display featuring the iconic crystal waterfall in the middle.
Treat yourself to desserts like Slime Chocolate Pancake (¥1,010, excluding tax tax), Moogle Strawberry Pancake (¥980, excluding tax), and the character Parfait which comes in three variants plus chocolate shaped like an FFVII item: Chocolate with Cloud’s Buster Sword (¥930, excluding tax tax), Matcha with Yuffie’s Shuriken (¥950, excluding tax tax), and Strawberry with Aerith’s Ribbon (¥980, excluding tax tax).
If you’re thirsting for a potion, try Blue/Red Materia (¥930, excluding tax tax), a cocktail of gin, limejuice, and blue curacao/crème de cassis that’s shaped like the actual orb. However, if you need a full revival, go for Phoenix (fashioned after the FF recovery potion), a beer-based cocktail mixed with tomato juice and Tabasco sauce. Bottoms up!
Artnia Square Enix is located at 6-27-30 1/F Shinjuku East Side Square, Shinjuku, Tokyo and is open daily from 11:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. (Last order is at 9:00 p.m. for food and 9:30 p.m. for drinks) You can contact them at +81-3-6457-6714. For more details, visit their official website here.