Good Eats: Aoyama Flower Market Tea House (Tokyo)

Oddly enough, I have a fairly strong recollection of writing this post before, back in the late spring. I can’t find it in the archives and there’s no hint of it on the website so I must be having an all-too-early senior moment. 🙂 I know I should be focused on fall leaves and winter hot spots but this flower-filled cafe is just too good not to recommend.

The Aoyama Flower Market sits just across from one of the Omotesando metro exits. When I visited, the day was a canvas of gray drizzle, but the colors of the blooms inside the flower market were like paint splotches on a moody background. Inside the market building, however, there also stands a tea house. You could walk past the front of this shop and never notice it, as it’s hidden back away from the street and blocked by the numerous pots of blooms. The walls and ceilings are decked out in vines and carnations graced some of the tables. It was like a floral fairyland, and while I don’t usually go in for the frilly stuff, this was a delightful scene.

The interior of the cafe – my picture doesn’t really do it justice

Go on a weekend (I was there on a Sunday in early May) and expect to queue up for a table. My wait was about 20-25 minutes, and I was about 8th or 9th in line when I put my name on the list. There are seats inside the cafe itself to avail yourself of while waiting but if the line is long, expect to stand in the flower shop itself, jostling a bit with the market’s actual customers.

The menu isn’t large but I have no complaints. They don’t serve coffee – and I don’t drink it – so the choice of hot mango tea was an easy one. On the advice of blogger Maki from Tokyo Eats, I also ordered the French toast and was served five perfectly grilled rounds of slightly sweetened batter-dipped bread. They were heavenly alone, but in case I wanted to indulge, I was also presented with whipped cream, honey and cinnamon.

The delicious French toast
The delicious French toast

I was solo on this trip so I had a seat at the back counter that looked out into a greenery filled cement patio. Not exactly the most attractive but all I had to do was turn my head slightly to the side and voila – flowers once again filled my vision. Despite the line out the door, I never felt rushed by the staff, who were helpful but unintrusive. Had I not had a schedule to keep (I always have a schedule to keep, it seems!), I would have gladly wiled away some of the afternoon’s wettest hours there … and I certainly would have ordered more French toast. 🙂

The official website is in Japanese only but use google translate, or check out the write-up on Tokyo Eats.

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