Starbucks has branches in many parts of the world, however the shops in Japan are very popular among the visitors and the reason lays in the harmony created by the Japanese culture and its elements incorporated into the shop’s creations, architecture, merchandise, limited edition-goods (such as sakura/cherry blossom milk latte,for example) and so on.
Starbucks is now bringing the world its new biggest store, the “Starbucks Reserve Roastery” that will open tomorrow, on 28th of February, 2019 in Tokyo, Japan. More exactly, in Nakameguro.
An enormous roastery with 4 floors with copper-clad roasters you can see in action, roasting the aromatic coffee beans and surrounding the place with a wonderful aroma, a place designed in collaboration with Kengo Kuma, the famous Japanese architect that also made the design for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Stadium, a coffee shop where you can sit and enjoy the magical atmosphere of the place over a cup of coffee.
I had the pleasure to explore the place before its opening and hopefully through this article and my experience, you can get an idea about its concept, the building’s design and beverages it has to offer and a glimpse of the atmosphere that surrounds this beautiful place.
Now, let’s start our coffee journey in …
Starbucks Reserve Roastery is a high-end roastery that first debuted in the US in 2014, followed by Shanghai, Italy and other places in China.
Now, Starbucks finally opened a store in Japan, Nakameguro, a splendid area in central Tokyo. The guests will be able to enjoy creative beverages made by professionals, chat with the baristas, enjoy the process of roasting the beans, connect with people and have an unforgettable experience in the coffee shop.
The building is built from cedar tree and is now the world’s largest roastery. The high-end building has 4 floors, a terrace, a bar, a bakery, a lounge,a main bar with espresso drinks and many other unique elements such as origami ceiling, whisky barrel wall, teacup walls, real coffee trees, symphony pipes and glass windows where you can enjoy a serene view of the sakura trees etc.
Starbucks is using Roasteries in order to test out different concepts and designs, the menu, the brews and beverages served being a combination of art and science with many signature creations and drinks.
Coffee beans are shot throughout the building using the symphony pipes and when that happens, a brass sound surrounds the building while the beans are being transported from the Copper cask to the coffee silos, from the 1st floor all way up to the third.
I had the opportunity to taste the Americano con Crema, a beverage with a hint of sweet orange and a delicious creamy foam topped with cinnamon creating a perfect harmony in combination with the delicious coffee and ultimately, turning it into an authentic Americano with a special touch given by the flavorful elegant and dense foam and unique collaboration of the ingredients.
Besides the Americano con Crema you can also have a taste of other different blends and while you`re at it, give a try to the beautifully arranged Cascara Lemon Sour, an innovative mix of maple syrup, freshly squeezed lemon juice and freshly brewed coffee topped with a Cherry and Cascara Sugar.
Now that we have our coffee, how about some dishes?
The love for coffee and the love for bread resulted into a perfect collaboration of the Italian bakery, Rocco Princi with the Roastery bringing us many varieties of aperitifs and dishes, numerous recipes of fresh-oven made pizza, cakes and desserts (made by the baking artisans) you can enjoy while sipping a mouth of coffee or tea and looking over the glass window at the idyllic view Nakameguro has to offer.
I recommend going in spring, when it’s full of cherry blossoms and the nature comes to life, so the scenery looks divine!
Up to the 2nd floor of the building, you enter the world of tea and as you go up the stairs, the wall created by skillful craftsmen will get your attention making you focus on the 2,300 Teavana cups, beautifully attached to the wall that create an interesting choice of contrast together with an amazing technique, the result turning into a sublime and unique decor of the room.
A Japanese(washi) paper wall, the origami ceiling and the beautiful spring atmosphere created by the skylight from the first floor up to the fourth is full of cherry blossom motifs in different sizes and surrounds you into a peaceful atmosphere where you can forget your worries and just relax over a cup of tea and a delicious dessert.
The drinks have many peculiar drinks such as Cream Soda Matcha or Nitro Milk Tea, but also different blends of tea like Uji Gyokuro, Darjeeling, Sakura Allure and other soothing flavours.
What brings more attention to this place is that they even serve alcohol beverages, all made by talented bartenders that combine coffee, tea and alcohol and give birth to an innovative creation, an elegant design and an unforgettable taste.
I tried the Signature Cocktail, “Spring Shower” and the “Nakameguro Espresso Martini” and I must say I was profoundly impressed by the elaborate flavour that tastes way differently and more complex than I would`ve imagined it will.
I was shocked from the first sip at how the mix of ingredients can bring such a new aroma, a flavour that lingers on your tongue leaving such a pleasant taste and enlightens your taste buds.
The beautifully crafted accessories and serveware you can only get here have so many details and look so elegant and stunning that I`m sure you will find the one of a kind creation that suits your taste.
The Starbucks Reserve Roastery will be open tomorrow, February 28th on Thursday , so take this opportunity to visit it while you`re in Japan, connect with people, enjoy a peaceful atmosphere over a Starbucks beverage in an unforgettable atmosphere and environment.