I was never a fan of pancakes before coming to Japan. Those I’ve previously had tend to be a bit too filling and cakey for my liking. However, after trying out a number of pancake houses here in Tokyo, I’ve been amazed at the contrasting difference ways of making one pancake from the other. Each pancake house coming up with their own kind. I’m definitely in love with the pancakes here in Tokyo!
1) J.S. Pancake Café
J.S. Pancake Café offers sweet pancakes, meal pancakes, sides, flatbread, and salads. J.S. Pancake’s winning point is its considerably affordable prices. Most pancakes range from 1000 to 1200 yen. Seasonal specials and discounts are also available. There are all-you-can-eat-salad-bar days, free-strawberry-topping days. I tried the June special item – the Macadamia Nuts Cream Sauce Pancake.
Savoury and not too sweet, the pancake itself however didn’t quite amaze me. They were flat and a little bit cakey, though the cream sauce made up for it.
J.S Pancake Café can be found at Nakano, Shimokitazawa, and Jiyugaoka. For outlet information, please click here.
2) Café Accueil
One of the big names in the pancake scene, Café Accueil’s atmosphere and pancakes set it apart from the rest. Located in Ebisu and Yokohama, both branches have a beautiful storefront, making it a great place at which to have a leisurely afternoon tea.
Café Accueil only offers sweet pancakes (with the alternative being Tomato Pancakes if you’d prefer), though mains, sides and cakes are also available for order. On my visit, I tried the Vanilla & Banana Pancake and the June-July special Peach Rare Cheese Pancake. I really liked the Peach Rare Cheese Pancake – the one-layered pancake was crisp on the outside and soft on the inside. The cream cheese was light, and went well with the sweet peach bits and sugar frosting.
The Vanilla & Banana Pancake was a sight to behold. A two-layer stacked pancake heaped with banana slices, at least 3 scoops of vanilla ice cream and 3 scoops of whipped cream, topped with chocolate sauce drizzled over it, the pancake was epic.
Café Accueil would definitely be one of the places I would want to return to try the other items on the menu like the Marshmallow Pancakes, and Mont Blanc Pancakes.
3) Burn Side St Café
Located on Omotesando, near other famous restaurants like Eggs N Things, Burn Side St Café is a small 29-seater establishment tucked away off the main street of Omotesando.
If you’re looking for fluffy pancakes, this is the place to go to. The White Soufflé Pancake that I ordered literally wobbled on the plate as it was being served. A mighty three-layered-stacked-pancake, topped with rum meringue, and served with ricotta cheese and maple syrup, it was great to photograph and eat.
Burn Side St Café also offers burgers, sandwiches, desserts, and coffee.
4) Pancake Days
Located in Harajuku, this pancake house is the place for cute-looking pancakes. Offering a mix of sweet and salty pancakes, each dish has a cute smiley face printed on a pancake. The interior of the café is cheery, and is sure to brighten your day. Birthday parties can be held here, though reservations have to be made.
5) Shiawase No Pancake
Shiawase No Pancake literally means “the pancake of happiness”. Popular in Osaka, the Omotesando outlet is currently the only one in Tokyo, though a Kichijoji outlet is set to open in August 2016.
Queues at the Omotesando outlet are rumoured to take up to 3 hours, proof of the popularity of its soufflé pancakes here in Tokyo. The classic Shiawase No Pancake item is served with manuka honey and whipped butter, and takes 20 minutes to be served upon ordering because each pancake is made on the spot. Mains, snow ice dessert, waffles, are available as well.