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NEIGHBORHOOD GUIDE

A guide to local favorites in Nishi-Ogikubo

  • By Yukari Sakamoto
  • Photos by Irwin Wong
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Nishi-Ogikubo
Tokyo
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To sound like a local, use its shortened name, “Nishiogi”: This area is full of cafes and restaurants, some housed in kominka, or open-plan, traditional folk houses. Shoppers love perusing the antique and knickknack shops hoping to discover something unique. While other parts of the metropolis sparkle with newness, Nishiogi has a laid-back, hippie vibe. Tokyoites come here to chill out and explore.

Meet Yukari Sakamoto

Born in Tokyo, raised in Minnesota and drawn back to the Japanese capital to be closer to relatives, Yukari is the author of “Food Sake Tokyo.” She offers tours to local markets and cooking classes out of her home. On her days off, she can be found relaxing in onsen, or hot springs.

Want to get in touch?

mail-solidEmail bytheway@washpost.com
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Nishi-Ogikubo

Re:gendo
This restaurant in a traditional folk house features vegetable sushi or rice balls with seasonal side dishes. There is a curated selection of pantry essentials and artisan tableware in the shop.
Re:gendo, Tokyo-to, Suginami-ku, Shoan 3-38-20
Juha Coffee
This dimly lit jazz kissaten — or Japanese-style coffeehouse — is known for its brews and an (a sweet bean paste) toast, with butter and a chunky azuki, a sweet red bean paste. Many visitors come to pass time immersed in books.
Juha Coffee, Tokyo-to, Suginami-ku, Nishiogi-Minami 2-25-4
Shoan Bunko
On the quiet back streets of a residential area is a cafe gem that’s like visiting a friend who lives in a traditional folk house for tea or lunch. Diners are seated in the living room with an open kitchen.
Shoan Bunko, 3-chōme-12-22 Shōan, Suginami City, Tōkyō-to 167-0054, Japan
Saten Tea
This rustic tea shop that specializes in Japanese tea sits on a quiet corner. The variety of drinks include bright green matcha and an earthy hojicha latte, made from roasted green tea.
Saten Tea, Tokyo-to, Suginami-ku, Shoan 3-25-9
Antiques Jikoh
North of the Nishi-Ogikubo Station is an interesting antiques (and knickknacks) district. Jikoh, with a mishmash of finds, is one of the bigger ones and is in the middle of it all.
Antiques Jikoh, Tokyo-to, Suginami-ku, Nishiogi-Kita 4-8-8
Amy’s Bakeshop
The flavor combinations at Amy’s are hard to resist, like bitter matcha cake studded with black beans or a blue cheese, fig, and salt muffin.
Amy’s Bakeshop, Japan, 〒167-0042 Tokyo, Suginami City, Nishiogikita, 3 Chome−13−18 1F
Yukari Sakamoto
Born in Tokyo, raised in Minnesota and drawn back to the Japanese capital to be closer to relatives, Yukari is the author of “Food Sake Tokyo.” She offers tours to local markets and cooking classes out of her home. On her days off, she can be found relaxing in onsen, or hot springs.
Irwin Wong
Irwin is a contributing photographer to The Washington Post based in the madhouse that is Tokyo. Though an Australian transplant, he has spent his entire photographic career in Japan and specializes in portraiture and documenting subcultures and ancient traditions. His favorite thing about Tokyo is how vast and unknowable it still seems, even after all this time.

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