while tokyo’s perfected the juicy, tubby cheeseburger (blacows, brozers), the thin-crust italian pizza (savoy, seirinkan), and even debatably the BBQ (with options like hato’s in nakameguro, white smoke in juban and b&loin in shibuya), there’s one thing that remains perpetually difficult to find here: delicious AND healthy western-style options.
happily, this seems to be changing in recent years for the better – with the growing popularity of acai bowls, green smoothies stands popping up in train stations, and the opening of places like urth caffe in daikanyama and island veggie in hiroo. but it wasn’t until we happened upon sweet, unassuming, new-zealander-owned little Kiwi Kitchen in shirokanedai that we discovered…
ALL THE SALADS AND SANDWICHES
AND ALL OF THE DESSERTS (here we have coconut custard cream bars, “lolly cake” – whatever that is, but inevitably something as quaint and delightful as its name, banana chocolate cake, chocolate fudge cake, carrot cake…)
in the most adorable little setting…
… FOR 1000-SOMETHING YEN FOR A LUNCH SET. ON A WEEKEND. IN TOKYO.
i apologize for yelling. it is an unusual find.
we ended up with the following:
thai red chicken curry, some sort of chickpea-arugula-orangey-sundried-tomato-tasting salad, and a spinach soup, and:
a steak pie, basil and edamame and rice and feta-ish salad, and beautiful little cappucino.
my dining partner (AND LIFE PARTNER) (ahaha… ha *waves to BF*) and i took bites of our respective salads, turned to each other with solemn, reverent eyes as round and saucerlike as the vessels which contained our holy manna, and mumbled some ecstatic and incoherent version of the following:
“best salad of LIFE… best salad in world… ALL of world!”
i will say that i would give the steak pie a miss next time, because it was a little bland for me (the BF liked it though). but the salads and the thai red curry were… best in world. best in life. and certainly the best salads i’ve had in tokyo, where a “salad” is often a sad little bundle of limp greens with some dubious-looking pale cream spattered over it and maybe (if the chef were feeling particularly thrill-seeking that day) a bunch of grated carrots shoved in somewhere.
also, despite being quite full, i could not resist:
the coconut custard cream bar, with a bundle of EXTRA whipped cream on the side (my kind of place). however, i wouldn’t necessarily recommend this one unless you could split it with someone, and both of you really, really enjoy large blocks of thick and jiggling custard cream (which i should’ve known from the name, but somehow thought it would be more mousse-like than a thicker custard). i dutifully polished off the top icing layer and some of the crust, but left most of the custard jiggling ominously on the plate. moushiwakegozaimasen, kiwi kitchen.
they even have an adorable little outdoor seating area for sunny days:
goodbye, new favorite lunch spot in tokyo!!! VE’LL BE BACK!!!
(note: but not on sundays, since they’re not open then. why, kiwi kitchen? you make my heart so full of sad… yet also, of happy.)
details / dokodesuka?
Kiwi Kitchen (map here, 12 minutes from Shirokanedai station, 16 minutes from Hiroo station)
6-16-22 Shirokane, Minato-ku, Tokyo
open: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., every day except sunday
Deliciously healthy acai bowl
Just a 3 minute walk from Hiroo station, Bondi Cafe is an easy breezy place to pop by for a lazy brunch on the weekend. The vibe is very relaxed and chilled out, with a cozy warm wooden feel about it. It’s very family and kids and doggie friendly too – there were a bunch of strollers with babies AND miniature doggies poppin’ out, taking in the sights and sounds of Hiroo’s side streets.
Bondi serves bites which are light and come in dainty Japanese portions. I had a go at their healthy acai bowl, which came with a heapful of crunchy granolas, freshly cut banana and strawberry slices and acai berries slush. It was deliciously refreshing, like having a berry gelato with crunchy twist from the granolas.
Jay had the French Toast, which came with a nicely caramelised crust and a dollop of cream with fresh fruits. It was done Japanese style, dense and moist, like an eggy bread pudding. It was good and not tooth-achingly sahweeet, but not quite my fav as I prefer mine done crisp and fluffylicious!
The fare they dish up at Bondi isn’t anything to go nuts over, but it’s a convenient go-to place for usual brunch pleasers such as pancakes, eggs, sandwiches, and light bites like soups and pastas. Oh, not forgetting a ton of healthy and colourful salad options for those on a health-kick or paying the price of a binge-fest :)
Wherefore art thou? Map here (they have another branch at Yoyogi as well!)
Minato, Tokyo 106-0047, Japan