We visited the Japan Rail Cafe in December 2016, and had return a few more times ever since!
This place aims to be a one-stop station, where customers can enjoy not only food and drinks (with monthly specials focusing on selected regions in Japan), but also do some quick shopping at the small retail section, as well as obtain travel information and purchase Japan Rail Pass (JR Pass) at the Rail Pass Counter.
It was particularly interesting to revisit, because of the monthly changes (Dec 2016 was on the Tohoku region), and we also enjoyed reading about the various Japan regions in the newsletter, that also served as a menu.
Free WiFi was also available, so we could do some quick browsing on the spot whenever we found something of interest, and wanted to find out more.
We were on our way to Paya Lebar MRT when we spotted this little cafe near the bus stop.
The coffee looks promising, and indeed, the Flat White ($4.20) was strong and smooth! The Matcha Latte ($5.50) could do with a bit more matcha flavour though. For some reason, it felt like drinking warmed milk despite the promising colour.
This was nonetheless, a nice little stop for us before continuing the journey.
In fact, we came here again for a pit stop a few weeks later, this time having a Latte ($4.20) and Hot Chocolate ($4.50). Today’s latte was fragrant, strong and bitter, but just a tad too hot. The hot chocolate was a soothing milky blend that was not overly sweet.
Do check out the wall on how you can order your drinks 🙂
- Location: 60 Paya Lebar Road, Paya Lebar Square #01-71 S(409051)
- Website: blocsinc.com
- Hrs: 8:30am – 10pm (Mon-Fri), 9:30am – 10pm (Sat-Sun)
We chanced upon this part cafe, part stationery shop, that was still opened at night (most cafes in Sydney closed at 4-5pm), and decided to have our after-meal drinks here!
It was a fairly quiet night, and there were a few students studying hard here.
There was a special cake set special for any cakes (usual price A$8) and a drink, so we settled for a Flat White (usual price A$3.50 for regular), Matcha Latte (A$4.50 for regular), and the best-seller Nutella & Oreo Cheesecake (because it looked so cute).
The flat white was bitter and strong. I had a sugar shock when I took the first sip of my matcha latte, and took a few more sips before the matcha bitterness floated up to my taste buds.
The cheesecake in a cup was a good balance of sweet and saltiness. We were pleasantly surprised that it was not very sweet, given its name. And of course, the matcha latte did not taste sweet anymore after eating the cheesecake, haha!
This place also sells a variety of cute stationery near the order counter. Overall, an interesting and cosy cafe to chill out.
- Location: 708 George Street, Haymarket NSW 2000, Australia (Google Map)
- Website: mysweetmemory.com.au
- Directions: Take the train to Central Station or take the Light Rail to Capitol Square and walk along George Street.
- Hrs: 8:30am – 10pm (Mon-Thu), 8:30am – 11pm (Fri), 10am – 11pm (Sat)
Located in a little alley, we decided to have our coffee break here, after searching through Google ratings!
Truth be told, we had wanted to go Brother Baba Budan (higher rating, haha) but it was very crowded and didn’t looked like it’s a place for sit-downs. So we wandered along and suddenly caught sight of the MP signboard when we peered into the little alley..
And so we had, clockwise from top left:
- Matcha Latte (A$5): This was a very smooth cup of matcha latte, not overly sweet, and it had an ending tone of slightly bitter matcha flavour. We liked it!
- Hot Chocolate (A$4): A rich and sweeter chocolate drink compared to what we had at Waves Port Campbell.
- Flat White (A$4): Smooth and milky, not bad at all.
- Mocha (A$4.50): A stronger cup of coffee. My first sip of mocha, so not very sure if it was good or not.
- Blueberry Muffin (A$4.8): We gathered that bagels were definitely more popular than muffins, for our blueberry muffin became a blueberry bagel when served! Haha, maybe we should not have clarified and sticked with the bagel, for the muffin was super sweet! The blueberries were very juicy though.
This was a rather large cafe with nice wall art, and it was not crowded during the afternoon that we were here, so we could chill here till we felt fully recharged!
- Location: 8 Rankins Lane, Melbourne VIC 3000, Australia (Google Map)
- Website: www.facebook.com/manchesterpress
- Directions: Take the (free) tram to Burke Street Mall and walk along Little Burke Street before turning left into the small Rankins Lane.
- Hrs: 7am – 5pm (Mon-Fri), 9am – 5pm (Sat-Sun)
We were looking for coffee after dinner, and had read about this place, but unfortunately the coffee machine was already shut down by the time we reached, around 20 minutes before closing. Hubby had to settle for tea, which turned out to be a rather excellent choice 🙂
- Classico ($7.20 nett): The classic tiramisu was a very well-balanced light treat, with non of the flavours being overpowering. It was so good, we devoured it within minutes!
- Cranberry Sunrise ($5): Surprisingly, this was not as sour as we expected; in fact, it was very refreshing and we loved it!
- Matcha Latte ($5.50): The latte art was so pretty! The drink itself was abit off though; somehow the water and matcha flavour were kinda distinct…
- Location: 6 Eu Tong Sen St, Clarke Quay Central #B1-09 S(059817)
- Website: latelier-tiramisu.com
- Hrs: 12pm – 9pm (Mon-Thu), 12pm – 10pm (Fri-Sat), 12pm – 7pm (Sun)
We were in this area to see our GP (who is very good, but the queue is always super long queue…), and to our horror, the wet market and food centre was closed for renovations! So we had to walk around the area to hunt for food, and were happy to discover this relatively new cafe that was relatively empty 😀
Twenty Grammes has a main branch in North Bridge Road (which we had wanted to try but have not had the chance to), and this AMK branch just opened its doors in Oct 2015!
We chanced upon this cafe that was projecting “Greece” and “come chill” to us… So we came here for a break between our walks in 黒門市場 Kuromon Market and 道頓堀 Dotonbori!
We settled for the Samurai Helmet Pancakes (¥1296 including tax), as well as Cafe Latte (¥378) and Matcha Latte (¥594 each). The latte had very lovely latte art, and the taste was not bad. Hubby was pleased 😀 The matcha latte here was excellent, without the cloying sweetness and with just the right amount of bitterness. The pancakes were soft and fluffy, and there were lots of strawberry slices and granola bits to complement it. As usual, plenty of fresh cream to go along too.
We really like the relaxed feel of this cafe, and spent close to 2 hours here, with hubby just chilling and us girls taking turns to rest and go shop around the nearby area. A good place to recharge before we start attacking 道頓堀 Dotonbori 🙂
- Location: Namba 1-Chome, Chuo-ku, Osaka-shi, Osaka-fu, Japan 大阪府大阪市中央区難波1丁目
- Nearest Station: Namba Station なんば駅
- Direction: It’s just outside Exit 14 of Namba Station
- Website: wwalk.osaka-chikagai.jp/shops/detail.php?shopId=13
- Hrs: 10am – 10pm (Sun-Thu), 10am – 11pm (Fri-Sat)
We travelled to 嵐山 Arashiyama in the morning, to experience the lovely stroll in the bamboo groves. It was an easy walk from the 嵯峨嵐山駅 JR Saga Arashiyama Station, as we basically just followed the crowd. This meant that there was quite a fair number of people attempting to take photos at the more popular spots within the bamboo groves, including 2 Japanese dressed in kimonos, with an entourage of photographer and assistants, and they attracted plenty of attention from all the tourists! Aside from this, it was a rather serene stroll 🙂 As we walked along, there was also a lone vendor selling pretty postcards.
Categories: Coffee/Tea Break, Japan, Kyoto, Lunch, Travel
Tags: Arashiyama, bamboo, bridge, donut, latte, matcha latte, tofu
We were here so many times but they always ran out of mains or waffles!!
So finally, on a fine Saturday morning, we decided to try just one last time before giving up (they can’t possible run out of mains or waffles from the morning right?)…
And this time, we managed to get seats and food 😀
We were glad that we made the effort to come here again (and again, and again…), because the food was so yummy!
In fact, we returned 4 days later for dinner 😛
Categories: Breakfast, Dinner, North
Tags: burger, cafe, chicken, latte, matcha latte, mushroom, pork belly, Thomson V, Upper Thomson, waffle
We kept passing by this cafe whenever we exit the MTR at Sheung Wan. Today was the last time we would be travelling by this station, so we figured that this would be our final stop before leaving Hong Kong island!
18 Grams is a chain of specialty coffee that has branches in various parts of Hong Kong. They brew coffee using Pour Over, Syphon, Aeropress, Cold Brew, Clever Cup, Chemex and french press, as well as the usual Expresso coffees.
I wanted a Matcha Latte (HKD 45), while hubby decided to try an original Shakerato (HKD 45). Ah! What a wonderful balance between the sweetness of the milk, and the bitterness of the matcha… Loved it! 🙂 The cold Shakerato looked innocently pretty but was very intense! Woah! I totally woke up with a tiny sip 😮
- Location: 香港島上環永樂街77號, 77 Wing Lok Street, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong
- Website: www.18grams.com
- Hrs: 8am – 6pm
- Nearest MTR: Sheung Wan 上環