9 Unique Cafes and Izakaya in Akihabara
Akihabara is mostly known as the center of all aspects of otaku (nerd) culture from anime to video games, and of course there are plenty of establishments marketed toward that crowd. However, it is actually a bustling area with a huge variety of different and interesting places, so you can have a lot of fun, even if otaku culture isn't your thing! Here are 10 unique izakaya and cafes in Akihabara that you are surely going to love, whether you are visiting as a couple, family, or even on your own.
Jan 29 2019 (Dec 01 2019)
1. Gundam Cafe - Akihabara Branch [Akihabara]
As the name of the cafe suggests, Gundam Cafe is a store that is straight from the world of the popular anime, Mobile Suit Gundam. They serve foods and drinks that are based on the robots and characters from the show. Their cafe latte is the popular item here and there are 19 different flavors for you to choose from, including 3 flavors that are exclusive to this location.
In the spaceship-esque interior of the store, there is a huge screen so that you can dine while watching the Gundam anime. Look up and you will find Gundam looking over the place from above!
For food options, they have hamburger, curry and rice, and salad. They also have limited drinks served in a unique glass that you get to take home with you. It would be great souvenir for your friend that is a huge Gundam fan!
2. The Granvania [Akihabara]
At most maid cafes, they only serve light meals, yet here in the Granvania, you can have a substantial lunch or dinner. The signature dish here is their Roasted Beef, which a maid will cut for you.
The cafe has a daily mission, such as eating a large amount of food or finishing a dish within a certain time limit, and if you complete the objective, you get to take a photo with the maid. If you think you are a big eater, or just want a challenge, try the mission!
They serve a wide variety of beer, with around 30 beers from 12 countries from Europe in stock. The place is also recommended for those who don’t really like beer, as they have a lot of cocktails, wine, whiskey, and non-alcoholic beverage as well.
*This place has closed down.
3. Little TGV [Suehirocho]
Little TGV is train-themed izakaya. They serve dishes that look like trains and shinkansen (bullet trains), such as rice balls, omelets, cakes, and more. They have an English menu on hand, so you can order your food worry-free!
One think you're sure to notice is that the seats are made from actual train seats! It is such a great place to spend a time for the train fans, as the place is filled with train related stuff such as the pictures, signs, and model trains.
All the cocktails are original recipes, and the drinks that are designed to mimic the look of certain trains are just as fun to look as they are to drink. Maybe you can even find a drink based on a train you rode during your trip!
4. Dear Stage [Akihabara, Suehirocho]
Dear Stage is a bar with a huge pinkish graffiti, in which you can have a drink while chatting with actual idol singers. A number of idol groups are working here, including Dempagumi. inc, a group that performs both in Japan and the UK.
The food here changes often depending on the theme, but no matter what is on the menu, you can be sure of a great meal made with seasonal ingredients.
Some of the dishes are even cooked by the idols themselves! You can also order a special meal on your birthday. Even if you are not interested in the idols themselves, it would be a great way to experience this Japanese subculture.
5. Anime Song DJ Bar Alchemist [Akihabara]
This is bar is the place to be for lovers of music from anime. It is a bar where you can have a drink while listening to anime songs or watching anime, and you can even request the DJ to play your favorite song.
As it is an anime bar, the store is filled with figurines of popular anime characters. This will let you feel like you are drinking with your favorite anime character. You can even see the staff here cosplay on weekends!
The popular menu item here is called "Food & Nugget", and is a set that consists of an order of chicken nuggets along with your choice from a selection of 400 yen dishes. You can also have a message or picture written on your plate, so it would come in handy if you are looking to surprise your friend.
6. Akiba Base [Akihabara]
Akiba Base is a shooting bar where you can shoot a variety of airsoft guns. There are lessons for beginners, so even if you are not too familiar with shooting, you can still have fun under the guidance of the friendly and helpful staff.
The spacious store is separated into two parts: the Bar Space and the Shooting Space. You can watch other customers shoot from the other room, since it is separated with glass wall. They have a lot of gun magazines to look over as well.
Since it is a bar, they of course have a lot of alcoholic drinks, and the Akiba Base original cocktail is a must-try! Then various food dishes, their unique and eye catching plating, are also recommended.
7. ＠home cafe Main Branch [Akihabara]
One famous thing about Akihabara is its many maid cafes, wherein maids in a cute uniforms act as hostesses and servers. @home cafe is particularly entertaining out of all the maid cafes in Akihabara. You can play games with the maids and even watch them perform in various shows.
The foods they serve match perfectly with the theme of the cafe. You will especially love the parfait that is so cute it almost makes you feel guilty for taking a bite! If you have a taste for sweet things, you should definitely try it.
You can have a unique kind of fun at this place, as the maid will make your a cocktail right in front of you, and they will also write a message on your omelet with ketchup.
8. Square Enix Cafe [Akihabara]
Square Enix Cafe is run by the gaming company Square Enix, which produces famous game titles such as the Final Fantasy series, the Dragon Quest series, and many more. The interior of the cafe is themed based on the popular titles and changes frequently, so every time you visit the place, there will be a new theme!
The foods and drinks change according to the theme, and all the dishes you can have here are only offered during that particular period, making it quite a special meal.
You will certainly appreciate the cute dishes inspired by characters from your favorite games. Don’t forget to take a picture of the meal before you eat! You can buy various merchandise at the cafe as well.
9. Star Light Novel [Suehirocho]
There are many maid cafes in Akihabara, and each comes up with its own distinctive world in order to stand out from the rest. Star Light Novel is a maid cafe with an astronomic theme. The inside is lit up by blue lights, and you will find the milky way if you look up, making it a very romantic place.
They use star-shaped plates and muddlers, and you will find a star symbol (★) instead of the symbol for yen (¥) on your check. Spend a relaxing time here talking with the maids who are “fairies of stars”.
If you order their omelet or cake, the maids will draw something on it with ketchup or chocolate. Have them write your name or the date, and the dish will be unique dish of your own! On your birthday, they will write special messages, so by all means let them know if your birthday is close.
That’s the list! All the cafes serve unique yet delicious foods and drinks and are well worth a visit, even if you don't think otaku culture is for you. Who knows, you might be surprised and discover a whole new side to yourself!
The information in this article is accurate at the time of publication.