The first cafe to be introduced on this blog is "Bear Pond Espresso", a joint that attracts more and more repeaters since it opened last summer, and which has been getting great reviews on both domestic and international quality press. It is managed by the Tanaka couple who used to live in the U.S. for almost 20 years, so no worries as to be lost in translation in this place.
Mr. Tanaka fell in love with Espresso while living in NY, and after learning the abc of the coffee making from his favorite barista, came back to Japan and opened his first Espresso cafe.
I am neither a coffee aficionado nor do I know anything about it, and would rather drink a good Earl Grey than an Espresso, but still, this place has definitely changed my opinion on the drink . It is actually the first time that I've been wanting to try all the different coffees that a cafe serves. Looking at the other Japanese and foreign customers around me who seem to know about coffee and come back day after day, I guess I'm not the only one thinking this place is good.
As I said, I'm not a coffee guy so I always order the "easier", less bitter variations. I've been repeating on the above Cappuccino (¥350) which I find delicious. As you can see on the picture, the milk is surprisingly foamy, creamy in the mouth, and quite sweet on the taste though I do not add any sugar.
It's not the cheapest place around, but if you're looking for a good New York style espresso or its variants, please definitely try this place. Their recommendation is the "Gibraltar". Click here for the menu!
For your information, the Tanaka's are very nice and chatty so if you have any questions, do not hesitate!
"Bear Pond Espresso" is closed on Tuesdays. Open the rest of the week from 10am to around 7pm.
Setagaya-ku, Kitazawa 2-36-12
click here for a MAP