Before Starbucks existed in Japan, there were kissaten coffeehouses. Now there’s the Starbucks kissaten.

It’s never a dull day at Starbucks in Japan, especially now when they’re redesigning their logo and menu items to resemble the good old days of a bygone era.

For a limited time, Starbucks is turning the clock back at their modern coffeehouses, with some clever elements that hark back to a time before the global coffeehouse chain existed in the country, when people frequented kissaten coffeehouses with dark wood interiors and classy vibes.

▼ This new Starbucks logo resembles the signs usually seen outside local kissaten, which had their heyday in the Showa era (1926–1989).

As well as creating an old-school look with their dark brown logo, Starbucks is adding some classic kissaten items to their menu, in the form of coffees, desserts, and sandwiches.

These new offerings are being advertised as “Starbucks Morning” menu items, so we decided to head out and try the range for breakfast, first picking out a Pizza Danish and a slice of French Toast, for 350 yen (US$3.18) and 240 yen, plus tax.

We were torn between the Meat Sauce and Ham and Egg sandwiches, but eventually we decided to go with the Ham and Egg, for 380 yen.

Once everything had been heated up by the staff, we had a pretty mean breakfast platter laid out in front of us.

We started off with the Pizza Danish, which is quite a rare treat in Japan, where Pizza Toast is more common. The danish was delightfully soft and chewy, while the pizza topping was full of flavour, thanks to a winning combination of cheese, bacon, tomato sauce, pepper, and pistachio nuts. 

The Ham and Egg Sandwich was another brilliant choice for breakfast, with the grilled brown bread making it very different to other sandwiches in Japan, which are often made with sweet white bread.

A perfect partner to the sandwich was the Vienna Coffee, which really had us feeling like we’d gone back in time, as this type of drink and sandwich combination is a kissaten mainstay.

▼ To finish, we enjoyed the French Toast, which came in a small but satisfying serving size.

Staff recommend eating the French Toast with a side of whipped cream and a honey drizzle. We skipped the whipped cream, but the honey drizzle added just the right amount of sweetness and freshness to the toast.

Despite being billed as morning items, these menu options are available all day, so you’ll be able to enjoy them for lunch and dinner as well. The only restrictions on your Starbucks kissaten experience is the fact that these offerings will only be available for a limited time, until 18 June.

After that, Starbucks will be returning to the present day, with their mermaid reappearing as the star of the show, alongside a range of summertime drinks to match their new ocean-themed drinkware!

Photos © SoraNews24
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