25 Unique Coffee Experiences From Around the World - Tokio & Paris

Various coffee experiences of different authors around the world

18. Coffee from Tokyo.


Coffee is everywhere in Tokyo and unsurprisingly, the big international chains dominate, as well as some Japanese versions. There’s a focus is on the American-style (think syrups and various additives), while the local coffee can also be quite sweet. But there’s now a huge groundswell of cafes serving what Europeans and Australians would consider to be a fairly decent brew – without all the ‘whistles and bells’. The biggest issue though for a coffee lover in Tokyo is the cost. A basic caffe latte or espresso starts at around 500 Yen and can go up quite steeply from there. At Bills (a small chain of cafes run throughout Japan by Australian expat, and now British resident chef Bill Granger) for example, a ‘strong’ caffe latte was an eye-

25 Unique Coffee Experiences From Around the World, Part 1 - eTramping.com

popping 800 Yen. Sadly, I’ve not found a ‘bargain’ coffee experience in Tokyo. If your custom is to have two or three coffees at a sitting and you think you should probably cut down on caffeine, then Tokyo is a great catalyst to change your ways. The rise of European-style coffee has also given the Tokyo cafe industry a boost. Given it’s such a huge city, if you’re looking to sample various styles of coffee within one area, head for Daikanyama which has a cool, villagey vibe. It’s easy (and cheap) to get there on the amazing Tokyo subway and what you save on taxis you can spend on coffee!


There are cafes of all persuasions dotted throughout streets and piazzas as well as lots of bookstores (with English books) and hip boutiques. It’s a fun spot and great for people watching. A final word about smoking. Tokyo has banned smoking on its streets except for designated smoking areas but, in most restaurants, it’s still permitted. If you want to enjoy your coffee in a smoke-free environment (and the weather allows) then sit outside – it’s the opposite of smoking regulations in almost every part of Europe, the US and Australia where the alfresco tables are dominated by the smokers and the clean air is indoors!

Michelle Dunner (aka Greedy Girl) is an avid traveler who hates flying but would go anywhere, any time to eat, drink, be merry and blog about it.


19. Coffee from Paris.

When you like your coffee a particular way, trying to achieve a consistent result around the world can be tricky – communicating your needs can often get ‘lost in translation’. For me, coffee needs to be strong, with just the right amount of milk. In Paris, a request for a strong coffee with milk still seems to be a fairly unusual request. Too many times, I’ve ended up with a bitter and watery result – cafe creme being a fairly weak brew on average. There’s also a significant resistance to getting milk in your coffee after breakfast. Australians are big coffee drinkers and the coffee culture here is well entrenched, particularly in my hometown of Melbourne. While we’re undoubtedly coffee ‘snobs’, no-one raises an eyebrow if you order a caffe latte at 11.30 at night. How you like your coffee is up to you. Coffee making has become an Australian export. Expat Australians can be found behind coffee machines from Stockholm to New York City – and even in Paris. Cafe Coutume, on the rue de Babylone has redefined the Paris coffee experience. A joint Franco-Australian business venture, this is seriously good coffee prepared just the way you want it. No translation issues here – the baristas all seem to speak several languages but, most importantly, get that coffee is a personal experience – and they get it just right./etramping.com