Organic Food in Japan – Yaoya Cafe, Shibuya
Japanese people love meat. The only time we’ve ever seen them having only vegetables is salads but the salads usually accompany a meat dish. Now, we love meat too, but having it everyday was a little tough and we really missed out vegetables – coming form a culture that is known for cooking vegetables in a LOT of different ways. So, we decided to head out to a place in Shibuya, that offers both vegetables and meat depending on the customer’s choice.
Honestly, this place was a little difficult to find but it was well worth the effort it took us to search. Yaoya Cafe delivered exactly what we wanted – light, fresh food which was also organic.
There was a chandelier that hung inside, just near the entrance, which sort of looked out place to us but we loved the rest of the decor. It was a mix of rustic and classy which was strangely appealing. Even the lighting was perfect – not too bright and not too dull. There are about 4 tables on one side and a bar on the other with a few sets. The cafe can probably seat around 20 people at one time.
Yaoya offers an option of choosing lunch sets if you don’t want to order separately. The lunch sets are also cheaper than ordering food separately so that’s what we went for. There are usually 2 lunch sets – Lunch Set A has a meat or fish main dish and Lunch set B have vegetables and curry. The Japanese curry normally has a beef base and this set might also contain fish as fish is considered vegetarian in Japan, so please confirm before ordering ( if you are a vegetarian). Both sets come with soup, rice and a drink.
We ordered Lunch set A and it was just what we wanted. It included a salad, seasoned mashed pumpkin, a mushroom bacon soup, eggplant pork cutlets, minced chicken and spinach side-dish and brown rice. The salad was light and fresh with a lemon dressing and the pumpkin was seasoned perfectly. It was very creamy and complimented the salad extremely well. The cutlets had a slight buttery flavor and tasted amazing with the rice. The soup had a very subtle flavor and went perfectly with the rest of the meal.
We were also offered a drink after the meal and we ordered ice tea because it was very hot outside. Ice tea in Japan is literally tea with ice. It does not have any sugar. If you want, you can add sweet syrup and a creamer which is offered in all the cafes. At Yaoya, they served tea which tasted slightly like herbs so we recommend not putting in a creamer or sugar.
The bar offers snacks for 500 yen each along with salads for around 1000 yen and drinks – though only in the evenings – from 18:00 to 23 :00. The lunch sets can be ordered between 11:00 to 15:00.
Take-out is possible.
Location and Access :
As we said before, it can be a little difficult to find. It’s a 2-min walk from the west-exit of shibuya station. (You’ll see a ‘Natural Lawson’ when you get out of the exit)
11:00 to 23:00 on weekdays. 18:00 to 23:00 on Saturdays (Last order at 22:00)
Closed on Sundays and Public Holidays
Have you been to an organic, vegan or vegetarian cafe in Japan? Do you have any recommendations? We’d love to hear from you smile