'Kissaten (coffee shops): the most prominent feature is that many shops have subdued interiors with antique furniture, giving a mellow and modest atmosphere reminiscent of the Showa days (1926-1989). The food menus also feature Western meals arranged Japanese style like Napolitan Spaghetti.
The history of coffee shops in Japan

The first shop serving coffee in Japan was Kahisakan in 1888. It was located in Ueno, Tokyo, and a monument now stands in its place. With the spread of western culture, new styles of cafes came about one after another, making the cafe businesses popular for casually enjoying food and coffee, and thus there came to be more and more individually owned shops. The Japanese cafe industry centered around these private shops then saw the arrival of large chains of coffee shops. As they were self service, anyone could casually enjoy coffee at cheaper prices, making them well received by various kinds of people, and these chains expanded their shops nationwide. Later, foreign capital-backed chains of cafes launched in Japan, and the number of cafes kept on increasing. There also came along stylish shops such as Hawaiian style cafes and Brooklyn style cafes, while the number of kissaten gradually dwindled in number. Nevertheless in recent years genuine kissatens with their nostalgic atmosphere reminiscent of the Showa days have been quietly gaining popularity, particularly among the younger generation who take pictures and enjoy the traditional food and drinks.

About types of coffee shops

Did you know that there are many types of coffee shops, not just a single one?
Pure coffee shop: A coffee shop where you can enjoy eating and drinking purely without serving alcohol. It would be nice to ask the master who is particular about coffee and tea for recommendations.
Karaoke cafes: Different from normal karaoke, the staff and other customers listen to what you sing, so it is said that there are many elderly customers. The price is often 00 yen per song, and some stores offer alcoholic beverages at night.
Jazz cafes: Mainly jazz records and CDs are played, and customers often come to listen to music. In some cases, the music brought in by the customer will be played.
Manga Kissa: A cafe where you can freely read what you like, with a large number of comics lined up. There is also a private room for one person, so it is easy to relax. You can also charge your smartphone.

What is a night coffee shop?

A night coffee shop that is open even after 21:00. A place where you can relax when you want to take a break after work or after a drinking party. In this way, coffee shops that can be enjoyed at night are called "night cafes". Why don't you enjoy the adult atmosphere at night, which is different from the coffee shop in the daytime?
When the Showa retro atmosphere and menu of the coffee shop is Instagrammable, it spreads on SNS, making it popular among young people.

What is the standard popular menu of the coffee shop?

Neapolitan: The most popular Neapolitan in coffee shops. It is seasoned with tomato sauce and features peppers, bacon, and onions. The nostalgic taste may be the secret that attracts people.
Cream soda: Melon soda topped with ice cream and cherries is the standard, and it's popular because it looks cute. Now, cream sodas that are not the usual green, such as red and blue, are also gaining popularity.
Hotcakes: They range from thick to thin, and are characterized by their square butter and maple syrup on top. Not only is it delicious, but the beauty of its appearance is also one of its major attractions.

Trivia tips

One of the joys of kissaten is being able to enjoy the different breakfasts of each locality. Please search for local coffee shops in the area you are traveling and enjoy their breakfasts.