“Hokusai Sabou” is a café that opened in 2003.
It is located on Hokusai-dori Street in Kamezawa, of Sumida district, which is said to be the birthplace of Edo era (1615-1868) painter Katsushika Hokusai.
Of the four consecutive houses, Hokusai Sabou is the one that has the most eye-catching exterior.
I peek in from outside. It looks almost completely full.
I notice that the outside isn’t very visible from here. I learned later that this was because the owner of the café wanted the customers to be able to have a good time without being disturbed.
As I enter the café, I am immediately struck by how big the room is. Unlike what it seemed like the outside, the ceiling is quite high.
Apparently, what is now the café was the storage part of a story row house from the Edo period. Afterwards it was used as an atelier, and later it was turned into a café.
The owner, who has always had a passion for Japanese sweets, opened the long-dreamt café on Hokusai-dori Street lined with trees. The pleasant and calm neighborhood that didn’t have many high buildings was the perfect location.
Everything is very “Japanese”, from the interior design to the wood style menu.
I was taken to a seat by the counter. After a long time of deliberation, I finally decided on the Hokusai Cream Anmitsu (mitsumame topped with red bean jam and whipped cream).
Unlike many places, Hokusai Sabou does not have a stock of the shiratama (mochi balls), but prepare them carefully after each order.
The interior is filled with a Showa-like atmosphere, with a wooden parquet and a raised tatami-floored seating area.
*Showa: term used to define years from mid 1920s to late 1980s
After about five minutes, my anmitsu arrives on an elegant tray.
I just sat there, admiring the masterpiece. It’s obvious that is has been prepared with careful attention.
To be honest, the quantity is quite small, but every bit is perfectly calculated. It looks beautiful.
I took a bite and was so impressed by the quality! Everything is nice and fresh. The red bean jam, ice cream and dark honey all mix together and create a perfect harmony.
Hokusai Sabou takes pride in serving “homemade sweets using carefully selected ingredients”.
From time to time, I saw the staff pour the agar in a solidifying tray, or start making balls of mochi, after receiving the customers’ orders. Indeed, they do prepare their dishes with close attentiveness.
Hokusai Sabou provides a confortable and relaxed atmosphere where the customers are able to enjoy delicious sweets made with care.
Considering the quality of the desserts using excellent ingredients, the pricings are very reasonable.
|4-8-5, Kamezawa, Sumida-ku, Tokyo|
|5 min walk from Kinshicho station
10 min walk from Ryogoku station