JAPAN has long cemented itself as one of the world’s most fascinating coffee cultures.
This may surprise coffee lovers as the East Asian country has always been known for its national beverage, green tea. But the truth of the matter is Japan is among the world’s largest importers of coffee and home to more than a handful of experts skillfully flaunting manual brewing techniques.
In fact, Japan champions a coffee trend that is unique to Japan – “Morning Service” – whereby toast, eggs, or salad are given for free or discounted prices when you order coffee in the morning from selected coffee shops or restaurants in the morning as a nod to business people seeking out breakfast before they go to work.
Today, in response to the demand for a unique coffee experience in Japan, Starbucks opened the Starbucks Reserve Roastery Tokyo, a four-story tribute to premium coffee quality, innovation, and human connection to the public.
With more than 100 unique coffee and tea beverages and merchandise, as well as a menu of artisanal Princi Italian fare for the first time in Japan, it celebrates the Japanese culture of connection and craftsmanship through the first AMU Inspiration Lounge – from the Japanese “amu,” meaning “knit together”– to host community gathering event.
It is also home to Starbucks’ first Specialty Coffee Association certified training location in Japan.
Located in Tokyo’s vibrant and creative neighborhood of Nakameguro, the Roastery’s enchanting design was inspired by the famous cherry blossom trees lining the Meguro River.
The building’s glass walls and terraced floors seamlessly fold into the fabric of the neighborhood, bringing visitors eye-level with the cherry blossoms and the four seasons of the river to reflect the natural beauty and sense of harmony found across Japan.
The exterior was brought to life in collaboration with renowned Japanese architect Kengo Kuma, merging traditional and modern design to deliver a unique and inspired experience across all four floors.
Upon entering the Roastery, customers are greeted by the world’s largest Starbucks Roastery coffee cask, four-stories and over 55 feet of blush-tinted copper adorned with hand-crafted copper cherry blossoms, which changes hues throughout the day in different lights.
The wood-tiled ceiling was inspired by the art of origami, providing a stunning visual experience and the light and airy space carries the lightwood used on the exterior to the inside, giving the experience an enchanting aura.
The coffee journey at the Reserve Roastery Tokyo is an immersive experience and education in coffee and its process – from green bean to cup – which begins at the Main Bar on the first floor. The open floor plan draws customers into the immersive experience, introducing them to the skilled art of roasting, brewing and hand-crafting beverages.
The Reserve Roastery serves the freshest cup of coffee and it is here on the first floor that customers can taste Reserve coffee beverages such as Barrel-Aged Cold Brew. Meanwhile, the Princi bakery serves handcrafted, authentic artisanal Italian fare that is baked fresh in the Roastery throughout the day.
For the first time in Japan, customers can enjoy freshly-baked breads, cornetti, focaccias, pizzas, salads and more.
An airy staircase leads to the second floor, where customers will be transported into the tradition of Japanese tea at the world’s largest Teavana Bar.
Exclusive tea beverages, such as the Pop’n Tea Sakura Jasmine, featuring a vibrant hibiscus and cherry popsicle atop a floral jasmine tea, will delight customers with their charming appearance, Japanese ingredients, and unique flavor combinations, modernizing the tea experience.
On the terraced third floor, Starbucks Japan’s first cocktail bar Arriviamo puts innovation, mixology and cocktail craft on full display.
The two walls of spirits bring together the Arriviamo menu, featuring coffee and tea-inspired cocktails only available at the Tokyo Roastery, including the Nakameguro Espresso Martini made with chestnut liqueur, crème de cacao and espresso, then paired with decadent chocolate from Nakameguro’s “Green Bean to Bar” Brand.
Wine, beer and classic mixology beverages will also be available.
The fourth floor of the Starbucks Reserve Roastery Tokyo is home to AMU Inspiration Lounge, a dedicated space for the community to gather for hosted social impact conversations.
Founded on human connection and passions coming together, this intimate space will serve as a platform to host change-makers and creative thinkers from across Japan.
The Roastery is also home to Japan’s first certified Specialty Coffee Association (SCA) location offering training for coffee professionals.
With more than 37,000 partners who proudly wear the green apron across Japan’s 47 prefectures and 250 at the Roastery itself, Starbucks Japan will amplify coffee craft and innovation by freshly roasting small-batch coffees from around the world every day in Tokyo and introducing new beverages, concepts, and inspiration to all 1,400 stores across Japan.