With all this isolation that we are currently experiencing in the UK, I am remembering daily our amazing Japan trip from January. With this, I am always thinking too about the places we ventured to and how much I love and miss them. The Pompompurin Cafe in Harajuku is one of them.
This was one of my favourite places that me and Dane ventured to, especially for food. I knew for months that I wanted to visit the Pompompurin Cafe as I have been a huge fan of the cute pudding dog since I was 11, so almost 20 years now… WOW!
The cafe is located in Cute Cube Harakuju, which is on the famous Takeshita Street. It was pretty easily to find with signs telling you where to go. You walk up some stairs to get to the cafe and you’re greeted with yellow and brown colours, an adorable entrance to the cafe itself and of course, images and figures of Pompompurin and his little animal friends.
I have to be honest and say the day we spent in Harajuku was… Strange, which is nothing to do with Harajuku. We arrived in Harajuku and I was so damn excited! However, not long after we arrived I suddenly felt light headed and nautious. Shortly after we bought a crepe I was sick and it sucked. This went on around Takeshita street for about an hour. After plenty of walking, sipping on water and visited some cute animals around Harajuku, I was ready to go and get food from the Pompompurin Cafe.
Unlike some themed cafes in Japan, you didn’t need to book a place to get a seat in the Pompompurin Cafe. You just walked in. I would image that if the cafe was busy you may put your name down on a sheet and wait, but we didn’t have a problem as the cafe was quiet. Like any eating/drinking establishment, you go in, tell the staff how many people will be seated and you’re taken to a seat in the establishment. Simple!
Inside the cafe is everything I imaged and more! I had of course read/seen reviews online about the cafe, but being there in the flesh is just so much better to be honest with you. It’s cream yellow and brown, just like Pompompurin himself, with adorable Pompompurin sofas, artwork on the walls, statues and even cute as fuck music playing. The music that was played (all of 2 tracks on a loop may I add!) was so cute and I managed to find one of them on YouTube, which I have linked above. 😀 The music made me so happy and I think Dane rather enjoyed it too. It was really catchy and we for the remainder of the trip in Japan, we caught ourselves humming the tunes. Even 3 months later, I still find myself humming the songs. 😛
The cafe itself was quiet when we got in there and for the duration of our time. There were two women sitting eating when we arrived and when we left there was a couple sat near to us, so it was very quiet… I expected it to be super busy, but as we went to Harajuku on a Monday (which is said to be the quietest day of the week), this may be why. We didn’t mind either way, it meant we got a decent table, a chance to have a good look around the cafe during our time there and take photos.
One thing I regret is not asking the staff is we could sit on one of the adorable Pompompurin sofas that was in the cafe. The couple who came in not long before we left did this. It would have made for a kawaii photo opportunity!
At the time that we visited the cafe there was actually a collaboration event going on. Hello Mandy (a Sanrio character based off of Mandy Sekiguchi) was collaborating, so we got some special place mats, as well as coasters. There were also some special menu items too, but we weren’t too interested in those choices.
The menu choices were really varied and perfect, however, when you look on the website it states which drinks/dishes are exclusive to any of the three cafes – Harajuku, Umeda or Yokohama.
I had previously taken a look on the website before we flew to Japan so I had a vague idea of what I wanted, however when we sat down and were given the menus I was a bit stuck… I ummed for ages about what to choose and thankfully in the end Dane helped me pick what I went for in the end.
We both went for desserts, as the savoury mains just weren’t for us. Whilst I was in Japan I ate a lot of sweet foods, which isn’t like me at all! I have zero regrets of what I chose to eat and I would happily choose it again.
Alongside our desserts we also ordered some drinks. For about a year the Pompompurin Cafe has brought a separate menu in for bubble tea and as we both love drinking bubble tea, we couldn’t really resist not ordering it to drink.
I went for the matcha milk and Dane went for the strawberry milk. These tasted so damn yummy and on top they have cream, which had hundreds and thousands on (sprinkles to anyone outside the UK) as well a kawaii Pompompurin biscuit! The boba was lovely and soft, I enjoyed it so much.
Also a fun Japan fact, whilst bubble tea has been around for years and has been a hit in the UK for almost 10 years now, it’s something that Japan have only recently started to serve there. There were bubble tea stores everywhere, as well as restaurants and cafes serving it in stores too.
As I mentioned before, we ordered desserts for our food as we both had sweet teeth. Dane went for the Pancake Tower and I went for the Glittery Dream Parfait.
With the Pancake Tower Dane chose he could pay an extra 300 yen to get his own little Pompompurin mug, which he decided to do. We got to see what our mug would look like, as one came with his dessert. The Pancake Tower is a stack of pancakes with fruit on the side, some squirty cream and syrup on the Pompompurin mug. Dane said when it comes down to what the dessert was like he said it was really nice, but it was a tad overwhelming due to all of the pancakes having different fillings and flavours. There was also a “tanginess” that he remembers tasting, but he still doesn’t know where it came from. This was something he didn’t like. As I said however, he did really enjoy it but did comment saying he wouldn’t have it again if we ever ventured back to the cafe.
I still cannot believe I chose the Glittery Dream Parfait. Even back home this isn’t something I would gravitate towards… Parfaits aren’t really my thing and if they are, I would usually share it with Dane or a friend. Spoiler – I didn’t finish it! 😛 The parfait was crazy and I don’t think there wasn’t anything NOT sweet in there. I love the mason jar it came in and just wish this was something you could have had the option to buy. I would have totally used it to drink out of now. Inside the parfait there were different layers, I’ll start from the bottom and go up! At the bottom was a strawberry mousse, next a middle layer mixture of cornflakes, strawberries and blueberries, on top of that there was blue yogurt (from memory I think it was vanilla) which tasted amazing and on top of all that there was some amazing fresh cream, sweeties (marshallow, shorbread biscuits, jelly beans and strawberry Pocky. The final touch was the cream and rainbow coloured sugar which was around the rim of the glass. This was such a gorgeous dessert and I’m glad I chose it for that reason alone. This dessert is actually exclusive to the Harajuku cafe, which is why Dane was so encouraging of me to go for it. This parfait was really yummy and I enjoyed it, however, I did get really full halfway through the middle layer of cornflakes and fruit and had to pass onto Dane to try and finish… Which he didn’t as he was so full from his own dessert.
We really did take our time whilst at the cafe, not that we ever felt like we needed to rush anyway. At some cafes you only get a certain amount of time, however, that wasn’t the case here which I loved. We made sure to take everything in, relax after a busy day around Harajuku and spend the time we had planning our last week in Japan.
I have to be honest here and say, not just me but Dane too, we both took photos of the bathroom. It was gorgeous. It looked more like a bathroom in someone’s home, rather than in a themed cafe. Even the soap dispenser was Pompompurin, which I now want for my own bathroom haha. Also, I know the focus is bad on the second image, but I couldn’t not include it.
When we were done we made sure to take advantage of how quiet it was and took some photos around the cafe, as well as with the cute statue and HUGE plushie of Pompompurin.
I took so many photos with the plushie and the statue, considering it was quiet and I had the chance to!
Of course, we also took advantage of the gift shop and bought some goodies. I was a little disappointed how “little” the gift shop seemed to be. I didn’t expect it to be huge, don’t get me wrong, but the previous three themed cafes we visited seemed to have a lot more.
Even so, we picked up some cute goodies and even managed to grab some exclusive things too, which I’ll show towards the end of this post.
I paid for our food and goodies, as this was my treat and we ventured home.
So, onto the goodies I picked up for us from the gift shop!
Pompompurin Cafe Plush Keychain – I knew I had to have this little plush keychain… Purely because I wanted an exclusive plush for the cafe, but also because I had already bought two like this from the Pokemon Cafe (which you can read all about here). Pompompurin now sits with my Pikachu and Eevee plush keychains from the Pokemon Cafe, because, why not?
Pompompurin Coin Purse – I saw this cute little purse and knew I had to have it. I know for a fact if I hadn’t picked it up, I would have regretted it. I have this in my backpack and use it for wires/headphones but I do want to change that and use it for other things. I don’t think I want to use it as a coin purse, as I won’t want it to get dirty. We’ll see!
Pompompurin Keychains (Pancakes and Heart) – I picked these up so me and Dane had matching keychains. We don’t use them for that purpose as they’re too nice, but we know when we look at them in our cabinet that they resemble our day together in Harajuku and eating at the Pompompurin Cafe. Dane picked up the one of Pompompurin holding the pancake stack ad I picked the one of him holding a heart. Very cute and also very us.
Pompompurin Cafe Mug – This of course is the mug we paid the extra 300 yen for with Dane’s pancake dessert. We don’t use it, but we keep it in our cabinet with our Pokemon Cafe goods so it’s safe. I don’t think I will ever have the heart to use it, but it makes me so happy to see in the cabinet. I honestly love Pompompurin and have done so for long.
Overall, I fell in love with the Pompompurin Cafe. It was by far one of my favourite things about Harajuku, as to be perfectly honest I was disappointed by what Takeshita Street had to offer. It’s known for it’s quirky fashion, but to me it just looked like stuff you could pick up from eBay or Wish… Hence my disappointment. This is just Takeshita Street though… When you venture away from here and to the rest of Harajuku, you discover some amazing places!
As and when me and Dane venture to Japan again, I already know we will revisit the Pompompurin Cafe, whether it be the Harajuku one, or the other two in Umeda or Yokohama.
What did you guys think of the Pompompurin Cafe in Harajuku? Would you venture there yourself for some yummy food and drinks, as well as kawaii custard puppy goodness? Make sure to let me know in the comments!
Until next time, stay safe, take care and HAPPY EASTER! 🙂