English Tea

A coworker recommended Monter au Plus Patisserie for my next outing, and so when sightseeing had lulled I decided to treat myself to a fancy afternoon. My coworker warned me it would be expensive, and right she was with small cakes starting at $5. After weighing whether the experience was worth the price, I forged inside to order. The patisserie was small but packed.

Immediately upon entering, there is a stand with a piece of paper (which I found out only too late that it is to sign up to be in line). Along the wall of the entrance are people slumped in chairs, some sleeping, while waiting for their name to be called. In front of the chairs is a little section to buy small treats to bring back home or to work, and beyond the treats are tables of people eating their tiny desserts and sipping tea. Behind the tables there are floor to ceiling windows so you can peer in as bakers bake cakes. And on the right are what seems to be an endless cake selection.

Unsure how to proceed, I walk up to the counter to order and a confused Japanese waitress ushered me back to sign the sign in sheet. After realizing my mistake, I was only further embarrassed because I needed to put the Japanese characters of my name but could not remember them, and so in the heat of the moment scribbled down my name in English instead.

Thirty minutes in and still not being seated, I was questioning whether I should have come after all. At the forty minutes mark, the same waitress I had earlier confused came over to bring me to my seat (I assume she didn’t call my name because I had written it in English). Tea was another pricey $6, but because I had already waited so long I thought I might as well go for it and ordered some Earl Grey. It was the best decision I have ever made in my life. Before coming to Japan, I despised green tea, but that is all you can find here. There is Royal Milk tea but it is definitely not the same as a hot cup of black tea. So for months I have been getting used to, and potentially beginning to enjoy, green tea. But having some real black tea was absolutely worth the $6, and honestly I would have likely paid more. Soon after, the cakes arrived. While taste wise, these tiny desserts did not seem worth the $5 price tag, the presentation was clearly exquisite. While I may have been in Japan, it felt more like I was in a fancy café in England, being served a proper cup of tea and chocolate cake.

An otherwise lazy afternoon well spent!