If you have children, you may already be familiar with the Moomins, the characters in a series of books and a comic strip by Finnish illustrator and writer, Tove Jansson. For the rest of us, the Moomins are a family of characters who resemble white hippopotamuses and live in a village called Moominvalley. There have been nine books in all released about the Moomins between 1945-1993, and the characters have been the subject of a TV series, films and even a theme park located in Naantali, Finland.
But their popularity is not limited to Finland. Thanks to the anime TV series broadcast on the Fuji Television Network between 1969-1970, Japan is currently home to three Moomin cafes, 2 in Tokyo and 1 in Fukuoka (Canal City Hakata). One of these popular cafes is located in LaQua, a hot spring resort in Tokyo Dome City. Another café called the Moomin House Café opened up in the Tokyo Skytree on June 17, 2014. All cafes serve food, bakery items and desserts based on the Finnish characters.
The cafes are decorated with images of the Moomins and Moomin dolls are placed throughout. As a matter of fact, if you are dining alone, you can elect to have one of the Moomin plush dolls join you! This seems to be a growing trend in Japan these days as the number of people dining alone seems to be on the rise and restaurants are doing what they can to ease the stigma. If you are dining with a group, do not worry as you too can have a Moomin character seated at your table to share your meal with. There is a gift section which sells original Moomin merchandise as well therefore the cafes literally serve as a restaurant, bakery and gift shop in one.
There are three separate menus at the Moomin Bakery & Café. Patrons can make selections from a Lunch menu (from 11:00 AM – 2:30 PM), a Tea menu (from 2:30 PM – 5:00 PM) and a Dinner menu (from 5:00 PM – closing).
The café is only 3-minutes on foot from the Kourakuen Station on the Tokyo Metro Marunouchi Line. The best time to visit the café is on weekday mornings as weekend tend to be quite busy.
Web page: www.benelic.com/moomin_cafe/tokyo_dome
Moomin House Café: Tokyo Dome City LaQua shop, 1-1-1 Kasuga, Bunkyo, Tokyo
Phone: +81 3 5842 6300