Kasuyo is the quintessential off-the-beaten-path cafe to which you bring family, friends or dates and impress them with your knowledge of Tokyo. Though it is located within a ten-minute walk from Mejiro station, the cafe is hidden in a minor residential road nobody would ever wonder into unless they knew where they were going or they were lost, like me.
Kasuyo dubs both as a kimono company and a cafe. The building is a beautiful old-style Japanese house complete with a garden and a well. The cafe overlooks the little garden and soft music plays in the background. On the sides of the room you will find kimono accessories (shoes, umbrellas, handbags, etc.) together with cloth samples, ceramic work and clever traditional games. They also specialize in dyed cloth and you can purchase smaller pieces of fabric.
The cafe is relatively small, with only three-four tables. I ordered a Japanese-style jelly dessert with sweet beans and ice cream (500 yen). It was a tad too sweet, but perfect for a hot summer day. My companion settled for a cheesecake with berry compote (500 yen). The drink menu offers traditional matcha together with contemporary teas and coffee. We both got a yuzu (Japanese lemon) infusion that tasted wonderful (500 yen).
Kasuyo is a perfect spot to relax, enjoy a book or indulge in conversation. It feels like you've entered a different world and that you are in an old house in the Japanese countryside, just 15 minutes away from Shinjuku!