TAKAMURA Wine & Coffee Roasters, Higobashi, Osaka. 

Converted warehouse. Coffee. Wine. Is this heaven? Not quite, but still pretty awesome. About 45 different wines by the glass are available from the Enomatic preservation units which sit on the ground floor of the massive warehouse space. With bottle prices starting at ¥2,000, going all the way up to ¥80,000 (10 mL for ¥1500, 25 mL for ¥3750, 50 mL for ¥7100), there is a wide variety to choose from. Drinking requires you sign up for a members card and pre-loading some yen - just like a ICOCA or SUICA IC card. Be aware that any amount under ¥5000 incurs a fee of ¥500, which is just a bloody rip! Of course, if you don’t fancy a midday drink or two there is a massive selection of good wine, organised by country of origin, available to take home. Be sure to check out the coffee side as well as it is really very good. 

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Interior Bookworm Cafe  (インテリアブックワームカフェ), Higobashi, Osaka. 

Copies of Gourmet Traveller, Donna Hay, Architecture Australia and other well-known Australian magazines decorate the walls of this super kawaii cafe in the Higobashi area of Osaka city. It’s no surprise the owners spent two months travelling around Australia. Of course, if these magazines aren’t your cup of tea, there are also copies of Wallpaper*, BeanScene, Monocle and other artsy fartsy ones available. 

With fresh juices, great coffee and quality bread the place has brunch written all over it. I would imagine their beautiful open top sandwiches would really hit the spot after a night of drinkies. Mind you, after two visits completely sober and not hungover, I can say they were absolutely delicious. 

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Filter (フィルター), Nakanoshima, Osaka. 

This super cute chilled-out cafe offers a single origin coffee which unfortunately changes each month or so. My ristretto was made well and was indeed delicious, but could have been a little more concentrated and syrupy. Having arrived late afternoon, I missed out on their sandwiches, but they did have a small collection of sweets on offer if you’re into that kind of thing. 

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There was one thing in mind while I spent all of yesterday riding from Osaka to Kyoto in the pouring rain. The Tsujiri macha parfait I was going to smash. Of course by “smash” I mean delicately pick it apart, whilst grinning like a little school boy. Tsujiri has the incredible ability to transport you to a magical fantasy land, to make you smile and giggle like a little boy (or girl) on your birthday, to make you truly happy… However shameful and out of place you may feel in a room full of women (98% of the room WILL be women, 1.5% dudes on dates, 0.5% freako dudes needing a pretty girly fix), rest assured in the end it is always worth it.

There was one thing in mind while I spent all of yesterday riding from Osaka to Kyoto in the pouring rain. The Tsujiri macha parfait I was going to smash. Of course by “smash” I mean delicately pick it apart, whilst grinning like a little school boy. Tsujiri has the incredible ability to transport you to a magical fantasy land, to make you smile and giggle like a little boy (or girl) on your birthday, to make you truly happy… However shameful and out of place you may feel in a room full of women (98% of the room WILL be women, 1.5% dudes on dates, 0.5% freako dudes needing a pretty girly fix), rest assured in the end it is always worth it.