The Minions Great Escape Café - Ikebukuro, Tokyo: Dessert Review
We had just made it off the subway, straight from the airport, when I saw it:
A poster advertising a recently opened minions themed pop-up café in the same neighborhood we were staying (Ikebukuro in Tokyo). Yes, Please. I may or may not have nearly gotten lost trying to snap a picture of all the important information.
We arrived the next morning a half an hour before the restaurant opened, and a line was already winding down the street. When the doors to PARCO (the department store) finally opened we were all ushered in through the store. Those of us not in the front waited along the stairs, slowly moving a few feet forward at a time. We mostly checked out the menu to decide what we might want to order.
Best part of the wait was a woman in front of us who had a few month old baby dressed as a minion asleep in its carrier. Cuteness overload. Worth noting, this was one of the few children we actually saw going to the café. So, the only thing that made us stand out was being foreigners.
After an hour and a half wait we were in. Not surprisingly all of the food menu items had meat in them. Being veggie our breakfast/almost lunch meal was going to be coming entirely off the sweets menu. We did see many people around us eating the meals, and the curry looked just as awesome as it does in the picture. Also the couple at a table behind us ordered every item on the drink menu. I think they had the right idea, and seemed to be collecting the coasters that they came with.
In the end we got two desserts: mango pudding and ice cream
For some reason I didn't take a picture of the ice cream on its own, so enjoy my shitty Photoshop job. Unfortunately for us, when we ordered it seemed to be backlogged in the kitchen. We waited about forty minutes for this dessert to come out, well after the mango dessert had been eaten. Ah well, still totally worth it. This was surprisingly delicious and our favorite tasting of the two. My favorite part of it were these sweet soy sauce filled (mochi?) balls on top. The dessert comes with a little cutout minion set to use for your food photos while eating.
The Mango pudding looked like a minion and had BELLO! written in chocolate. It was so cute that it took me a couple of starts before finally digging in to his face, I got a surprise when I did. When I peeled back the pudding top inside was actually a wall of whip cream, an ice cream center and cake at the bottom. Tasty, but a complete sugar bomb. I don't normally start my day with this much sugar, so I felt a bit stretched thin by the time we actually ate real food a couple hours later.
Like most of the desserts both the ice cream and the mango came with some bananas, so I'm sure the minions would have approved.
I think the best part of this dessert was that it came with the cute minion overall bowl. The café had lots of minion decorations and TVs playing clips from the upcoming movie. When you were done eating you could go into a gift shop where they were selling specialty minion products. I managed to make it out of there with just my bowl.
Altogether we spent around $25 (US dollars). Your millage may vary on this, but having never been to a pop-up café before I had a blast. The entire experience was worth doing once. There are currently five of these cafés open across Japan, but they will only be open for a few more weeks. So, if you have the time and want to do something fun and silly I can't recommend it enough.