Friday, April 20, 2007

50. Cafe Review: Cafe Ordinaire

If it wasn't for the sign out front, Cafe Ordinaire would be easy to miss. That is something you don't want to do if you are in the mood for a tasty 'European style' sandwich, served in a relaxed atmosphere. And, they want you to be relaxed. All lunch sets come with an alcoholic drink!

I started out with a shot of Cinzano Rosso on ice (an Italian vermouth). Other choices include Cinzano Dry, sake, or shochu. While you enjoy your drink, they will prepare one of the following for you:

Baguette Sandwiches
*BLT 800 yen
*Tomato and Mozzarella, with fresh basil 800 yen
*Italian prosciutto, Parmesan, and Reggiano 900 yen
*Roast Beef and 'Tona-to' Sauce 900 yen

*Egg and Zucchini bruschetta 900 yen
*Rice Omelet 1000 yen
*'Hayashi' (beef and onions in brown gravy) with rice 1000 yen
*Pasta of the Day 1000 yen (Shrimp and Broccoli the day I was there).

After lunch, you also get a choice of hot or iced tea/coffee.
On my first visit, I tried the prosciutto, parmesan, and reggiano sandwich. Very tasty. On my second visit, I ordered the tomato and mozzarella sandwich. The baguette was lightly toasted and filled with two thick slices of tomato and two thick slices of mozzarella; seasoned with some tasty olive oil. It was served with a lettuce mix covered in oil and vinegar. A great sandwich! I'm definitely going back to have another one of these. I will say that this is not a man's sandwich. It was a perfect size for ladies, however.

Cafe Ordinaire consists of two floors. The 3rd floor contains a long bar counter with 7 stools, two tables for 2, a table for 4, and two tables for 2 along a window overlooking the street. There are a few more tables upstairs, including one coffee table with a two-seater sofa looking out onto a balcony.
The interior of the cafe is cream and white. There are many records and Cd's behind the counter, but jazz piano was playing during my visit. The restaurant is mostly lit by natural light streaming through the window, making for a cozy atmosphere. The counter and wall shelves are lined with Japanese books covered in see-thru white sleeves. Reading material is also provided on a magazine rack. Actually, they advertise that they are a cafe and library.

The dessert menu has a lot of interesting choices, and the staff recommended trying one (but I wasn't hungry enough).

Choices included: Green tea chiffon cake, red wine cheesecake, banana tart, Jasmine tea cheesecake, biscotti, scones, and more. The biscotti were 120 each, all other desserts were between 480 and 550 yen.

Not so ordinary, this is another Shimokita cafe that I recommend.

Hours of Operation: 12:00 - 23:00. Lunch is served from 12:00 - 14:30.

Address: Kitazawa 3-25-1, Shimokitazawa MT Building, 3-4 fl.
Phone: 03-5738-0880