No, nothing involved indecent exposure in the storage house has happened…yet…
But rather it was so beautiful and relaxing that I did not realize the after-effects till I tried to zip up my pants one day after the trip.
Japan should be titled “Nation of the Sweets.” Every city has their own signature snack, every street you turn to there is some kind of cafe and dessert store with their own unique flavor. Even in smaller cities like Matsumoto, if you are willing to take time to explore the area by foot, you will find some unique tea houses hiding in a corner.
I was on my way to the Matsumoto Castle side of the city when I walked by the Nakamachi Dori Street. I peeked my head into the street, saw some old style houses, and decided it was time for a detour.
What made my eyes brightened up was when I saw the words “茶房.” That usually means they sell traditional Japanese desserts there! (First letter 茶 means tea, 房 means house). Usually tea houses have tatami (straw mat floors), low tables, beautiful garden, and elegant hosts. What a romantic idea for an afternoon tea! …
Without hesitation (and I did not eat lunch yet either), I walked in…
It was as if I have gone back in time and arrived in a room with two cultures intertwined like an artwork. The warm, dark colored wooden floors, the western style tables and chairs, the large floor windows with thick wooden beams supporting the building, and beyond the windows, the Japanese style garden was charmed with greenery of the early spring.
Apparently this was the storage house for a sake brewery called (中町・蔵シック館/ Nakamachi). The building was rebuilt after a fire in the 1800s, and is now a part of the museum next door. The Nakamachi Factory Tea House is famous for their interior design, coffee, tea, and cakes.
Unfortunately, when I was there, the lady told me the cakes were all sold out (cries) ~ I was disappointed not only because I wanted some cake, but because that is the only section in the menu with food photos. Looked like I had to randomly point at something and see what they will bring me….
Apparently I ordered the traditional Japanese dessert set. They served green tea and a small pastry.
My face cringed when I first sipped the green tea, so I quickly stuffed the pastry into my mouth. Like many, I still have a hard time taking in bitter tea. After the tastes balanced out, all my senses are relaxed. I was able to sit back, enjoy the window view, and rest my my legs.
I saw many older couples come to have milk tea and coffee while enjoying each other’s company. Only if the shop had cake left, I would have loved some coffee too! (Sobs)
I thought this was it for a relaxing afternoon at Nakamachi Dori Street, but my guilty adventure apparently did not stop here….
Guilty Meter: Probably gained 1 pound here….. 😄
(..To be continued)
P.S. Guys & Gals, if you come here and they have cake that day, get it with milk tea or coffee….for me please~
Matsumoto City Nakamachi Tea House/松本市中町蔵の会館: 2-9-15 Chuo, Matsumoto, Nagano Prefecture, Japan.
Map from Matsumoto Station (About 10 minute walk):
Open Daily: 9am -5pm (Besides New Year Holidays)