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A proper tea room complete with servers in tea maid outfits
Price: 540 yen
Shimano tea room caught my eye while passing through Kawagoe, because it is a modern building among the old and it usually has people coming or going. I decided to check it out today on a shopping trip to Kawagoe and I wasn't disappointed.
The first thing that surprised me is that the servers wear maid outfits, not in any sort of cosplay manner, but as a professional uniform. It has old fashioned wooden table and chairs. The menu has more food on it then I expected and I was able to grab a late and light lunch of sandwiches. Tea is the main bevarage and they have over 10 different types of tea, but you can also get coffee and soft drinks. Given it was a tea room, I ordered the house special "roman blend". The tea came in a pot with a drainer over the cup to catch the leaves when you are pouring. The drainer is genuis; you can stand it up between uses without the sieve part touching the table. On the tray there was a sand timer; when the sand runs out its the best time to pour the tea! The whole experience was very reminiscent of the tea rooms I visited as a child in Dublin. I enjoyed both the tea and the sandwich and I would definitely visit again.
The tea room opens 10 am to 6 pm on weekdays and 9 am to 7 pm on weekends. They are open every day of the week. They have a smoking area which seemed quite well ventilated. There is one toilet with an old pull chain. There are steps in the tea room and the toilet is very narrow so it is not suited to people in wheelchairs. They offer a 10% discount off your bill if you have a Mama and Papas card for Saitama. It is on a few buses routes from Kawagoe station. No parking available. The menu and notices in the tea room are all in Japanese.