An off the beaten track waffle house cafe where you can celebrate and feast on waffles with not only a variety of toppings but waffle flavours as well? Hello!
From savoury to sweet we all know waffles are the all day champion that can be not so breakfast and also not so dessert, but can this menu satisfy your all-day breakfast hunger needs?
Playing Russian Roulette with sweet and salty, we find out what Orange Waffle Cafe is all about!
- Setting & Atmosphere
- Value for Money
SETTING AND ATMOSPHERE
Being situated in the unique neighbourhood of Shimokitazawa known for its alternative vibe and interesting approach to shop fronts, Orange Waffle Cafe is a very cute homestyle cafe with two outdoor porches to sit and dine – a unique feature and a little rare to see in urban Tokyo.
The wooden elements mixed with modern mosaic tiles and worn out concrete flooring makes it a cosy and relaxing spot to sit down after shopping. Although the interior is quite simple, it’s the attention to detail in the small decor choices and serving plates that make it cosy and welcoming in that kitsch zakka way.
The busy time trends to be after 1 pm with the crowds still hanging around until 4 pm for tea which changes the tempo of the cafe from being one moment quiet to the next lively. Nevertheless, if you are in a group with less than four people, you can definitely find a spot to sit during the busy times and not feel like you’ll have to leave soon to make room for the next awaiting party to eat, giving you more time to admire the street view at your own pace.
As you might of guessed, the king of their dishes is the humble waffle. I was surprised that their menu not only offers a variety of toppings, but a variety of waffle flavours as well. I enjoyed looking at the variety of their waffle bases from red velvet, cheddar cheese, chia seeds and more. Unfortunately, there was no option to switch a flavour from a plain to a flavoured waffle should you want to upgrade your meal to something more special and unique.
Tasting both savoury and sweet dishes, the waffles are always light with a crispy outside. If you are familiar with the Belgian waffle’s dense cake quality, the waffles at Orange Waffle Cafe are disappointingly not that kind. Though one could argue that a cake-ish texture and taste could affect the flavour of the savoury food, I argue that it would actually help the taste factor of the dishes as the waffle batter did not taste like anything but a generic bland “carb” taste.
Let’s start with the savoury dish: the slightly misleading “Vegetable” waffle. Topped with a sunny fried egg and bacon slices drizzled with herb cream cheese sauce, the “vegetable” in the title refers to the waffle’s flavour being made of spinach and corn and not for being vegetarian friendly.
Unfortunately, tasting the “spinach” or “corn” in these waffles was non exist and though the spinach waffle was coloured green when cut with a knife, there was no distinct taste or food texture of the base ingredient even in the corn version. The egg and bacon was tasty with the waffle combination, though it felt a bit strange to eat my carottes râpées and salad with my maple syrup covered mixed herb sauce savoury waffle.
My thoughts were that this dish was supposed to be a twist on Eggs Benedict but it kind of missed the mark by doing too much.
For dessert, the “Cinnamon Sugar and Butter” waffle caught my eye but I decided to level up with a side order of vanilla ice cream because, why not right? Sometimes the simple things in life are the best and the thought of cinnamon sugar toast but in waffle form was an enticing idea. Yet, as with the “Vegetable,” the title of this one is also a bit misleading for people who are use to western food culture.
Let’s start off with the cinnamon sugar, a mixture traditionally made of ground cinnamon and granulated sugar sprinkled on dessert for that sweet kick with a bit of crunch as it caramelises from the heat of your warm carb of choice toasted together. At Orange Waffle Cafe, “cinnamon sugar” is simply cinnamon powder dusted on the waffle with icing sugar sprinkled on top tasting more like a decoration to keep the waffle from looking plain than a flavour. The fact that the cinnamon sugar didn’t melt into the waffle even with the butter to give it some sort of flavour element made it super dry eaten alone. The whipped butter was its only saving grace with the vanilla ice cream only being enough for one waffle in the end. Thank god for the jug of syrup so I could sugar overdose this dish to life again.
To summarise, the food at Orange Waffle Cafe will leave one underwhelmed by what could have been potentially a great tasting menu. I personally thought the creativity and idea behind the menu was fantastic with so much potential, but, it was let down by simply not enough finessing in the recipe department.
Having both a half counter service for take-out and semi-full service when eating in, the service at Orange Waffle Cafe was very prompt and the staff are very attentive even when busy, continually checking to fill your water or knowing who hasn’t ordered yet. Though the English level may vary from staff members, the menu has full English translations to aid in ordering should you feel worried about your Japanese communication skills.
Value for Money
Though waffle dishes will not exceed over 1500 yen (add another 320 yen for the drink set) the price point seems a bit overpriced for what you really get to eat. As the dishes are quite light on toppings, I left feeling like I had eaten a light sandwich than a proper waffle meal.
The drink set menu was definitely a deal and is very different from what I usually see offered at most cafes. It boasts quite a large range of a variety of drinks from coffees, teas, original soft drinks, juices and even beer.
Tokyo, Setagaya, 2-26-21 Kitazawa
Monday – Friday: 12pm–7pm
Saturday & Sunday: 11am–8pm