In the past years I’ve been down on Tokyo sakura viewing. I mean when you can have a gorgeous castles in the background, see sakura on a mountaintop viewing regular sakura seems a bit boring? My mind really changed about how pretty Tokyo sakura viewing can be last year. One of my favorite spots was Nakameguro (中目黒). Nakameguro is famous as a destination for sakura because of its beautiful Meguro river that flows through it. The sakura drip over and its truly a gorgeous sight.

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The quintessential Nakameguro Sakura View (TM) and people free!

 

Nakameguro is a sought out place to live in Tokyo because of its hip but laid back vibe. It’s right next to fancy Daikanyama but not as expensive, so a lot of younger people live in the area.

Reasons I like Nakameguro Sakura:

Because it’s a river walkway you may be put off by the concrete of it all and lack of proper Tokyo sakura hanami viewing space, but these two things put off people so it’s much less crowded than places like Ueno Park, Yoyogi Park and Inokashira Park that get tons of drunk rowdy people. And it serves alcohol and lots of places to eat unlike Shinjuku Park. It’s also free unlike Shinjuku Park. If you can get a bench along the river it’s easy to spend several hours gazing and chatting.

 

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Sakura suits the river so well. I do think the Tottori river sakura are more beautiful but for central Tokyo sakura these are hard to beat. I headed out with Nicola and Linda.

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During a weekday the crowds are manageable and we were able to snag seats.

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The sakura do really cover all of Meguro river. Because of the shade and temperature differences theres a wide range when you can see sakura on just this one walkway.

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When we finally got seats this was our view. Pretty special right? The river really makes the crowds feel not so crowded. You can see one of the food trucks parked across the river. There were lots of tasty food options.

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The strawberry champagne was a big seller.

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We also got a bottle of pink sparkling wine to celebrate the season. Instagram worthy!

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Bonus! This super cute poodle we saw while enjoying an impromptu hanami.

 

Visiting Nakameguro for Sakura viewing:

Sakura season is finicky but even with buds or falling off the Nakameguro Matsuri is lovely to see. They do a light up as well for those seeking out a sakura light-up. It’s also an easy walk if you just want to put in an hour to view but not the whole day.

Nakameguro Station is a small station that can get super crowded during sakura season it’s on Tokyo Metro Hibiya and Tokyu Toyoko lines easily accessible through Shibuya. If you’re going at night or during the weekends I suggest getting off at Daikanyama Station of the Tokyu Toyoko Line (8 minute walk) or Ebisu Station on the Yamanote Line (14 minute walk) and walking to Nakameguro both of which are nice walks. Daikanyama has tons of cafes and cute food options in case Nakameguro gets too busy.

 

 

My first Sakura post of the year! I have more planned. I really got to enjoy sakura last year and I unfortunately can’t visit this year so hopefully posts on the blog turning pink will cheer up.  :hearts3:

 

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Sakura Foods in Japan is back with another edition. I love these posts!! It gets me so excited for eating more of them. Pink delicious food it’s a venn diagram of what makes me happy. And a lot of them were eating during traveling within Japan which makes me ultimate happy.

For the past two years other than my time in Japan and moving (to sample Atlanta’s good sweet spots), I’ve spent my life sugar free. I don’t eat fruit other than berries, I only use stevia in baking. That’s it. My eyes love sugar, my body hates it. I do tend to go crazy in Japan, but the rest of the time I abstain.

And for you sugar haters this sakura foods post actually includes some savory sakura items because I’m not picky when it comes to sakura food! Actually some of my favorite sakura foods haven’t been sweet.

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Top pick of most delicious sakura food. This sakura udon handmade at Hanamiyama in Fukushima. There is a light floral pickled taste to it.

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Sakura muffin picked up at Saitama on our way to Matsumoto Castle.sakura-foods-in-japan-ootoya-sakura-parfait

Sakura shows up in unexpected places like Ootoya (previous post on healthy eating in Japan here). And it lists its calories (along with allergies!). That whole thing for 380 calories seemed solid.

sakura-foods-in-japan-ootoya-sakura-parfait-closeupThe real deal wasn’t as cute, but it was tasty and for the Sakura-nesss you got sakura mochi AND a real sakura blossom on it. And if you don’t know this about me yet, I will eat every wa sweet in site. Red beans and matcha? I’m THERE!

So many layers. The sakura cronut at my favorite bakery chain Pompadour. This was my man’s favorite sakura food or at least he ate it most days it was available. :smiley:

Sebastian Bouillet macaron’s from Ikebukuro Seibu. Clockwise: Frambroise, Pina Colada, SAKURA and Shikuwasa (a Japanese citrus).

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Sebastian Bouillet is a confectioner based in Lyon and Tokyo. Makes very interesting macarons if you’d like to branch out from Laduree.

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Sakura fish? Yup it’s common in fancier restaurants. Chaya Macrobiotic in Shinjuku Isetan is one of my favorite healthy places to eat in Tokyo. Since Macrobiotic eating centers on seasonal it’s lovely they added some pickled sakura and other flowers to their fish. Although it’s a fancier place their lunch is only 2,160 yen ($18.00) so it’s not going to break your budget.

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Can’t pass up sakura season without a jaunt to Floresta Donuts. Last year was a cat sakura donut, the year before that was bear and chick. I’m curious what this year will bring. Love Floresta!

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Sendai Sweets went overboard with their Sakura Daifuku. Check out all that multi-mochi levels and fresh cream.

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They were selling strawberry cream daifuku, but who wants strawberry when you can go for sakura?

sakura-foods-in-japan-sendai-sweets-sakura-daifukuNot the best photo, but #trainlife. Another Sakura production by Sendai Sweets (last year’s sakura foods post had Sendai Sweets sakura).

Unexpected sakura! I ordered some matcha from the excellent matcha shop in Sendai called Ocha no Igeta (お茶の井ヶ田) it’s a must stop for me in Sendai, but the sakura tea dessert was delicious and unexpected.

That 3-d sakura *Homer drooling*

 I actually have a few more sakura foods to talk about but I’m holding them back for Sendai and Nagano posts. So stay tuned for the glory of Sendai foods and Nagano foods. This year I’m already planning to eat more of sakura foods and thus far this year it looks like there’s a lot more choices than usual. Franceslovesyou and I have booked some fancy teas with sakura themes this year so you’ll see some fancier sakura foods too. And I’ll probably take up the challenge to eat the First Kitchen sakura burger because I am a fool.

Previous Sakura food posts:

Sakura Foods in Japan (2015)Sweets Forest in Jiyugaoka – Sakura themed desserts | Q-Pot cafe in Harajuku with Sakura tasting | A collection of Sakura foods (2013) | A few Sakura foods (2011)

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