Okinawa Tourism Information:“BlackCatCafé(ShokudoKuroneko)”inShuriBringsSurprisingFoodsandtheWindofMelbourneForYou

“Black Cat Café (Shokudo Kuroneko)” in Shuri Brings Surprising Foods and the Wind of Melbourne For You

post : 2018.05.14 22:00

When I have a whole day off, when I am happy, or when I want to face myself, there is a café that makes me want to go to. The café is called “Black Cat Café,” and it is sited in the residential area of Shuri. 

I wonder when was the first time I came to this so-called “Melbourne Style Café.” I got lost since it is in a tricky place. When I arrived at the cafe finally, I felt very happy. After I climbed up stairs and opened the door, I witnessed a cozy and comfortable atmosphere inside the cafe. 

The view of Naha City can be seen from the top of hill through the window, and East China Sea is visible far away. You can see Shurijo Castle through the other side of window. A big coffee machine, kitchen where can see greenery, and nostalgic tables and chairs that had been used at schools.

Each object received the sunlight through windows and seemed comfortable. Actually, I felt very comfortable when I sat on a seat and being in this café.

The café is run by a married couple. Saki, the chef, worked at cafes and restaurants in Melbourne. Chris is the barista and originally from Melbourne, Australia. 

About 5 kinds of dishes are on the menu including sweets, vegetable dish, egg dish, and meat dish. We can choose the dish depending on how we feel on the day by looking at a menu with no photos and imagining how the dishes look like. 

I get surprise every time when the dishes are served because they are different than I thought in a good way.

Dishes which Saki cooks are beautiful as if they come out of western books. I was moved by the first bite of it, and I had a smile on my face by eating more and more. 

Sour, sweet, and salty tastes are all contained in one dish. Also, texture of each ingredient is crunchy, semi-hard, and soft. Inside of my mouth turned like a party, but each taste was harmonized. That is why it is fun to eat here.

Actually, the dishes with full of surprises are the Melbourne style. Use a variety of ingredients in one dish and put effort into it to bring up its deliciousness. It starts from the preparation, and dressing and sauce are all handmade.

The chef puts so much effort to cook the original dish that cannot be eaten anywhere but here. There is no advertising menu at the café, and the chef changes menu little by little depending on the taste, texture, the way it looks, and dishes she uses. 

That is why I can discover new taste and surprise every time I come to this café. When I looked around the café, I noticed that other customers expect that as well when they come here.

I had a coffee that Chris made after I finished my dish. He chooses coffee beans first, and also does roasting, grinding, and extraction on his own. This is called “third wave of coffee” in Melbourne.

When he gets new coffee beans, he gets some samples, and finds out the best flavor. Also, he changes the way to make coffee by checking the temperature, humidity, and atmospheric pressure to serve the best coffee for customers. 

He smiled and told me that he enjoys the moment to make coffee more than anything else. I felt happy that I had his coffee and kindness of heart at the same time. 

During the summer, it must be good to have a cold brew coffee which was extracted for 6 hours. You can have it as the way it is, or with melt ice, or mix it with water or milk. A cup that looks like a milk bottle seems a bit unique and nostalgic. 

After I finish both dish and coffee and look at the sky through the window, I always feel cheerful. I did not know why at first, but probably it was from the surprise that Saki and Chris did for me. I have to thank them for that.

The length of conversation time and sense of distance with customers are good enough. Saki and Chris send customers out with their nice smiles, and the café is meticulously clean. It is obvious that regular customers are having fun here. 

There are many invisible but good things about “Black Cat Café.”

I do want to fully enjoy the food and atmosphere, so I always come here alone. I always get excited every time I enter the door and imagine the exciting moment that awaits me at this café.

Black Cat Café (Shokudo Kuroneko)
Address: 2-40-1-3F Shuri Akahira-cho, Naha City
Tel: 050-1300-3853
Business Hours: 9:00-17:00 (final order 16:00)
Closed: Tue - Thu
*Original roasted coffee beans are also available at the café.

Okinawa CLIP photo writer Akiko Ono