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Beyond the Banana Leaves Swaying in the Breeze is Roguii, a Shop Offering Various Goods, Homemade Bread, Curry, and Lunch Plates
post : 2019.10.31 06:00
A stylish but a comfortable little hideaway to escape the chaos of our daily lives, and where the meals (especially the curry!) are scrumptious. After your feast, you can just sit and rest your chin on your hand and simply enjoy the passing of time. You’ll sense the unique tastes of the operator of the establishment that’s both tasteful and distinct, but never pushy.
All these factors make up a great café, in my opinion, and there happens to be a café just as I described, in Okinawa City.
I had the chance to interview the owner, Hozumi-san. His first comment was, “I run this place without thinking that I run a café.”
I see. He doesn’t run the place with the notion, “I’m going to operate a café,” and that’s likely why this place is so comfortable and homey. I think I’ll stop calling it a café now.
Me: “Your breads are really delicious. Do you bake them all yourself?”
Hozumi-san: “Yes. I guess it wouldn’t make sense to sell something that I bought elsewhere.”
Me: “You’re using local meats and fish in your dishes.”
Hozumi-san: “I personally can’t eat certain meats that I don’t really know much about, and so for the dishes I serve, I select meats that I know are good to eat.”
Me: “The curry was really tasty.”
Hozumi-san: “Yes, the curry is really delicious.”
As you can see, Hozumi-san was really down-to-earth, and that’s probably what makes Roguii such a relaxing place. It’s Hozumi-san’s natural personality that shines throughout the whole place as he prepares the dishes in the kitchen. The establishment all began with him mowing the lawn and weeding the garden of an old, run-down structure that he rented, which once was a housing for the US military personnel on Okinawa. He first started out his business on one side of the building and he lived in the other half. Soon, the shop was doing well and he decided to move so he could expand the layout. Now, all the rooms are available for the customers to choose their seats. Most of the furniture like the tables and chairs are all built by Hozumi-san, but you’ll see dining sets by Jurgen Lehl casually mixed into the presentation.
All the miscellaneous goods that he sells are carefully selected and lovely, like the colorful enamel pots from India and Pakistan, bags printed with drawings by Okinawan artists, handmade dolls, and other wonderful goods. They also have days with live musicians, too. He was right, this shop isn’t just your regular café.
Outside the windows, the plants in the garden sway gracefully in the breeze, and you can see the ocean in the far distance. If you do happen to make a trip out here, once you get back to your everyday life, you’ll probably fondly recall, “That’s right, Okinawa is where Roguii is. I want to go there again.” Roguii awaits you, just beyond the swaying banana leaves.
Address: 2-11-38 Yogi, Okinawa City, Okinawa
Hours: 9:00 to 17:00 on weekdays & 9:00 to 18:00 on weekends
Official Website: http://roguii.hudor.net/
Okinawa CLIP photo writer, Aya Asakura