City Coffee Guide: Osaka

Busy shopping streets, food choices aplenty, and the ever-glowing Glico Man are hallmarks of the city of Osaka. This favorite city of global travelers and foodies alike has served as both the capital and the cultural center of Japan at various points in time, and today serves as major cultural and financial hub. It’s no wonder that amidst the hustle and bustle of its busy streets and its ever-moving people, a bevy of excellent specialty coffee shops have popped out and are defining the coffee culture of the city. We take a look at some of the city’s finest cafés, and grab a cup or two to see why exactly they’ve thrived in the nation’s kitchen. 

DAY 1: Shinsaibashi

Lilo Coffee Kissa 

Why: The always bustling Shinsaibashi area is home to a great many stores and restaurants. In the middle of all of this is Lilo Coffee Kissa, an outpost of local favorite Lilo Coffee Roasters. Channeling the traditional kissaten of Japan, Lilo elevates the experience by having their baristas wear traditional Japanese garb, brewing using classy copper V60s and attention-grabbing syphons, and the use of beautiful porcelain cups. The beautiful brick and wood interiors feel like a throwback to a forgotten time from when people didn’t rush through their cups of coffee, and provide the right ambiance to allow you to just sit and enjoy the excellent cup of coffee served to you.

What You Should Order: An interesting thing about visiting the café is their guide on how to order yourself a cup of single origin coffee. Follow the guide and you’ll be sure to have the right cup of filter coffee for you.

Estimated Caffeine Level: 140mg

Lilo Coffee Kissa

542-0085 Osaka, Chuo Ward, 7, 2-7-25 Shinsaibashisuji, Chuo-ku, Osaka

M-S: 11:00AM - 9:00PM 

Espresso Bar millpour 

Why: If while walking down Shinsaibashi you decide you need a pick me up, head on and look for Espresso Bar millpour. This nondescript, blink and you’ll miss it coffee bar may be one of the smallest shops on this list, but don’t let its size fool you. Millpour has gained a small cult following for serving some mean hotdogs (yes, hotdogs), French toast, and of course, cups of great coffee. Seating is limited to a few small benches on the outside, but that’s perfectly fine, because that’s all you really need to enjoy the great coffee and ambiance here.

What You Should Order: Millpour serves some of the best lattes in town, and they pair well with not just their great French toast, but also their hotdogs as well.

Estimated Caffeine Level: 80mg 

Espresso Bar millpour

542-0081 Minamisenba, Chuo-ku, 6-1 1F 105 Cypress Shinsaibashi, Osaka

M-F: 8:00AM - 7:00PM

S-S: 10:00AM - 7:00PM 

DAY 2: Shinmachi/Kitahorie

Granknot Coffee

Why: Granknot Coffee lives in the hip and trendy Kitahorie District where you’re bound to be if you’re on the lookout for great clothing stores and an overall younger vibe. The café seats a fair amount of people, with some seats on the outside for anyone looking to take in clear skies on a good day. The beautiful red La Marzocco GB5 serves as the center of the great looking coffee bar where they also do pour overs.

What You Should Order: A latte will serve you well whether you decide to stick around and kick back, or have it to go and walk around to explore and shop.

Estimated Caffeine Level: 80mg


Words & by Ryan Uy (@thenameisrye)

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