Small Spaces is a unique café in downtown Fukuoka’s hippest neighbourhood, Daimyo—a hub of independent salons, boutiques, cafés, restaurants, bars and clubs. But on a recommendation I visited Small Spaces, the quiet corner shop in a small street.
With dinner on my mind I headed in, I set out with good intentions of having a hearty meal and a cup of tea. However fate had different plans. As soon as I got in, I read the signs, the smell in the air, the indie hand written menu. I had to have it: macadamia pancakes. If you’re looking for a treat in the city, I recommend this place; their range of pancakes is impressive and very original. However they also have many savoury dishes, like rustic sandwiches, pastas, and chicken. As for that cup of tea… Well, in my defense, Small Spaces offers a daily wine special: if I didn’t drink it today, it might not be there tomorrow. So I had a glass of chilled white wine to go alongside those pancakes. This place isn’t the cheapest but it certainly won’t blow your budget. Expect to spend around ¥600 for a good glass of wine.
This bar is all about being cool. The menu is hand written on brown paper and attached to a clipboard, and there are bare light bulbs hanging from the ceiling, even a wood panelled bathroom. That’s what to expect in Daimyo; this place is authentically cool. On the window outside there are some dishes written in English, and one of the bar staff speaks a little English, but the experience is made a whole lot easier if you have a smattering of Japanese. No worries though, they guys are all smiles and you can watch them create your dishes as they work right behind the bar.
My pancakes were amazing: three fluffy sweet puffs drowned in a custard-like sauce and drizzled with macadamia nuts. They were the perfect treat for after a long day of walking—or in my case petting cats. For my first time in one of the cool Daimyo cafés this was a nice introduction. It was fairly quiet as I went before the evening crowd (tends to arrive around 10 pm). Small Spaces is open till 4 am, and post-midnight it transforms into a very cool bar scene. However, at 7 in the evening it’s great place for a quiet retreat. So if you’re looking to take a dip into Fukuoka’s hip culture this makes a great place to start!