By Bonson Lam
Stepping out of JR Tamatsukuri station, a log cabin looking cafe called Magatama soon comes into view.
When you walk in, it's like being welcomed to a country cabin. The knotty pine and white stucco walls produce a warm and gentle atmosphere. You'll soon be completely relaxed while enjoying a nice meal on a rustic unadorned wooden table.
Magatama's delicious menu always satisfies the appetite, especially their unique combo lunch sets. In particular, I recommend the Salmon wrap and the combo tacos and vegetable stew. The wrap sandwich tacos are filled with lots of meat,cheese and vegetables and it tastes awesome. Their other combo plates are delicious as well. I always find their gravy and dip sauce so scrumptious. During dinner the tasty fresh pasta is yours for the taking. They also have an extensive drink menu with good roasted coffee and refreshing hard and soft beverages.
The cafe was established in 1998 and during a renovation in 2000 the owner and staff redesigned the interior and handmade their tables and chairs.
Magatama's motto is Fluxus,which means people and interaction, building an international network of artists, composers, and designers, whilst blending artistic media and the various associated disciplines.
The owner's original concept was to run a cafe not only serving meals, but also to provide space for a full spectrum of people who can drop by for intercultural exchange. Magatama has an English menu to welcome foreign customers. I admire the owner for learning braille (self-taught) and translating the menu for visually impaired customers.
This is a well known gathering place for artists and musicians. Magatama has been providing their floor space for art exhibits and monthly live concerts. If you are an artist or a musician why not exhibit your talents here some day? There are no admission fees here, but it's a great place to perform and promote yourself while you gain exposure.
This cafe is also canine friendly. On weekends and holidays, you are welcome to share lunch with your furry friend. While Magatama is not a dog cafe in the sense that it does not serve dog food, it welcomes dog lovers with open arms. Coincidentally my old friend, Elizabeth Oliver, the representative of Animal Refuge Kansai (ARK) was putting up dog photos on the wall when I was there. Magatama also supports ARK.
As Magatama is just 2 minutes from Tamatsukuri station and about 15 minutes walk south of Osaka castle, why not drop in and make new friends?
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I was astounded at the number of Japan-loving foreign tourists that visit Japan each year. I have made friends with many foreign travel writers that have contributed articles for JapanTravel. I find working with JapanTravel most rewarding as I can help travellers see a different Japan outside the box of traditional travel guides. I was raised in Osaka and was an exchange student at the University of Cambridge,UK and later graduated from college in Osaka. I have been active in operating my own study-abroad centre here in Osaka for the past twenty years. I really enjoy introducing unique and lesser known venues to foreign travellers. Have a look and like us on our regional Facebook pages and feel free to contact me whenever you come to Kansai. https://www.facebook.com/JapanTravelOsaka https://www.facebook.com/JapanTravelKyoto Marketing Manger Kansai JapanTravel Tad Ichimiya