Located just beside one of Tokyo’s most well-known Buddhist temples, Zojo-ji, there is a French café and bakery serving up delicious food. Le Pain Quotidien has two more stores around Tokyo, and over 200 stores worldwide. The food is fresh and tasty, especially the bread and pastries.
Le Pain Quotidien translates to “the daily bread” and was started by Alan Coumont, a Belgian baker, in 1990. Growing up in a culinary family with a passion for baking, he found that the only way to eat bread he was satisfied with was to make it himself. Today, his chain of cafes and bakeries prides itself on high quality and freshly baked bread.
The décor of this outlet is open and simple, and its use of mainly wood for all the furnishing and walls added warmth to the place. There are large windows to allow in plenty of natural sunlight, and I had a nice view of the garden outside from where I was seated.
They have a wide selection of breads, pastries, tartines, cakes, salads and hot food. I decided to order the Fisherman’s Brunch to get a good mix. It came with a croissant, a mini parfait (yogurt, granola, strawberries and blueberries), a soft boiled egg, smoked salmon, shrimp, ricotta cheese, rye read and baguette. It also included a glass of orange juice and a pot of coffee or tea. I was impressed by the freshness of the ingredients. The most outstanding elements were the croissants, bread, and parfait.
Towards lunch time, Le Pain Quotidien started to get busy with many people getting bread and pastries from the front area to take away, even though it was a wet day. The prices here are not cheap, but reasonable for the quality of food they serve. A bonus is that the staff do speak and understand some English.
If you ever crave for the taste of freshly baked bread, Le Pain Quotidien is a place you should stop by. The nearest stations are Shibakoen and Onarimon on the Mita Line, and Daimon on the Asakusa and Oedo Line. You can also check out the other outlets at Tokyo Opera City and Daikanyama.