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Wednesday, August 3, 2011


strawberry filled breakfast bread. quite tasty:

today we were heading out to the kichijoji/mitaka area (not far from our shinjuku train station). today was the day we planned to go to the studio ghibli museum! studio ghibli makes a lot of anime (cartoon) children's movies, and we really like them. you've probably seen at least one before! they are very popular. 

but first, we headed to the kichijoji area because we were going to a place called "satou" for lunch! they open at 11am, and we got there at 11:05 and were able to be seated right away. sometimes there is a line out the door because the steak they serve is so good! 

here are a few pics of the area around it:
from the train station looking down

now down, looking up!

walking into the covered arcade area (these types of things are all over japan. covered outdoor "malls". lots of stores/restaurants in them!

pretty storefront sign! 

i LOVED this! i might make my own at home sometime! really creative idea!

this was also a really cute windchime

and here's satou!

when going there, you want to look for the little door to the right. THIS is the actual entrance. you go upstairs to eat.

also, outside, there was this HUGE line to the left of satou. they were all lining up for the bakery next door! must be amazing stuff there!

we ordered the regular beef lunch set (they also have a premium, but you will pay a premium for it!), and it comes with a small salad, white rice, miso soup, pickled vegetables, some sauces for your food, some side veggies with the beef, and of course, the beef!

look at that beef! medium-rare! my favorite!!!

erik also got a beer

watching the chef cook

as we were leaving i tried to get a shot on the stairs. they are STEEP, TALL stairs! hard to see in the photo though...

after that lovely meal, we walked to mitaka (just under a mile away) because that's where the studio ghibli museum is! also, i have decided mitaka is my favorite place in tokyo. it's GORGEOUS. perfect mix of traditional japan, modern japan, and greenery. love it so much.

here we are at the studio ghibli museum!

and here's totoro waiting! too cute. 

the building is really interesting as well. tons of ivy covering it, and cute details. very studio ghibli...

you are not allowed to take photos inside (you can take as many as you'd like from the outside though), but it's seriously such a cool museum. SO many interactive things to play with, and they have a whole section on original artwork/sketches! being very much into art, i loved seeing that. even though this is our second time coming to the studio ghibli museum, it's still amazing to us. this time there was an adult sized cat bus though (last time they had one just for kids)! it was really cool!!! gah, wish i could have gotten a pic of it!!! if you like the movies, you will be blown away by this place. 

here are some more pics that i took on the rooftop!

and of course the straw hat cafe. we didn't eat here this time though because we had just eaten at satou earlier, but their food here is really good! 

last time i got "the fruit sandwich of your dreams" and erik got the tonkatsu sandwich. both amazing. and we also got the coffee there too because they draw a design on it! if you want to read our blog about the studio ghibli museum last time, here is the link:

coincidentally, we saw the museum both on our 6th day of our trips hahaha...

afterwards, we just walked around mitaka a bit. found this nice big open field right next to the studio ghibli museum, and there is a track around it! some people were running, some were exercizing in the grass part (doing tai chi or something?), and some kids were playing on the playground next to it. 

off to the station we go! 

but first we stopped inside a grocery store to pickup some muscat & lychee wine (YUM) and this!

a cocoichi sandwich! how great! erik LOVES cocoichi (a japanese curry chain), so this is literally perfect for him was GOOD!

we then took a train to the nakano station (again, not far), and headed towards the bradway mall which is at the north exit and impossible to miss. you walk through the shopping arcade, and soon you will see this:

inside there were lots of origami cranes hung! obviously had to take a picture of those ;)

there were a ton of stores including this really neat antique one.

i think everything was in glass cases, but we were still too afraid to walk in and look haha...
and here is a cosplay dress shop. soooo pretty. i love them all!

time to head the basement of the shinjuku station there is a "maplies cake" shop and their cakes look AMAZING!

we ordered 3 things and took them home with us (just a 5 min walk to our hotel). and isn't this awesome?! this has happened to us a few times while in japan. for refridgerated things, they will put in a mini ice pack for you! so it's still cold when you get home. love it. 

here are the cakes!
i got this one (which has a crepe on top!)

erik got tiramisu

and we split this raspberry one because it looked really yummy too and couldn't resist it!

they were only $1.35 each, and SOOOOOO delicious. i bet we'll be going back some time!

later on, we went out for some dinner. one thing i SUPER missed about japan (as crazy as it sounds...) was this ITALIAN restaurant called "pronto"

i know, weird right? but they make the BEST PASTA. i was so in love with it. 
last time we were in japan, we only came to pronto for lunch, never dinner. so this was different. they had a different dinner menu, and it wasn't what i was expecing! so, instead of getting pasta (since they didn't list my favorite one for a dinner option) we just got a pizza and garlic bread

it was good, but nothing out of this world. i miss my pasta! but, we'll just go back during lunch sometime ;) 

walking home, we saw some workers doing some construction, and they have light-up traffic cones! i have never seen these before so i took a pic! haha

we're on a normal sleep schedule now though! so YAY! probably going to bed soon-ish, then in the morning we're meeting up with my friend lyle! 


  1. You were only a few train stations down from where I used to live. If you go three more train stations west from Kichijouji, you hit Musashi Koganei, which was my station! I worked in Kichijouji and went to Mitaka and Nakano all the time. I never got to go to the Ghibli museum, though, so it was amazing to see all your pictures. One of my friends went there, though, and thought that the plastic food was real and actually had it up to his mouth before he realised it wasn't real.

  2. Hi Jacqui I'm loving your blog. I followed Sara's blog almost daily I enjoyed it so much. My name is Sue and I'm from Australia. I'm taking my 12 yo daughter to Japan in November for 3 weeks. Her favorite movie was Spirited Away so I know she will enjoy Ghilbi museum too.
    Look forward to following your blog

  3. @jess: ah! yeah! i know where that is! wow, so cool you worked in kichijouji! i love that area (and mitaka too). REALLY nice!!! jealous of you!!! XD

    @sue: thank you for following my blog! i'm glad you like it! you will have THE BEST time in japan! and your right, your daughter will LOVE the studio ghibli museum! :)

  4. OHHHH- you got to go to Satou. That restaurant still makes us drool. The beef. Oh, the beeeeeeef! I am glad you found it, and were seated immediately. Ok I have to ask- did you like Satou or Grill Miyata better? If you say Grill Miyata, we are definitely heading back to Kyoto to try it.

    I totally agree with you about Mitaka. It is so green, peaceful, serene, and beautiful. The walk from the train station to the Ghibli Museum was a lovely walk. We didn’t get to walk around the outdoor grounds much since we were meeting up with my sister, so I’m glad I got to see some of the beautiful gardens through your pictures.

    MAPLIES Cake!!!! That’s about as affordable as it gets in Japan, and they taste fantastic! How did you like the 3 cakes you got?

    You are so funny about Pronto! I remember you loved it in your last blog. What did you order for lunch that was so good (but couldn’t find on the dinner menu)?

  5. haha for your question about satou vs. grill soon as we both put that first bite of beef into our mouths, we both thought, "grill miyata". BUT! they are completely different beefs, so it's hard to compare. but grill miyata definitely wins. satou was still AMAZING though!!! we both still didnt want to eat that last bite! haha...we wanted to keep it forever! it was really, really, good!

    I CANNOT BELIEVE THE PRICES OF MAPLIES CAKE FOR THE WONDERFUL TASTE. we both loved them so much! we'll be going back to get more flavors! hah!

    oh pronto...i was so disappointed with the dinner menu hahaha...what i got last time was just a really simple pasta. marinara sauce and it had chunks of melted mozzarella on it. but the sauce was really just SO GOOD. i really hope they still have it on their lunch menu!

  6. Thank you so much for sharing all the photos! I know it takes a long time and I really appreciate seeing Japan.

    The studio pictures are really pretty. Bummer you couldn't take photos inside! I guess I understand why...

    Drooling over desserts again... lol. They all look so amazing! That Italian restaurant looks really good too.