No. 4 by T.Y. Harbor (Kojimachi)

No. 4 is a bakery and cafe that is run by Tysons & Co., the people behind T.Y. Harbor.  It is a very hip joint that really pulls a lot from the lumberjack hipster style.  My first visit to No. 4 was a little challenging to understand the system as it is both a bakery and a cafe but the people were really friendly and helpful.

No. 4 is a little difficult to find and definitely off the beaten path for me and my friends.  It is a place that often eluded me and I only found out about this area 12 years after I came to Japan.  While I knew the area existed on maps, I never thought of it as a place to visit or of any interest.  For a tourist, there really isn’t anything special about the area but I found it to be a nice peaceful area in the heart of Tokyo that is like a hidden secret.

No. 4 is both a bakery and a cafe.  The second you walk into the building you are in the bakery.  You can grab any breads that you like and have it to go.  If you have ever been to a bakery in Japan you will know the system easily.  If you plan to sit down for a coffee or a beer, you need to be seated first but there are plenty of people on hand to help you.  The cafe area is relatively small.  I was seated in the patio section that was partially sealed to help keep the heat in.  The tables and chairs felt a little cheap but you can’t really expect much more from patio furniture.  It was still a very nice place to chill and relax and I really enjoyed it.

Bakery with the Cafe in the Back

The food at No. 4 is based on vegan treats.  They do have a few meat dishes but if you are a serious carnivore you better look elsewhere.  I ordered the falafel pita and a gobo (burdock) beer.  The beer was a gamble but it was a really good beer as it was flavoured with burdock in just the right way.  It wasn’t too overpowering and not light either.  The falafel pita was really good as well but my biggest pet peeve was that it was deconstructed.  I really don’t enjoy putting my food together but at the same time I can understand why they would do so.  The fillings were plentiful so you could easily put more or less into the pita depending on your own preferences.  Either way it was delicious.

Falafel Pita (Deconstructed)

Falafel Pita (Constructed)

No. 4 is a great place and I really want to go back again.  I would love to stop by with a friend, probably Ru and friends, and just enjoy some nice sweets and a good coffee.  I would probably grab a beer instead, of course, but it is a wonderful place where you can just relax and not worry about being pushed out.  It was also very kid friendly with kids running around all over the place, but not too much inside.

Gobo Beer by T.Y. Harbor