HATCOFFEE, a cafe located in Tokyo, is owned by Kohei Matsuno, a true artist of 2D and 3D latte art. After creating his art mainly as a freelancer and online, he decided to open his own coffee shop and create order-made, customized latte art available for everyone.
HATCOFFEE – A Café with an Artistic Twist
HATCOFFEE is a small café located on a quiet side street in Asakusa, Tokyo. A display of some of the amazing latte art created by owner Kohei Matsuno gives away the main appeal of this café.
Kohei Matsuno is a self-taught latte artist. He discovered his love for this type of art while working part-time in a coffee shop in Osaka. His pieces soon became famous on Instagram and he started creating them as a hobby and as freelance work for small events.
Kohei Matsuno is also the master of 3D images created from milk foam. In his cafe, he offers both 2D and 3D latte art. While his 2D latte art can be elaborate masterpieces, he prefers keeping the 3D artwork cute and a little simpler.
Cute and simple is also the best way to describe HATCOFFEE itself. Its interior is warm and inviting and it is one of those small shops where one can just sit and chat for hours.
Lasting Memories Recreated in Milk Foam
Kohei Matsuno decided to open a café of his own in 2019. He wanted to give people a chance to request the art they would like him to create and see it come to life right in front of them.
The idea was inspired by constant fan requests he would get when he was displaying his art mainly online.
Picture courtesy of HATCOFFEE
The main attraction on the menu is the Request Latte Art. He can recreate any image of your choice as 2D or 3D latte art. Kohei Matsuno will create a latte art replica of anything or anyone from comic characters and pets to even pictures of the customers themselves.
To order, just pick from the available latte choices and show him a picture of your desired design. Every piece is created right in front of the customer. You order at your table and will be called to the front when it’s your turn.
The Request Latte Art costs 1,200 yen no matter whether it’s 2D or 3D art. This might be a little steep at first glance but one should keep in mind this is the price for an order-made, one-of-a-kind art piece.
If you wish to see cute latte art without a specific design, the menu also includes latte art on hot or iced latte drinks of your choice for only 650 yen. For this option, you cannot select the latte art.
I ordered one each, a 2D latte and a 3D latte art. For the 2D latte, I asked Matsuno-san to recreate a picture of my late cat Fantasia on a simple cafe latte.
He started out by pouring the white foam in a circle, making it cat-shaped, and then quickly the first little details appeared. He works very fast to make sure you can still enjoy a hot cup of coffee after the artwork is done.
While he created my cat’s cute little face in the foam we chatted about her.
Matsuno-san has an amazing eye for small details. He did a great job in rendering my cat’s fluffy fur and big eyes, which were her charm points. He even wrote her name in the foam.
He managed to capture her traits spot on. This was a beautiful piece of art to remember her by and it made me smile when he handed me the cup.
For the 3D latte, I requested a picture of Matchan, MATCHA’s mascot. She was recreated on a cup of seasonal latte, which was a hojicha (roasted green tea) latte at the time I visited.
The 3D art is created in a glass cup which helps the design to stand out more. Even though the 3D art is held simpler, it still has an incredible amount of details. He added smaller balls of foam for her paws and bell.
Once he was happy with the overall shape, he painted her face, collar, and paws with chocolate sauce and red syrup. The shade on her ear was created with coffee foam as the artist thought chocolate was too dark.
Matchan herself seemed very satisfied with the end result. Maybe we could name it Hojichan, Matchan’s sister.
It’s really difficult to get yourself to drink such beautiful art. But once I convinced myself to do so I was actually surprised at how well the picture on the foam kept if you drank carefully. Fantasia’s little cat face was still visible even when there was barely any coffee left in the cup.
The 3D art is more fragile but it still lasted a fair amount of time while drinking.
As for the taste, the beverages do not disappoint. Both the simple cafe latte and the hojicha latte were delicious and flavorful. The cafe latte was unsweetened while the hojicha latte had just the right amount of sweetness.
The hojicha latte was the seasonal latte when we visited. The seasonal beverage changes on a regular basis. Make sure to ask what the current seasonal latte is beforehand, if you are interested in it.
Homemade Food and Sweets
While the latte art is the biggest star of HATCOFFEE, the cafe also prides itself on its homemade food. The menu includes daily curry plates, salad plates, deli plates with either rice or muffins, as well as sweet plates. The dishes are usually priced under 1,000 yen.
All of these plate options can be ordered together with a beverage as a drink set for an additional 200 yen. The beverage menu includes black coffee, black tea, juice, cola, and ginger ale.
A dish and soup can be ordered for an additional 100 yen. The soup set is available during lunch hours from 11:00 until 15:00.
As snacks, they offer daily sweets as well as sweet and savory muffins starting from just 300 yen. These are all handmade as well and the muffins include unusual flavors such as tea or curry.
HATCOFFEE – Delicious Art Created with Love
If you love art and homely cafés with handmade food and sweets, HATCOFFEE is the perfect place to go. No matter if you order a customized latte art or a random one, each piece is unique, one of a kind, and sure to bring a smile to your face.
If you speak Japanese, don’t hesitate to chat with Kohei Matsuno while he creates your latte art. He is not only an amazing artist but also a funny and lovely person. You can truly feel the passion he has for making people smile with his art.
Written by Chiara Mischke (Crystal Japan) for MATCHA – Japan Travel Web Magazine
Original Article Link: https://matcha-jp.com/en/9576