I’ve just got back from a really fun and delightfully exhausting week in Tokyo for holiday. I lived there for just over 3 years before moving to Singapore in 2011 and usually try to go back a few times a year to visit friends, eat in my favourite places and check out what’s new around the city. One of the places that I visited this time is Janice Wong’s new dessert bar that she opened in April in the new Newoman shopping centre near the new south exit of Shinjuku station. For those of you who don’t know who Janice Wong is, she is a Singaporean pastry chef who was voted Asia’s Best Pastry Chef in 2013 and 2014 and is the owner of the 2am Dessert Bar in Holland Village. Her dessert bar in Tokyo, named after herself, is the first one in Japan and her second restaurant opening outside of Singapore.
The Janice Wong Dessert Bar in Tokyo has an elegant black and white interior similar to the 2am Dessert Bar but a lot brighter and more lively being in the bustling district of Shinjuku. They have seats at the bar counter where you can see the chefs preparing the desserts and also tables available. Reservations are allowed in advance but are not accepted on the day. We went there on a Monday afternoon and luckily there wasn’t anyone else waiting for a table so we only had to wait a short while and were given seats at the counter. It’s probably best to make a reservation though if you’re planning to go at peak times as they don’t have a waiting area and you have to wait outside.
The menu in Janice Wong Dessert Bar has a range of desserts including her signature Cassis Plum, a selection of seasonal desserts and dessert degustations. It also comes with suggested drink pairings or there is a good range of teas, coffees and non-alcoholic cocktails available. Unlike the 2am Dessert Bar they don’t serve any savoury food or afternoon tea.
I decided on the Chocolate Cake Truffle Meringue dessert (¥1800) as I’d not seen this before on the menu in the 2am Dessert Bar and it sounded unusual since it is a combination of chocolate cake, fried potato strings, truffle meringue, coffee dulce cream and yuzu pearls. The dessert was surprisingly very good and the combination of sweet and salty worked really well with splashes of tartness from the yuzu pearls. The chocolate cake was moist and not too sweet, the meringue was also not too sweet with just a hint of truffle flavour, the potato strings were lightly salted and crunchy and the coffee dulce cream had a very mild coffee flavour.
I had a very strong caffe latte (¥700) to go with it and my friend had the same with one of the seasonal desserts the Melon Violet (¥1800) which is a combination of musk melon, almond milk cream, violet meringue and mint ice cream.
Janice Wong Dessert Bar is a nice place to go to for desserts and drinks with friends or even to sit by yourself at the counter and I’d like to go back to try one of the dessert degustation menus with drink pairings. The service is fairly polite although not as polished as it should be. My dessert came out around 5 minutes after my friend’s so she was nearly finished with hers by the time I started mine and also they completely forgot about my coffee order and when I tried to find a server to ask about it, it was a bit hard to catch the attention of one and even though the chef in front of me was aware of this she didn’t help to call someone for me either. I think that although the desserts come up trumps here the service is disappointing in a city where hospitality is everything.
Janice Wong Dessert Bar
Address: Newoman Ekisoto 2F, 4-1-6 Shinjuku, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Opening hours: Daily 11am – 11pm (Last orders: desserts: 10pm, drinks: 10.30pm)
Hope you’ve enjoyed my Janice Wong Dessert Bar review, please feel free to leave a comment below with your own review of the restaurant or if you have any questions! See here for my review of Janice Wong Singapore restaurant and this post for Janice Wong’s 2am Dessert Bar in Singapore.