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Japan: Gudetama Cafe @ HEP FIVE

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Yes, if you’ve read my Japan day 1 travelogue, you’d have saw that I visited the permanent Gudetama cafe at HEP Five, Osaka! OF COURSE I DID. This is probably the FIRST and ONLY permanent Gudetama cafe in Japan as of yet. They do have random pop-ups in different areas of Japan for limited periods of time, but if you’re visiting Japan and you HAVE to pay Gudetama a visit, your best bet would be at HEP Five in Osaka, or Puroland – the Sanrio park in Tokyo!

For those of you who still don’t know what’s the deal with this yellow, orangey slimy thing that everyone’s so crazy over, here’s a quick introduction! Gudetama is one of the newest character from Sanrio, the very same company that created the cat that drives us all mad, Hello Kitty. Gudetama is a direct translation of a lazy egg. Yes, this yellow slimy thing is very unmotivated and lazy, the attributes which we all innately possess and yearn to exhibit them just like Gudetama. Its level of relatable-ness explains its outburst of fame in recent times, he is what we call, our spirit animal food.

I haven’t found any reviews on this permanent space in Japan online, in English at least, so.. ENJOY.

The PlacePhoto 24-12-15, 5 28 17 PMLocated on the 7th floor of HEP Five shopping center, what used to be just a pop-up concept, turned into a permanent space for all of us Gudetama fans last December (2015), due to its massive popularity. There was fortunately no queue at all at the cafe, and the cafe was pretty spacious as well. Pardon the really orangey photo, it looks like that in real life actually. HAHA!

Outside of the cafe
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The preparation in case of crazy queues..

The preparation in case of crazy queues..

Interior

The entire cafe is of course, slathered with yellow wallpaper, and you’d be able to see different poses of Gudetama all around the cafe – on the walls, ornaments, soft toys, and even on the tables. Seriously, a fan’s dream come true! You can’t help but to go around snapping pictures of everything just for keepsake, because I don’t think you’d be able to find so many gudetamas congregated at one space any where else. Okay, maybe my room.

 

You'll be first greeted with this at the entrance, HOW EXCITING!

You’ll be first greeted with this at the entrance, HOW EXCITING!

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To the left of the entrance is the counter

To the left of the entrance is the counter

To the right, are "private" booths, which we sat in because it was more cosy and the gudetama pictures were really adorable there

To the right, are “private” booths, which we sat in because it was more cosy and the gudetama pictures were really adorable there

I tried to take a picture of every nook and cranny of the cafe so that I could bring you guys on a visual tour of what it’s like in the cafe! I even videoed the space down because I thought the pictures might not be able to give an accurate representation of the cafe! Here’s the video:

Further into the cafe

Plushies that I'd love to kidnap home.

Plushies that I’d love to kidnap home.

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YIKES! SO CUTE, and that egg shell seats! We didn't sit here because it was a little too dark for photography!

YIKES! SO CUTE, and that egg shell seats! We didn’t sit here because it was a little too dark for photography!

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Merchandise! Tip: Do buy your gudetama merchandise from the cafe as we found them to be CHEAPER than all the other shops around Japan! Surprise surprise!

Merchandise! Tip: Do buy your gudetama merchandise from the cafe as we found them to be CHEAPER than all the other shops around Japan! Surprise surprise!

This is seriously a happy, happy place to be.

The Menu

The menu has been revamped since its pop-up days, and this is the most updated one to date!

The menu has been revamped since its pop-up days, and this is the most updated one to date!

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We thought the menu was rather limited in its selection of mains, especially. BUT, there’s only so much you could do with eggs… I guess? Haha!

The Food

Of course, our first choice was the Japanese Curry Rice, because it is the cutest dish there. You could even see its shapely butt.

1. Japanese Curry Rice (¥1000 = S$12.30)
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Look at this! HOW CAN ANYONE RESIST ORDERING THIS. A mound of yellow rice on top of the gooey white curry. It may not look exactly appetizing, but the curry was surprisingly pretty flavorful. However, I think in an attempt to shape Gudetama in this dish, the proportion of rice to curry was like 3:1. Quite a tough dish to complete. Photo 24-12-15, 5 49 07 PM
LOOK! It even has a butt! TOO CUTE I CANNOT. Photo 24-12-15, 5 48 52 PM
It’s not exactly worth it for rice and curry to be priced at ¥1000, but for novelty’s sake, I guess.. Haha! It would have been better if there were like chunks of meat within the rice, or in the curry, or even peas might have helped to make the dish more interesting, because this was just curry and rice mouthful after mouthful.

2. Hotdog Bun (¥1100, S$13.50)
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The only Western dish on the menu, and look at the egg yolk! HAHAHA! TOO ADORABLE! This dish was pretty average tasting, and had a really generous serving of potato wedges, which my mum liked a lot. HAHA!Photo 24-12-15, 5 58 18 PM
As you can see from here, the bun actually consists of a sausage and a couple of shrimps. A simple dish, and it will give you some post-meal onion breath!

3. Onigiri + Soup (¥900, S$11)
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So, my mum insisted on getting these onigiri because she said she’s here just to take pictures. SUREEEEE… I’m more than happy to order more! HAHA! This onigiri set comes with a few pieces of chicken karaage, as well as a miso like soup and a gudetama face quail egg. Adorable!Photo 24-12-15, 5 53 41 PM
Unfortunately these onigiri were the worst ones we’ve ever had in Japan. Tasteless mounds of rice, with the equally bland cut out of gudetama. The soup was also lacking in flavors. Wow. This was really bad! For the price, I’d have ordered another dessert if I were you!

4. Mango Pudding with Crepe (¥1100, S$13.50)
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Wow, I just realized how expensive this was. But this was the BEST dish we had at the cafe! Mango pudding with cream, a variety of chopped fruits like banana, strawberry and cherry, with even a scoop of ice cream beneath the really tasty mango pudding! The crepe went perfectly well with the toppings and mango sauce!Photo 24-12-15, 6 29 01 PM
HAHA LOOK AT HIS FACE ONCE MORE. SO STUPID SO CUTE! AHHH I’m in love!

So here's everything we've ordered at the cafe. NO REGRETS.

So here’s everything we’ve ordered at the cafe. NO REGRETS.

And when at gudetama cafe, CAMWHORE. I took so many pictures there, I went crazy. Thank goodness the cafe wasn't exactly crowded and busy !

And when at gudetama cafe, CAMWHORE. I took so many pictures there, I went crazy. Thank goodness the cafe wasn’t exactly crowded and busy !

Closing Remarks

Honestly, don’t expect much from the standards of the food from a character cafe like this one at HEP Five! I guess these cafes are there for the experience and for fans (LIKE ME) to go crazy, and not for you to savor and critique about their quality of food! That said, I hope this review would help you in making your decision in picking your food from the menu if you happen to plan to visit them in the future because we were spoilt for choice, and really wanted to order dishes that were cute (actually all also cute) and yet, not too bad tasting!

We will be back in March later this year and let’s hope that the pop-up at Tokyo Sky Tree (Solamachi) stays till then for me to visit, so that I can share the experience with you guys! Hope you’ve enjoyed reading this little post, and had fun squealing in excitement (like I always do) while looking at the pictures from the cafe! HEHE!

How to get there?
Gudetama Cafe (Osaka), website
HEP FIVE Shopping Center, 7F
5 minutes walk from Hankyu Umeda/JR Osaka Station

Opening hours:
Daily, 11am to 10.30pm (Last order 9.30pm)
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