The Soothing Midori Coffee

by Riley Zander & Hilda Raina
21st June 2021
Tucked away on the first floor of an unassuming building, Midori Coffee charms visitors, both young and old, with its modern spin on a traditional ‘Kissaten’ or Japanese style tea-room that captivates the wayfarers walking down the street of KH Wahid Hasyim. 

Behind the genesis of Midori Coffee is a fairly practical motive. Nestled right between the long-standing Japanese restaurant Midori and massage parlor ‘Bersih Sehat, Midori Coffee began as a clever conversion of what was previously a waiting area into a coffee shop where good coffee is paired with nostalgic interiors that hints to Japan’s colourful aesthetics, set by the family behind this venture.  

What started as a small family business eventually extended into an unexpected opportunity in 2018. Since its opening, Midori Coffee have welcomed visitors and fellow enthusiasts of Japanese subcultures to enjoy good coffee and good tunes, as well as a chance to admire the family’s private collection of Japanese vintage toys, books, and magazines on display. Not just decorative, visitors are free to pick one up to flick through whilst getting comfortable in one of the Javanese-style rattan chairs and sofas lying around.

Taking a page out of Japanese coffee culture, Midori Coffee was originally designed in reference to a ‘Kissaten’, a Japanese-style tea room that doubles as a coffee shop, where visiting aficionados who take pride in the brewing experience get to appreciate the manual process. Those who have an affinity for coffee would enjoy the satisfying way they made the Vietnam Drip Coffee or their Japanese-style V60 made with Lintong Nihuta beans. However, casual drinkers often favour the sweet Royal Milk Tea, or Bubblegum Cream Soda with pastries on the side.

Adding on to the ambience, the walls are decorated with quirky illustrations and paintings courtesy of visual artist Mahesa Almeida. A modern take to the traditional tea-room, here, visitors are also encouraged to spin some Japanese blues and old-school jazz with records from Laid Back Blues Record Store

One can’t help but feel a wave of nostalgia washing over when giving the arcade machine a playful try. With games like ‘Metal Slug’ and ‘Ninja Commando’, it’s easy to let time slip and end up spending most of one’s day here, especially with Midori restaurant next door and a massage parlour sitting across the way.