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3 Best Places for Breakfast in Kobe: Live Like an Elegant Kobe Local At These Cafes!

3 Best Places for Breakfast in Kobe: Live Like an Elegant Kobe Local At These Cafes!

Date published: 18 March 2020
Last updated: 12 January 2021

Many expats live in Kobe, a city noted for its many fashionable shops having an international feel. At breakfast and brunch time, you can find many patisseries selling delicious bread and many people come from great distances just to buy it. As such, you can find some wonderful breakfasts in Kobe - which in Japanese are simply called “morning”.

In this article, we will introduce three cafes that offer particularly Kobe breakfasts!

Table of Contents
  1. 1. Comme Chinois Boulangerie and Patisserie Cafe: Lots of delicious types of bread from which to choose!
  2. 2. The Round Point Cafe: Popular with foreign workers for its coffee and delicious bread
  3. 3. Kobe Kitano Hotel: Offering the “best breakfast in the world”

1. Comme Chinois Boulangerie and Patisserie Cafe: Lots of delicious types of bread from which to choose!

First let's head to the Comme Chinois Boulangerie and Patisserie Cafe located in the basement of the Sannomiya Building South Wing, just next to Exit 3 of the Sannomiya-Hanadokeimae Station on the Kobe Municipal Subway Kaigan Line.

This is a representative Kobe bakery where people are constantly coming and going lured by its delicious bread.

▲All types of bread can be seen through the windows
▲The broad interior. The shelves and tables near the entrance are overflowing with bread.

The shop stocks about 50 ~ 60 types of bread in a day. There is a wide selection of standard hard breads, breads stuffed with wieners and vegetables, Danish pastries using seasonal fruit such as apples and tangerines, sweets of all types, such as baked cookies and cakes, as well as confiture.

▲The moment you enter the shop you are greeted by a colorful selection of Danish pastries. It looks just like a garden of bread

Comme Chinois first began as a French restaurant in 1983. Mr. Saku Shoji, a French chef, created many original types of bread and it was this rich variety that led to the popularity of the shop

▲ The store opens at 8:00 a.m., but the greatest variety of bread types can be found between 12:00 and 1:00 p.m.

Each season is marked by breads using the fruit of that season. One of the joys of visiting this shop lies in the expectation of discovering something new.

In the back of the shop you can find the Honest Cafe, where you can enjoy a calm breakfast in Kobe. It is open from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and here you can eat the bread and pastries you purchase.

Especially between 8:00 and 11:00 a.m. water and wet towels for your hands are available as a self-service in order to help hold down the price of drinks. This is the perfect place to have breakfast before a day of sightseeing in Kobe.

▲The cafe can seat about 30 people and has a cozy, at-home atmosphere

I ordered two types of the recommended standard croissant. For drinks you have a choice of coffee, black tea, herb tea, or juice and I ordered a hot coffee (486 yen).

▲Two super-popular items! Croissant Sac (right) and Croissant Mon Style (left) *each is 195 yen

The surface of the Croissant Sac is not coated with egg yolk so that even people allergic to eggs can eat it without worry. The bread dough is folded over in only four thick layers which give it a firm texture and the croissant oozes out butter when you bite into it. The dough in the Croissant Mon Style, on the other hand, has been folded over 9 times so each is thin and the texture is light. The taste was so surprisingly light and simple I felt like I could have eaten many more.

One other item I recommend is the Sonna Banana. Mascarpone cheese and banana are wrapped up in a chewy Brie dough, and when warmed, it is a very delicious item for breakfast or brunch in Kobe. It is crisp on the outside and the banana on the inside has a soft, creamy texture, This is really scrumptious!

▲ The Sonna Banana is shown in front (270 yen). The surface is dusted with granola.
▲You can freely use the toaster in the cafe. The croissant can easily burn so it is best to heat it for only about one minute. One to two minutes is good for other types of bread.

The Honest Cafe also has a lunch menu that is served from 11:30 a.m. Please try the casual-style French cuisine by Chef Shoji that includes roast beef and pasta, as well as an assortment of sandwiches such as panini and burgers.

It’s good to keep in mind that popular types of bread quickly sell out, so if there is a type you like, you can call ahead and have them put some aside for you. Before going sightseeing in Kobe, stop by in the morning for breakfast and enjoy freshly baked bread. You are bound to find some that you will like from the wide selection.

  • Boulangerie Comme Chinois
    ブランジェリー コム・シノワ
    • Address Basement of Sannomiya Bldg., 7-1-16 Gokodori, Chuo-ku, Kobe City, Hyogo Prefecture
    • Phone Number 078-242-1506
    • Open: bakery & patisserie 8:00 a.m. ~ 7:00 p.m.
      Honest Cafe 8:00 a.m. ~ 6:00 p.m. (L.O. 5:00 p.m.)
      Closed: Wednesdays and at other times (please visit website for details)

2. The Round Point Cafe: Popular with foreign workers for its coffee and delicious bread

The next shop is just a 1-minute walk from the west exit of the Minato Motomachi Station on the Kobe Municipal Subway Kaigan Line. It is the Round Point Cafe in the area near the Kobe Port Tower.

▲The black and white entrance has a clean feel

Mr. Shuhei Umetani, the owner, said that he wanted to create a cafe like those in foreign countries where the aroma of early morning coffee fills the air. This shop opens at 7:00 a.m. on weekdays and in addition to regulars who come every morning, many foreign expats who work nearby come here for breakfast in Kobe.

▲The owl mascot symbolizes wisdom. The owner said he got the idea for making a place like a foreign salon from talking with customers.

The area in the back of the shop is just like a traditional townhouse.

▲Orders for food and drink are placed at the counter. There are tables at the rear on the first floor and also the second floor.
▲The second floor can seat about 20 people comfortably.

Five types of hot sandwiches are offered on the popular breakfast menu. I tried the Sloppy Joe which was recommended. It has a slightly sweet meat sauce, cheese, onions with just the right sweetness, and ground beef. It is quite delicious and very popular. I gobbled it up in no time.

▲Sloppy Joe (450 yen) seems to be a local dish served in Ohio, USA. It certainly has a unique name.

Other popular items on the breakfast menu are the Egg & Cheese Sandwich (300 yen), Honey Ham Cheese Sandwich (350 yen), Marshmallow Peanut Butter (400 yen), and Mushroom, Bacon, and Cheese (450 yen).

Also popular are baked items such as the homemade scones, the types changed weekly (from 230 yen) and the homemade New York cheesecake (450 yen).

▲The cinnamon rolls (380 yen) are handmade

Mr. Umetani said that his inspiration for his coffee shop came from the more than 100 coffee shops and cafes he visited traveling around dozens of foreign countries. From that experience, he now uses coffee beans from about 9 countries in Africa, South America, and Southeast Asia.

Here is a tip. If you order any type of S-size coffee between 7 and 10 in the morning, such as the popular cafe latte, cafe Americano, or cappuccino, you can get it at the morning breakfast price of just 300 yen. That is about 70 to 90 yen less than the normal price.

▲Latte with a distinctive surface design

Soft background music is played in the shop. “I enjoy listening to records rather than piped in music. I think my large collection of jazz and R&B provide easy listening,” Mr. Umetani remarked.

▲ Several items reflecting his penchant for world travel are tastefully displayed in the shop
▲A coffee mug with the shop logo can be purchased for 1,500 yen.

There are also electrical outlets and WiFi which travelers appreciate. Come to the Round Point Cafe to experience the international atmosphere of Kobe and enjoy a sumptuous breakfast.

    • Address 4-2-7 Sakaemachi-dori, Chuo-ku, Kobe City, Hyogo Prefecture
    • Phone Number 078-599-9474
    • Open: Tuesday ~ Friday 7;00 a.m. ~ 9:00 p.m., Saturdays, Sundays, holidays 10:00 a.m. ~ 9:00 p.m.
      Closed: Mondays

3. Kobe Kitano Hotel: Offering the “best breakfast in the world”

Our final destination is north of the Kobe Sannomiya Station on the Hankyu Hanshin Electric Railway. The Kobe Kitano Hotel sits atop the gently rising Tor Road and offers a luxurious European style breakfast it calls “the best breakfast in the world”.

▲ The Auberge-style Kobe Kitano Hotel is a restaurant with accommodation facilities. It has thirty guest rooms and has a quiet, relaxing atmosphere.

And the reason for boasting to have the world’s best breakfast? That's because the breakfast menu, created by the French culinary heavyweight Bernard Loiseau, was acclaimed by the Small Luxury Hotel Association of France as being "Best in the World".

Mr. Hiroshi Yamaguchi is both the general manager and head chef of the hotel. He previously mastered his French culinary skills under the tutelage of Mr. Loiseau and Mr. Yamaguchi is the only chef to have been officially allowed to recreate the breakfast created by Mr. Loiseau.

Of course, the only place in the world where you can enjoy this breakfast is here. Even if you do not stay at the hotel, if there is a vacancy you can make a reservation (6,500 yen, reservations taken a month in advance, up to four people in a group).

▲Breakfast is served in the hotel’s dining room Igrek. The high ceiling gives the room the spacious feel of a courtyard. When the weather is fine the shades over the skylights are pulled back allowing the interior to be bathed in sunlight.

Now it’s time to enjoy the Kobe Kitano Hotel breakfast!

▲ All this comes at once! (The bread basket in the photo shows a serving for two people)

The course consists of the following: in the back row from the left, different types of bread, fresh confiture, cafe au lait; in the middle, two types of ham, five vegetable juices, three types of butter, prunes, yogurt, Pot-au-feu, soft-boiled egg; and in front, tapioca au lait, and seasonal fruit. This all comes at once! The colorful dishes laid out before me made my heart beat faster! The aroma of the bread and coffee made my mouth water.

Next to the soft-boiled egg is an egg cutter. This is used for removing the top part of the egg shell (photo shows how the egg looks after it has been used).

▲ Place the egg cutter on top of the egg and pump the pole down twice. That slices the top of the shell and removes it
▲The egg is that of a free-range chicken raised in Kita Tamba, Hyogo Prefecture, and has a healthy, rich flavor. I put Tanjo Salt that is made in Toyooka City on the egg.

Normally a fresh salad is not served in a European breakfast. As such, there is no fresh salad in Mr. Loiseau’s menu, however responding to the requests of guests, this breakfast offers “salad you can drink” in the form of fresh vegetable and fruit juices full of enzymes.

▲ I felt energized just looking at this “salad you can drink” full of vitamins. The red juice in the center is made from red cabbage and tomato. Perfect breakfast in Kobe!

Here is the recommended way to eat this breakfast.

The breakfast comes with several types of bread; freshly baked croissant, pain au chocolat, and financier. Lots of butter and the jambon blanc ham are recommended for the hard bread.

▲Of the three types of butter served, tomato, parsley, and plain, I selected the plain. The butter and salty flavor of the ham had a mellow taste. The bread had a pleasing firm texture perfect for the ham and butter.

The fresh confiture made from seasonal fruit and the chestnut flower honey go fabulously well with the yogurt.

▲The sweet honey and confiture are perfect for the slightly bitter yogurt. Great consideration has gone into the compatibility of the ingredients to create original flavors.

The coffee and milk each comes in its own pitcher, so you can either enjoy your coffee black or if you prefer make cafe au lait. The milk comes from the Tajima region of Tamba in norther Hyogo Prefecture and is pasteurized.

▲The letters “BL” are hidden in the design of the hotel’s original tableware. They stand for Bernard Loiseau. That is a nice subtle tribute to the master chef.

The Kobe Kitano Hotel is popular with staying guests who come for the breakfast. Guests who are regulars highly acclaim the breakfast for always being delicious. Mr. Yamaguchi has made a few changes to the breakfast menu created by Bernard Loiseau.

“The basic style remains unchanged. I’ve just taken into consideration requests from guests as well as current culinary trends to use fresh local ingredients rather than ingredients imported from France. If you continue to use always the same ingredients in exactly the same way, it begins to feel old because ingredients and flavors reflect those popular at the time. So, for the menu to always be delicious, from time to time small evolutions are necessary,” said Mr. Yamaguchi.

And that is the secret to the delicious flavor of the “best breakfast in the world”

  • Dining Igrek (Kobe Kitano Hotel)
    ダイニング イグレック(神戸北野ホテル)
    • Address 3-3-20 Yamamoto-dori, Chuo-ku, Kobe City, Hyogo Prefecture
    • Phone Number 050-3177-4658
    • Hours: Breakfast 7:00 a.m. ~ L.O. 10:00 a.m., Lunch 11:30 ~ 2:00 p.m. L.O., Cafe 2:00 p.m. ~ 4:00 p.m., Dinner 5:30 ~ 8:30 L.O.
      * Staying guests are given priority, but reservations will be accepted if there are openings (up to 4 people in a party). * Please telephone for more details
      Closed: always open

I hope you will have an opportunity to try these delicious places serving breakfast in Kobe. The places mentioned above will be happy to welcome you and provide you with a memorable morning meal.

*This information is from the time of this article's publication.
*Prices and options mentioned are subject to change.
*Unless stated otherwise, all prices include tax.

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