When it comes to food, Kobe isn’t just famous for beef. It has also gained a reputation as the “city of sweets,” which is excellent news for those with a sweet tooth. You can find many chocolate shops, confectioners, patisseries, and bakeries all across the city, selling both western and Japanese goodies. Here is a selection of places worth visiting for either an accompaniment to a cup of coffee or a bag of treats to take away.
As the name might suggest, this is a confectioner with German roots. Carl Juchheim opened the store following his success in Tokyo in 1919. Based in Minatojima in Kobe’s Chuo ward, Juchheim is famous for its Baumkuchen, a German cake that is very popular across Japan. There is also a teahouse on the second floor if you’d like to sit in and savor your dessert purchases over a brew.
Another German establishment well worth a visit, Konigskrone means “king’s crown” in German, and this patisserie sells an array of baked goods fit for a king. Located in Miyukidori in the Chuo ward, the store was opened in 1977 and differs from many other sweet stores in Kobe in that it offers baking classes where you can produce your own desserts.
The chocolatiers at Frantz specialize in chocolates and sweets for special occasions, which makes them a trendy choice for Valentine’s Day and at Christmas. Their beautifully boxed artisan chocolates make the perfect gift, and they seem to have designs to suit all types, including products fashioned into the shape of spanners and monkey wrenches for mechanics with a sweet tooth. They also offer an assortment of other dessert samples in store, such as freeze-dried strawberries dipped in chocolate or matcha.
Opened in 1988, Motomachi’s Gregory Collet is a store-cum-cafe specializing in cakes. It boasts over 20 types of gateaux that can be enjoyed in-store or as a takeaway option. This store puts effort into the visuals with its delicacies, with many offerings appearing too good to eat. Lunch includes savory dishes, including pasta.
Morozoff has many sweet stores across Japan, including six in the Kansai region. The Kobe store, located a couple of minutes from the Sannomiya train station, was opened in 1931 by a Russian immigrant. The store is famous for its fine selection of boxed chocolates that always sell well for Valentine’s Day.
The name of the store is French, but the man behind the creations at L-Avenue is award-winning Japanese chef Shigeo Hirai, who won the World Chocolate Masters in 2009 and then opened this store in the Yamate district in 2012. He serves up a sublime selection of artisan chocolates and pastries, including the delicious L’Hymme – a chocolate mousse cake with pear compote and crème brulee.