On our annual visit to Tokyo this year we decided that we wanted to travel around less and decided to spend 6 days in Tokyo, with Meguro in the southwest offering a reasonably priced hotel. It’s not an area I had been to before so didn’t know what to expect. It turned out to be really convenient with lots of shops, restaurants and other sites within walking distance.
On the second night while out looking for places to eat, this sign on the street caught our eye. It says “Nekoya” which translates as “cat shop” but in this case means a tavern “Izakaya” in Japanese). Now, not everything with a cat on it has anything to do with cats so we were a bit cautious at first but decided that we had nothing to lose and so headed to the basement.
As we entered the building the cat statues and menu drawings made us think that there was definitely a bit of a cat theme going on but were still not sure if that meant there would be cats inside.
As we opened the door and walked in we guessed that there were no actual cats inside but weren’t expecting to find such a treasure trove of everything to do with cats. Every corner of the place was covered in cat related items from cute collections of cat figurines, posters and even bottles of sake. One of the posters features a rework of one of Marc’s favorite anime “Uchū Senkan Yamato – Space Battleship Yamato” changing “Yamato” to “Nyamoto”; “nya” being the Japanese word for “meow”. Although there were no cats in sight there was a wall of photos showing customer’s cats.
My Japanese is a bit rusty so it was a bit difficult to make head or (cat) tails of the menu. I decided to stick with things I already knew which if course included fish and deep fried tofu and pumpkin croquettes. And delicious they were too.
As you would expect all of the plates, serving dishes and condiment pots had a cat theme.
Now a trip to the toilet a Japanese izakaya is normally a very dull affair, and you’re happy if there is a western style toilet. The sight that greeted my eyes at Nekoya was something to behold. The only thing I wold say was that it wasn’t easy to relax on the loo with so many eyes watching!!
If you happen to be in Tokyo and want to visit Nekoya, you can find more details on their Facebook.
When we visited we left them a few gifts to remember us by;
— ねこや (@izakayanekoya) 30 March 2016