With events cancelled or going online like the the latest edition of Anime Festival Asia, there is little place to go to satisfy your craving for all-things Japanese. Of course flying to Japan is impossible too at the moment.
Enter the new Rilakkuma themed Cafe by Kumoya Cafe. This pop-up cafe will be open for 6 months starting on 29 August 2020. Do note that this is a new Kumoya branch at Orchard Central. Their first cafe, Kumoya Singapore @ 8 Jalan Klapa, is still open but features not Rilakkuma but Bad-Barth-Maru and Gudetama.
For the uninitiated, Rilakkuma is a popular San-X character from Japan which translate loosely to “relaxing bear”. It has struck a chord with the generally hardworking Japanese simply with the idea of “let’s just relax” that is the epitome of the character.
Getting to the Cafe
Located at Orchard Central level 4, finding the place is not difficult at all. At the time of writing, the cafe does not allow reservation and only walk-in is allowed. So be prepared to queue for a period of time to get in.
We queued for about 50 minutes at around 1:30pm on a Thursday afternoon (we are there not as a media invite). Given it is still consider lunch hours when we are there, expect a shorter time during off peak hours like 3-5pm. And be prepared for a longer queue on weekends.
Customers are entitled to a maximum of 1 hour and 30 minutes in the restaurant. And with safe distancing, there are limited seating capacity. On the positive side, the experience overall is better with less people in the cafe. After all this is Rilakkuma – The Relax Cafe isn’t it?
Food-wise the selections are quite complete. From pasta to rice, desserts and drinks, you will be spoilt for choices. However, do not expect the price to be easy on the wallet. Each main is about $25-29. This is the typical pricing of such theme cafe.
We ordered the Chill-out Rilakkuma Yuzu Carbonara ($23.90), Chirpy Kiroiitori Beef Stew Rice ($23.90), Rilakuma Sweet Honey Pancake ($25.90) and a Lycee Momo Iced Tea with Chocolate ($13.90). Each dish is beautifully decorated ready for an Instagram moment. Taste-wise, while it is not something I will keep coming back for, it is fairly decent compared to other theme cafe we have been to.
Beside the cashier counter, there is a corner full of kawaii Rilakkuma merchandise. Be sure to visit it while you are there. If you are a plushies lover, you will be glad to find some rare Rilakkuma plushies on sale there.
With the COVID-19 situation, visiting the cafe is one of the only way to get closer to a holiday experience. We would recommend a visit to the cafe if you are a fan of Rilakkuma.
Rilakkuma – The Relax Cafe
Kumoya @ Orchard Central: 181 Orchard Rd, Singapore 238896, #04-09
Mon-Sun, 11am to 9:30pm