The main purpose of my trip to Tokyo was my dear friend’s wedding.  When I received an email from her notifying the wedding location and time, I was more than excited, since I knew it meant a wedding during the cherry blossom season.  It just can’t get any whimsical and beautiful than that!

Anyway, the day started with a cup of coffee from Motoya (as the name suggests, it’s a tiny mini van selling coffee) near Omotesando Hills.  In Japan, there are so many cute cafes but they seem to open rather late around 11AM.  So Motoya becomes my go-to morning coffee place during my trip, since it opens at 8AM on weekdays (plus, I refused to get coffee from Starbucks while I was in Tokyo).

After a strong paper cup full of coffee, we proceeded with shopping at Omotesando Hills.  Omotesando Hills is a shopping mall with many interesting shops, but since I was still in my browsing mode, I ended up not getting anything – although, the story changes dramatically as the trip approaches its final days.  After a couple of hours of skimming through shops, we chose Yasai Mei (located on the 3F of Omotesando Hills) for a lunch spot.  We liked the fact that fresh vegetables were used for the window display and the queue outside the entrance.  The wait wasn’t too long and it gave us a chance to peek into the restaurant and see what others were ordering.  As soon as we set down, we were handed with a Japanese menu and was told that they didn’t have an English menu.  Nonetheless, we were able to ask the waitress to bring us the raw vegetable arrangement, which seemed to be the most popular item!  It was a simple platter of raw root vegetable and some leaves served on a bed of ice accompanied with cream/anchovy dipping sauce.  Sounds simple, but the taste and texture of fresh vegetable were absolutely amazing and the sauce had such a depth!  It was definitely not a boring vegetarian dish.  For my main course, I ordered roasted vegetable curry, which was served as a plate of rice topped with beautifully arranged oven roasted vegetable and a gravy bowl of curry with fried yuba (tofu skin) floating around.  The spiciness from the curry and the sweetness of the vegetable complemented each other so nicely.

Yasaiya Mei (やさい家めい): Omotesando Hills 3F, 4-12-10 Jingumae, Shibuya-ku

When we arrived at the hotel, it was around 2:30, which meant one and only thing: a short disco nap before heading to the wedding!  Thought I’d sleep for 30 mins, but when I woke up, I only had 30 mins to get ready and be at the wedding!!!!  We scrambled and blamed my jetlag!  Never gotten ready for a wedding so fast in my life, but miraculously, we were able to get there and see my friend getting wedded!  It was a small but a beautiful one.  Throughout the ceremony, I was able to see how much my friend and her new hubby are in love!  And thanks to both of them, we were served with wonderful food and an after party at an izakaya (Japanese Pub) in Ginza.

Thought the day was perfect, and it couldn’t get any better, but Tokyo didn’t stop surprising me there.  When I was about to head back to the hotel, I saw the very first glimpse of cherry blossoms glittering the dark night sky…  Like I said earlier, can’t get any more whimsical or beautiful than this…