Tokyo’s first Russian-style maid café
Twelve men sit in silence at a new cafe in Tokyo’s Shinjuku district as three women dressed in Russian attire start serving a sour-looking plate of borscht.
The men have each paid \15,000 to attend this soft opening of ItaCafe, which bills itself as the city’s first Russian maid cafe.
The general chit-chat you might expect to hear at a comparable Akihabara venue isn’t present at the soft opening on Oct. 16. Instead, it’s replaced by operatic background music and the shuffling of feet that comes courtesy of the press in attendance, who move around the diners to get a closer look at the chilled beet soup on the table in front of them.
One of the founders of the cafe, Anastasia Reznikova — a cosplayer better known as “Nastyan” — says later that she hopes this experience won’t reflect what a typical day in ItaCafe will be like.
Nevertheless, the press preview keeps her and her fellow employees, Alena Potapova and Ekaterina Kuchevskaia, on their toes as they respond to queries and prepare meals.
But, Reznikova says, they’ve already managed to achieve one of the cafe’s stated goals: prompt Japanese customers to try Russian cuisine.
“Oh, it’s cold,” says one diner, uncrossing his arms after trying the borscht for the first time. He places a few more spoonfuls of the soup into his mouth.
The diner’s interest in the dish reflects a stereotype that is prevalent in domestic television portrayals of Russia, Reznikova says, adding that Japanese cartoons typically mention borscht when the country comes up.
Oxford Dictionary of English (Second Edition Reserved, Oxford University Press)によると、 “inconsequential conversation”と定義されておりました。17世紀ごろから使用されております。