Metsa Village is Japan’s newest cultural park located in Hanno, Saitama. Encompassing the culture and beliefs of Scandinavia, Metsa Village combines Japan’s love of the Moomins with the history and hygge of Northern Europe. The large, park like area encourages visitors to get outdoors and experience nature in a new light. In addition to the Scandinavian shops and nature, Metsa Village also features a variety of restaurants and cafes, both from Northern Europe and Japan.
Robert’s Coffee is a popular chain throughout Finland. This is their second location in Japan, with their first in Fukuoka. Robert’s Coffee features freshly roasted Scandinavian beans in a variety of espresso and drip coffee beverages. Visitors can experience a part of Finnish coffee culture in a comfortable, homey atmosphere. Coffee is best paired with some of Robert’s Coffee’s famous baked goods, one of the best being the freshly baked cinnamon roll.
Originating from Ebisu, Tokyo, AFURI is the health conscious choice of ramen noodles. AFURI features a light, shio-yuzu ramen topped with fresh noodles and and grilled pork belly. The Metsa Village location does not skimp on quality, they offer the same fresh noodles and soup found in Central Tokyo. The combination of chicken broth and shredded yuzu creates a new and refreshing flavor.
One More Bit
Metsa Village is home to One More Bite’s first physical location. The ice cream store specializes in creamy soft serve served in crispy waffle cones, topped with an array of decorations and desserts. Sweets lovers can choose from cookies, brownies and scones, or all three, to top the ice cream. The menu is simple, options range from a simple vanilla cone to a waffle bowl served with the works.
In Norwegian, Uteplis means “enjoying beer under the sun” and the restaurant Uteplis acts as Metsa Village’s outdoor beer garden. Tokyo’s Spring Valley Brewery is featured as the draft beer option and is conveniently served from a van along the river. Uteplis also serves Northern European inspired cuisine, like meatballs. The meatballs are served in a waffle cone topped with creamy sauce, looking quite similar to ice cream. The van also serves cinnamon flavored desserts, flavored thick cut french fries, as well as a rotating seasonal menu. There is plenty of seating outside facing the lake. Uteplis is perfect for enjoying a leisurely snack in the crisp autumn weather.
Another Finnish import, Biokia, is a berry company specializing in the health properties of the spherical fruit. Metsa Village whips up smoothies made with local fruit and Biokia products, creating a healthy and delicious snack. Biokia acts as both a cafe and store. Visitors can find a vast array of Biokia products, including powdered Finnish blueberries, juices and health supplements.
Metsa Village Market
The Metsa Village Market sells goods made both in Scandinavia and locally in Japan. The large market sells small souvenirs, travel goods, home decorations and imported food from Northern Europe. Saiboku, a fresh meatery from Saitama, sells both packed meat and snacks. The snacks are served in a European style, mixing Japanese and Scandinavian cuisines. The light filled space also houses a cafe, selling coffee and light snacks.