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Sandwich Parlor MATSUMURA is a bakery located near Suitengu Shrine that has remained popular since it opened in 1921. You can enjoy all types of bread and pastries from classic yakisoba (stir-fried noodles) rolls to the owner’s signature custard buns. Don’t miss out on this retro shop!
After departing Tokyo Metro Suitengumae Station from Exit A2, go around the corner to spot an old-fashioned yellow sign. This is Sandwich Parlor MATSUMURA: a beloved bakery nestled in the Ningyocho neighborhood.
Opened in 1921, the bakery is known for its retro ambiance and selection of nearly 100 different types of delicious bread and pastries.
Given MATSUMURA's popularity, it always pops up in searches for “Ningyocho bread” on web search engines. The bakery has also been featured in multiple Japanese media and news outlets.
In the corner of the shop, there's an illustration of a grandma and twin grandpas. They are the bakery’s predecessors who have long since passed away.
Nevertheless, the fourth-generation owner works with his wife, kneading dough and baking bread from the early hours of the morning, to preserve their 90-plus years tradition.
At first glance, MATSUMURA may seem ordinary compared to trendy or fad bakeries.
However, the store attracts locals, office workers, and visitors with its simple approach to bread. The retro light fixture that illuminates the hand-drawn signs and homemade peanut cream are some features that customers find charming.
While no longer in use, antique registers found inside catch the eyes of many customers as they walk in.
The register drawers are engraved with the word “National.” This brand was once used by Panasonic, the Japanese electronics manufacturer. These beautiful antiques help convey the bakery's rich history.
While visiting, our writer overheard the staff having a pleasant conversation with a customer as she ate. This heartwarming scene captured how this shop is truly loved by locals.
The bakery conveniently has a dine-in area. You'll see many customers enjoying their selections with expressions that seem to say, “Ah, this is such a nostalgic taste.”
MATSUMURA has always had yakisoba rolls—stir-fried noodles served in a sliced roll—on their menu. The owner, Mr. Matsumura said, “We don’t know for sure who first made this recipe, but the yakisoba roll is a long-standing product that hasn’t changed since the old days.”
Other items include a variety of bread with delicious fillings such as spaghetti Napolitan, croquettes, fried prawns, and apple salad rolls. The chikuwa (tube-shaped fish cake) bun also looked really good!
Our writer was particularly interested in the Haiga (wheat germ) Croissant Cake. It has a crispy outer shell with a soft and fluffy Nagasaki castella cake on the inside. Inside the castella is homemade red bean jam.
There are layers upon layers of rich texture that give an element of surprise, almost like opening a present. The light, sweet flavor is never overbearing. It’s also available in a chocolate flavor!
We asked the owner about his favorite bread among all the products the bakery sells. After thinking for a while, he answered with a laugh, “I guess it’d be the custard bun.”
The ingredients are simple: milk, eggs, sugar, and flour. However, simple recipes create tasty and familiar flavors. It’s a popular item with the bakery's regulars, too.
In addition to these products, the bakery sells limited-edition bread and pastries, including the Shio Anpan (salted red bean bun) and Green Pea Bread in the summer.
We asked if he planned on developing any new products. Mr. Matsumura replied, “We’re currently understaffed, so I don’t have the time to create new products. But I would like to try something out with our existing ingredients.”
MATSUMURA operated through World War II. When sugar supplies weren’t readily available, the bakery shared the joys and hardships of life with many of its customers.
This beloved shop will also have you thinking about how bread could taste this delicious.
The next time you visit Tokyo’s old downtown neighborhood in Ningyocho, savor the memorable flavors created at this family bakery!
* This article was translated from a traditional Chinese article originally published on September 14, 2018.
In cooperation with Sandwich Parlor MATSUMURA