My favorite series ever is Cardcaptor Sakura. It was my first anime, and I remember watching the Kids WB version as a girl younger than Sakura and looking up to her so much. It’s a bit strange now to be so much older than her and still watching her adventures, but all the same I still look up to her.
The best part about the Cardcaptor Sakura going strong in 2018 is the resurrection of collaborations all over Tokyo! In a single day, I hit up THREE different collaborations(!) and totally felt in touch with my youth.
The first one I hit up was purely by accident. I was going to Ikebukuro’s Tokyu Hands for something else, but the base level had put up this little pop-up shop! It had everything from plushes to apparel to kitchen utensils, and if I was a richer girl I would have dropped a big amount of money here. I suppose thankfully, with two other locations already on my itinerary that day, I managed to suppress the need to buy anything here. Barely.
The cutest part was a little photo opportunity with cardboard cutouts of Syaoran and Sakura with a Clear Card background! It even had wand props you could use while standing in Sakura’s magic circle.
My next stop was Shinjuku to check out the PARCO Limited Shop. I had just read on Twitter that they restocked little cookie omiyage boxes, and was eager to grab some before they sold out again. Isn’t the new illustration of Sakura and Syaoran beautiful?! I wasn’t as successful clutching my wallet to my chest at this shop, and got a hoodie with Sakura’s magic circle on the back, a cookie omiyage box that came with a Syaoran card souvenir, a can badge of Sakura and Syaoran, and a minty Sakura lip balm. For spending so much, I also got to play the lottery and won a little postcard of the same beautiful illustration which was a-okay with me!
Next stop: Akihabara for the Animate Cafe x GOOD SMILE Cardcaptor Sakura cafe! I had successfully procured a reservation and was super excited to visit. The entrance was next to a little cosplay shop that was naturally showing off the new school uniforms from the show. The interior was so cute, with large cardboard stands of the cast and the entire Cardcaptor Sakura OST from the original series. It was so nostalgic to hear songs from my youth while eating.
My placemat had Touya (my dream boy tbh) and Yukito on it, and I brought a Kero-chan plush along with me as I was eating alone. Plus, pictures of anime food is way more fun with a plush along for the ride. I got a Suppi-chan soda for ¥500 (around $5) which was actually a decent price! So often collaboration sodas go into the $7-8 range without being any larger, and this one tasted great.
For lunch, I got Sakura’s potato gratin for ¥920 (around $9). It was absolutely excellent! It may contend for the best dish I’ve ever had at an anime cafe. It was layers of potato, noodles, cheese, and was perfectly filling. On the side came a small salad which was a welcome addition to the heavy meal. The cucumbers were actually not cut all the way through, a callback to an early episode of Clear Card where Touya teases Sakura for not cutting the cucumbers all the way. How cute is that?!
The cafe had an abundance of goods, but I had spent enough for one day so I bought a plastic box with cookies and a Sakura strap for ¥1600 (about $15). The cookies were good, and the box is an adorable keepsake!
I appreciate that Cardcaptor Sakura collaborations always strive to capture the whimsy and magic of the show itself. Being in atmosphere alone calls back to carefree days of wanting to be a magical girl and running around my backyard with the birdwand my parents bought for me. I genuinely believe the series has helped shape me into the girl I am today, and for that guidance alone I can only be grateful.
Thank you Cardcaptor Sakura!