Food & Drink | TOKYO FOOD FILE

Camelback: Exceptional sandwiches and flat whites a short walk from Yoyogi Park

by Robbie Swinnerton

Special To The Japan Times

A well constructed sandwich is more than just a snack. When it has been put together with prime ingredients, creative flair and artisan skill — the way it’s done at Camelback — it is a meal of balance and beauty.

This excellent little hole-in-the-wall also doubles as a stand-up/take-out coffee counter. Barista Keitaro Suzuki is an alumnus of Shibuya’s highly rated Streamer Coffee and makes a mean flat white. But it’s the range of premium sandwiches that really makes Camelback such a welcome addition to the buzzy Tomigaya-Kamiyamacho area.

Hayato Naruse, a trained sushi chef, worked five years in the U.S. and another five in Tokyo’s Nishi-Ogikubo neighborhood — and he brings the same degree of precision to bear here. His signature sandwich is made with prosciutto and green shiso, an aromatic combination that he elevates further with freshly grated yuzu zest.

Vegetarians will approve of the Four Types of Mushrooms, or the deluxe version with plenty of added cheese. Omnivores, though, should look no further than the Lamb Bacon (which Naruse cures himself), served with dried tomatoes and fragrant coriander leaf.

The bread is fresh, and all sandwiches come with a dill pickle and a square of sushi-style tamagoyaki omelet.

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