Many cafes and coffee shops offer sweets and pastries to accompany the drinks on their menus, but owner-barista Shota Nakatani is taking this one step further at Yard Coffee & Craft Chocolate.
As its name suggests, Yard, which opened on April 13 in Osaka's Tennoji district, doesn't have just any old desserts on its menu: Along with its single-origin specialty coffee, Yard serves desserts made with bean-to-bar craft chocolate using recipes developed by local patissier Tetsuya Nakatani, of patisserie and chocolaterie Nakatanitei. The matching surnames aren't a coincidence: Nakatanitei is run by Shota's father, making Yard, in part, a father-son collaboration.
According to the younger Nakatani, this partnership was a goal that he and his father shared. To that end, after leaving his job as an IT salaryman, he joined the team at the Tokyo-based Glitch Coffee & Roasters in 2017. There, he promptly began what he calls "tongue training": learning to identify the country of origin, region and processing method (how the coffee bean is removed from the coffee cherry, which converts the raw plant into a product ready for roasting) of beans from blind coffee tastings.