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Nishihara is not a neighborhood renowned for fine dining. But since September, it has been drawing a growing number of gourmets to its humble suburban shōtengai (shopping street). Their destination: one of the smallest but classiest new pastry shops in the city.

Called Equal, this is the latest project by master patissier Yuichi Goto. Best-known as co-owner of the ever-excellent Path in nearby Tomigaya, his illustrious resume includes spells at the three-star Restaurant Troisgros in France, and then at Sugalabo in Tokyo’s Kamiyacho.

So far, Goto is only offering two products at his bijou boutique but both are outstanding. One is a superb, creamy cheesecake encased in the most delicate of crusts.

The other is his signature confection, cream puffs — or choux a la creme, to give them their proper French terminology. These golden-brown orbs of crisp pastry filled with meltingly soft confectioners cream have just the right balance: sweet, but not cloying in the slightest. Don’t stint yourself; buy a three-pack. But accept that they may not make it home.

Equal has no room inside to sit and eat these jewels. Instead, head around the corner to Paddlers Coffee for a takeout latte or Americano. Then sit outside in the autumn sunshine and indulge.

Cream puffs ¥850 (three pieces), cheesecake ¥550 (both take-out only); little English spoken

In line with COVID-19 guidelines, the government is strongly requesting that residents and visitors exercise caution if they choose to visit bars, restaurants, music venues and other public spaces.

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