Since A16 opened, this little plaza has given the city something it has sorely lacked — a public area that’s not a mall or slotted in as an afterthought between skyscrapers. The small garden boasts trees and shrubs (though not yet in leaf), a sward of lawn, benches where you can read or people-watch, and up above, a proper view of the open sky.
Two sides of this square are high-rise, overlooked by the soaring tower of Marunouchi Park Building. But the other two are built mostly in retro red-brick style, replicating the look of Josiah Conder’s Ichigo-kan, the very first Western-style building erected on this spot in 1894 — complete with old-fashioned windows and low, sloping roofs that let in the sunshine until well into the late afternoon.
That’s the Old World view as you sit down on the south-facing terrace outside A16 and scan the single-sheet menu of New World dishes. There are half a dozen starters to choose from; five pizzas; four kinds of pasta; and just a single main dish, the house-special braised pork meatballs. It’s much the same selection at dinner, with just a couple more entrees added. For such a mainstream location, it’s all quite affordable.