Possibly the best pancake restaurants in Japan are A Happy Pancake chain of restaurants (aka “Shiawase no Pancake” – literally Pancake Happiness).
There are several all over Japan but the 2 most impressive ones are in Omotesando + Ikebukuro. There is also one in Shinjuku. The one in Omotosando/Harajuku is the newest, cleanest, and biggest of them all, but the others are just as worth checking out.
To find the one in Ikebukuro, exist the Seibu east exit from JR Ikebukuro Station + head south. A few blocks down, turn right, then turn left down the 1st alley (see map below). You can also use GPS on smart phones + simply type the name in – your smartphone should show you a map, the Happy Pancake location, and your direction relative to it. It’s one block southwest of the Baskin Robbins, also shown @ the bottom of this map:
The alleyway looks like this and at the far end is the entrance which leads back out to a street on the southeast side of JR Ikebukuro Station:
A Happy Pancake is 2/3 down the alley on the left – and is in the basement shown here.
Prices range from $8-$15. Lots of great combinations.
To get seated enter the number of adults + kids at this machine, then press OK – you’ll be give a ticket with a number on it. You can also scan the QR code onto your smartphone.
Be careful on the treacherous stairs – yikes! – which have no railing!
Wait outside the door to be seated.