Cafes are usually open all through the afternoon rather than just lunch and dinnertime, and they often serve light food items as well as coffee, tea and desserts.
See Kansai cafe map
A big, sprawling, comfortable cafe under the train tracks and highway. The menu is varied and casual, and lunch is served to 3pm.
Nakazakicho-Nishi 2-55, Chelsea Market. (next to Umeda Center Building, about 5 min. E of Umeda sta.) Open 11am-midnight daily.
Coffee, wireless internet access and good food from the popular Wired Cafe chain. Open until 3am on Friday and Saturday nights.
Chayamachi 10-12, NU Chayamachi 2F. Open 11am-midnight daily.
(Osaka: Honmachi - Cafe). 06-6258-3341
A funky-casual cafe with outdoor seating (heated in the winter) and three stories of dining space; the second floor is fashioned after a European brasserie, and the top floor is a popular party space. The inexpensive food menu includes pizzas and pastas, spare ribs and the ubiquitous Caesar salad.
Bakuromachi 4-4-7, BBB Bldg. 1/3F. (5 min. N of Shinsaibashi Sta.) Open 11:30am-10:30pm (LO) daily.
(Osaka: Honmachi - Bakery). 06-6263-0212
Excellent sandwiches, breads and pastries from this French bakery; there's also a spacious cafe behind the shop. (Paul also has retail branches in Daimaru and Hanshin department stores.)
Honmachi 2-3-14. Open 10am-10pm daily.
Attached to a popular bakery of the same name, this pleasant cafe offers pastries, sandwiches, pancakes and espresso beverages.
Minami-Horie 1-16-9. Open 9am-8pm (LO) daily.
(Osaka: Namba - Cafe). 06-6648-6472
Like the Muji shop itself, Meal Muji is deceptively simple and always tasteful. The all-day cafeteria serves various "deli" dishes in small plates - Y780 for three items or Y930 for four, plus Y200 extra for coffee or Y250 for wine. Lunch is served till 3pm, with cafe time from 3-5:30pm.
Namba Sennichimae 12-22, Namba Center Bldg B2/3 F. Open 11am-10pm daily.
This is health food in an attractive cafe setting, with plenty of brown rice and soy milk. The extensive drinks list includes matcha cappucino, black sesame smoothies and plenty of Chinese teas; food ranges from brown-rice onigiri and vegetable curries to organic cakes. Weekend hours start later (10am), and there's no smoking.
Nanba 5-1-60, Nanba City 2F. (on the way to Nanba Parks) Open 7:30am-10pm daily.
(Osaka: Shinsaibashi - Coffee shop). 06-6251-6390
Serious gourmet coffee from around the world, in a stylishly modern coffeehouse that wouldn't look out of place anywhere in North America. [See FULL REVIEW
Higashi-Shinsaibashi 1-13-19, NT Bldg 1F. (from Midosuji turn E on the street that runs along the north side of Daimaru; keep walking for 3 blocks until you get to Family Mart on your left hand side; at Family Mart turn left; Link is located about 10 meters north, on the right hand side) Open 9am-10pm. Closed Mondays.
(Osaka: Shinsaibashi - Cafe). 06-6282-5277
A pleasant, trendy little cafe in the heart of Shinsaibashi with hip decor and a nice vibe. Unusual for Osaka, they serve an American breakfast plate from 7am-noon.
Nishi-Shinsaibashi 1-5-24, Hearton Hotel 1F. Open 7am-midnight daily.
(Osaka: Umeda - International). 06-6440-1062
This bright and airy dining room offers a far more interesting menu than the typical hotel coffeeshop, with many organic and vegetarian dishes in the "Nature Cuisine" section. There's also a popular buffet lunch and Friday and Saturday evening dinner buffets.
Oyodonaka 1-1-20, Westin Hotel Osaka 1F. Open 6:30am-11pm daily.
(Osaka: Umeda - French). 06-6341-7782
The provincial cuisine of Bretagne (Brittany) is the specialty here, including some 40 varieties of galettes (savory buckwheat crepes). Lunch is served till 3pm, and in the evenings the bar is open till 2:30am; the regular food menu is served till 11pm. The interior is huge and spaciously laid out, and outdoor terrace seating is also available.
Dojima-Hama 1-4-27, Dojima Nakamachi Bldg. 1F. (1 min. from exit C-92 Kita-Shinchi station Dojima Chika Center) Open 11:30am-3am daily.
(Osaka: Umeda - Cafe). 06-6359-2173
Inexpensive bakery and deli items and salads from the famous no-brand design store Mujirushi.
Ofukacho 3-1, Grand Front Osaka North Wing 4F. Open 10am-9pm daily.
This hip little cafe with attached art-oriented bookstore is a relaxing place for a break from shopping in E-ma or nearby. There's a substantial, inexpensive food menu featuring quiche, stews and lasagne plus pies and cakes.
Umeda 1-12-6, E-ma B1F. Open 9am-11:30pm daily.
(Osaka: Umeda 2-chome - Cafe). 06-6346-2588
A spacious Italian-style cafe in the basement of Herbis Ent, serving panini sandwiches during the day, and wine, cocktails and light dishes after work.
Umeda-2-2-22, Herbis Plaza Ent B2F. Open 10am-10:30pm (LO) daily.
(Osaka: Umeda 2-chome - Cafe). 06-6346-4877
Given their prime location at the underground entrance to the splashy Herbis Ent complex, Roll Madu would probably be full if they only sold coffee in styrofoam cups. Instead they offer a nice variety of desserts, including Belgian waffles and their namesake "roll cakes".
Umeda-2-2-22, Herbis Plaza Ent B2F. Open 10am-11pm daily.
If you're looking for an alternative to the usual cat cafe, Fukuro no Mise ("The Owl Shop") lets you hang out and politely interact with the shop's eight resident owls. Admission is Y1000 for one hour, including a soft drink, or Y1200 if you'd prefer a beer or cocktail.
Tenmabashi 1-10-13. Open noon-8pm. Closed Mondays.
The admission charge here is Y1000 for the first hour, which includes a soft drink and a complimentary kitty treat. Drinks include orange and apple juices, coffee and 23 kinds of flavored teas. Additional drinks are Y300, and kitty treats are Y100. They also have another branch about five minutes away.
Namba Sennichimae 13-6, Dai-ichi Bldg 5F. Open noon-10pm daily.
(Osaka: Shinsaibashi - Cat cafe). 06-7492-4060
This Shinsaibashi cafe has ten resident cats of various breeds as well as some exotic "guest" cats. The menu offers cake, coffee, tea and chai as well as cocktails and Singha beer. The cover charge is Y1080 for the first hour.
Nishi-Shinsaibashi 2-4-6, Hanagetsu Dai-ichi Bldg 4F. Open 11am-10pm. Closed Mondays.
The second branch of one of Osaka's longest-running cat cafes, with 21 cats on staff in a pleasantly decorated, modern space. Admission is Y1100 per hour on weekdays and Y1200 on weekends and holidays. Kitty treats are available for an additional charge.
Nishi-Shinsaibashi 2-17-10, Villa Inoue 2F. Open 11am-9pm (Sun, Mon -7pm) daily.
"Time for Cats" is one of Osaka's first cat cafes, in operation since 2004. There are now eighteen resident cats. and admission is Y1100 for the first hour on weekdays (including one drink) and Y1300 on weekends and holidays.
Kurosakicho 5-16, Herat Bldg 2F. Open 11am-9pm (Sun, Mon -7pm) daily.
This lively cafe is perched in an ideal people-watching location midway up the Kitanozaka hill, with a popular outdoor sidewalk terrace that takes full advantage of the view. The menu includes everything from light snacks and sweets to full-course French dinners (from Y2500).
Yamamoto-dori 1-7-21. (1 block S of Yamamoto-dori and Kitano-zaka) Open 10am-11pm (LO) daily.
Certainly one of grandest cafe settings in town, Freundlieb occupies the former Kobe Union Church, a Kitano sightseeing landmark. The menu includes sandwiches and salads as well as fresh pastries and bread from the Freundlieb bakery downstairs.
Ikuta-machi 4-6-15. (1 block E and 1 block S of Kanocho 2-chome crossing, in the former Kobe Union Church) Open 10am-6:30pm (LO). Closed Wednesdays.
(Kobe: Kyukyoryuchi - Cafe). 078-331-6553
Featured in architecture and design magazines as well as restaurant guides, this beautifully repurposed space is the former lobby of a British bank built in 1938. It's a stylish spot for an afternoon coffee or an after-dinner drink (but less inspiring for dinner).
(Kobe: Motomachi - Cafe). 078-335-2675
Inexpensive bakery and deli items and salads from the famous no-brand design store Mujirushi.
Sannomiya 3-6-1, Kobe BAL B1F. Open 11am-8pm daily.
(Kobe: Sannomiya - Belgian rest/beer bar). 078-333-0887
One of the few places in town where you can find a multiplicity of Belgian beers, in a convenient location right at the foot of Ikuta Road.
Kita-Nagasa-dori 1-1-3. (at the base of the road leading up to Tokyu Hands, at the railroad tracks) Open 11:30am-11pm daily.
(Kobe: Sannomiya south - Cafe). 078-230-3412
A rooftop oasis right in central Kobe, this cafe looks out onto a big garden area, with seating both indoors and out. The casual, inexpensive food menu is a mix of Japanese and Western dishes - oxtail stew, pork cutlets, pastas, and of course desserts.
Goko-dori 8-2-6, Kobe Kokusai Kaikan 11F. (on Flower Road about 3 min. south of JR Sannomiya station) Open 11am-10pm (LO) daily.
(Kobe: Motomachi - Cat cafe). 078-391-5420
A conveniently located cat cafe near Sannomiya station, Nyanny charges Y1000 for the first hour of cat time (Y1200 with a soft drink, Y1500 with an alcoholic beverage).
Motomachi-dori 2-6-11, 3F. Open 11am-10pm (enter by 9). Closed 3rd Tuesday.
The resident flock at this charming small-bird cafe includes canaries, finches, Java sparrows, lovebirds, cockatiels and various parakeets - some three dozen in all. The food menu includes both desserts and savory items like beef-tendon curry.
Shironouchi-dori 3-2-14. Open 1-8pm. Closed Mondays, Tuesdays.
(Kobe: Sumiyoshi - Rabbit cafe). 078-862-6440
This two-story rabbit cafe offers a number of pricing options - you can play with the rabbits in the second-floor playroom for 30 minutes (Y900), or you can relax with a cup of coffee in the downstairs cafe before or afterwards (Y500/30 minutes or Y900/60 minutes). The cafe is attached to a pet shop where you can adopt rabbits, and they run a hotel service for pet rabbits.
Uozaki Kitamachi 5-5-14. Open noon-7pm daily.