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Kansai Scene Magazine

Food & Drink


‘Tis the season to be romantic! So grab that special someone and check out some of Kansai’s intimate dining spots.

Italian Romancing

01-too small-OSTERIA GAUDENTE-Janelle McNeillTucked away in central Umeda is the intimate haven Osteria Gaudente. Italian head chef Alcide greets guests warmly from the open kitchen and the very attentive wait staff take care of you with friendly professionalism. Decadent lunch choices start from only ¥1,000 and will leave you feeling satisfied and content. Try for a late lunch to avoid the crowds, and always make a booking for evening visits. Consult the experienced sommeliers about which of the abundant Italian wines to choose for your festive cheers, whilst enjoying the specialized Christmas menu. Visit the Kobe branch, and watch effervescent chef Vincenzo create the renowned wood-fired pizzas. Both locations ooze a distinct mood of warm Italian hospitality.

Osteria Gaudente
Open: Umeda branch 11:30am–10:30pm; Kobe branch 11am–10:30pm • Price Range: Lunch ¥1,000–¥3,400; Dinner ¥3,500–¥5,800 • • Access: (UMEDA branch) Short walk from Hanshin Umeda Stn. (KOBE branch) In Kobe Harborland Mosaic. 10-min walk from JR Kobe Stn.

Seductive Haven

12-SOUTH PARADISE-Janelle McNeillStepping into South Paradise Cafe in Honmachi, your equilibrium will be immediately reset by the resort hotel mood that greets you. The alluring pockets of privacy, floor-to-ceiling windows, meandering music, and sensual lighting all combine to melt away the outside world. Artful designs, gourmet magazines, and lavish greenery come together in the luxurious space. Come for breakfast to feel like royalty with cushions and candles, or saunter in for a slow, relaxing lunch. With five breakfast and lunch choices, there is plenty of variety and opportunities for sharing. The menu also boasts regional salad blends from around Japan in both half or full servings, healthy juice smoothie mixes, antipasto and ¥500 tapas.

South Paradise Cafe
Open: 8am–11pm • Price Range: Breakfast ¥380–¥1580; Lunch ¥880–¥1,880; Dinner Course menu ¥3,500–¥7,500 • • Access: Exit 2 from Honmachi and head North along Midosuji; Exit 13 from Yodoyabashi and head South along Midosuji.

Love is all around

05-too small-LOVE CENTRAL-Janelle McNeillIf you’re in the mood for love this Christmas, Love Central beckons. Established in 2013 in collaboration with famous crooners Dreams Come True, there is a special blend of deliberate romance in the air here. Daytime energy at Sumile restaurant is bright and elegant, whilst the evening sparkles with promises of forever after, at lounge Nocturne upstairs. Situated right on the river opposite the commanding Nakanoshima Public Hall, the location is simply stunning. Lunch courses start from ¥1,800 and pamper you with their gentle combination of seasonal flavors. Be sure to grab a commemorative pair shot near the LOVE sign, ring the love bell in the garden, and take a hand-in-hand stroll beneath the pretty fairy lights for a true Japan style dating experience.

Love Central
Sumile Restaurant: Open: 11am–11pm • Price Range: Lunch ¥1,800–¥4800; Dinner ¥5,800–¥10,000 • Lounge Nocturne: Open: 5pm–11pm (during Autumn/Winter) • Price Range: Dinner ¥2,500–¥5,500 • • Access: 5-min walk from Yodoyabashi Subway Stn or Keihan Naniwabashi Stn (Nakanoshima Line)

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