Being particular about the original cake and music.

Text : Keiko Nakamura / Kanako Takimoto


  ‘Domu’ is the place counter selling their handmade cake with a showcase facing toward Imadegawa-dori. At the evening twilight time, a guy wearing a suit stopped by and ordered five cakes for his family, and I thought, “We don’t see this kind of local cake store around here anymore”. The owner said, “I wanted to make this store for mothers who carry their kids on a bicycle back seat and able to buy without getting off”. The owner and patissier, Mrs.Keiko Motokawa told me that she opened this store in 1980 when she was 25 years old after she taught how to make cake as a teacher at confectionery department in a cooking school. She focuses on a tart which was rare at that time she opened here, and also sells about 20 kinds of cakes such as shortcake and cream puff. She offers a place to eat inside and also a weekly lunch menu as well.

  I ordered ’Tarte au Mont Blanc’(450yen). The texture was moist and crispy and a chestnut cream wasn’t too sweet but very rich and exquisite taste. The reason why we all love this cake is because it has genuine taste but it doesn’t put on airs too much. She told me, “I pursue to make a cake in order to enable the characteristics of the materials to be utilized and have created more than 500 kinds of original recipes so far. For example, ‘Maple in cream puff’ (390yen), its dough has milk and butter in rather than using water, and it is usually considered that it doesn’t work like that way, but somehow it does. This is a very popular and unique sweet which has maple syrup inside of petit cream puff. ‘Tea Valencia’ (400yen) has orange and tea flavor cream in it with a perfect harmony, so that once you eat it, you can’t forget about it.

  “I think I love to express myself”, she adds. Her expression is not only in her confectionery. She started playing the piano at the age of 4, and when she was a college student, she performed at a restaurant playing the piano with original tune. After she opened her cake shop, she had been away from a music world for a while, but she came back to produce her own songwriting and made a song about Kamogawa river and her mother who has dementia, then she launched CD called ‘Into the sky’ with professional supports. A song called ‘Omokage’ (remaining image) goes like, “My mother who can’t realize who I am, calls my name letting a baby doll suck her nipple. What a lovely smile she has...” She explained, “There are a lot of things that I didn’t realize till I started nursing my mom. I just need to express things I see through my age”.

  There is one upright piano sitting inside of this long and narrow cake shop. She asks professional pianist to play for a mini concert regularly, and she also plays the piano mutely after closing shop in order to let her melody out as a sound. She manages a cake shop and also nurses her mother at the same time, and uses a little bit of time for songwriting and it seems hard for me to do everything like that. However, her vitality and creativeness for cake and music can inspire everyone around.



ADDRESS : 92 Higashi-iru Isshin-cho, Imadegawa-dori Teramachi, Kamigyo-ku, Kyoto City (MAP)

PHONE : +81(0)75-256-3557

HOURS : 10:30 a.m. ~ 10:00 p.m.

CLOSED : Sunday and Monday