I’m completely charmed by this story, told on Cabel Sasser’s blog, about a cafe in Japan with a most unusual system where you don’t get what you ordered.


The idea behind Ogori Cafe, which is in the Urban Design Center Kashiwa-no-hain in Chiba, is that you get whatever the person in front of you ordered, and the thing you ask for goes to the person behind you. Everyone gets a little card with their order, telling them who made the order that they received. So it’s all about setting up a situation where patrons get to be benefactors to the people around them, and everyone experiences anticipation, surprise and hopefully, kindness and pleasure too.


The rules at Ogori Cafe are:

1. Let’s treat the next person. What to treat them with? It’s your choice.
2. Even if it’s a group of friends or a family, please form a single-file line. Also, you can’t buy twice in a row.
3. Please enjoy what you get, even if you hate it. (If you really, really hate it, let’s quietly give it to another while saying, “It’s my treat…”)
4. Let’s say “Thank You! (Gochihosama)” if you find the person with your Ogori cafe card.
5. We can’t issue a receipt.

Read more the whole story of Carl Sasser’s experience at Ogori Cafe here.