Dongree Books & Story cafe

ドングリー ブックス&ストーリーカフェ

In the outskirts of Otsu city in Shiga prefecture on a ten minute walk from JR Kusatsu Line’s Ishibe station is the lovely ‘Dongree Books & Story cafe’.
Dongree is run by a young couple and used to be a popular coffee stand located in Kyoto’s Higashiyama area until it closed in May 2020 after which they reopened at its current location Konan, Shiga in August 2020. Dongree’s concept is to ‘live abundantly’ and ‘build a village without money’, that one doesn’t need money to be happy.

滋賀、大津の郊外で、JR草津線の石部駅から徒歩で10分ぐらいに、素敵なカフェ「Dongree Books & Story cafe」があります。

Dongreeは若い夫婦で営まれておりますが、昔京都の東山エリアの人気なコーヒースタンドだった。コーヒースタンドは2020年5月に閉店して、2020年8月を現在滋賀の湖南で「ドングリー ブックス&ストーリーカフェ」としてオープンした。ドングリーのコンセプトは【「豊かに暮らしたい」と願う全ての人とともに、Dongreeはあらゆる事業に挑んでいきたいと思っています。

The café sits in a renovated kominka and covers most of the ground floor of the building. From the outside it mostly looks like an ordinary kominka with a typical Japanese design. It has the Japanese shaped building with Japanese rooftiles and vertical slat wood walls.


The entrance is renovated and features a red brick wall with a Dongree sign and above that a lovely antique mason jar lamp. The door of the entrance is has a deer antler for a doorhandle.


Entering the café you will first enter a narrow corridor where the customers have to take off their shoes and put on room slippers. At the end of the corridor going through a second door will lead you inside the actual café.


The interior of the café is large but cozy thanks to the warm colors of the wood used for the flooring, furniture and ceiling. Since the floor is made up of irregular shaped boards it squeaks quite a lot while walking around adding to that retro atmosphere. The café really oozes and at-home atmosphere with the livingroom like layout.


The seating consists of three tables for two, two half circular tables for three and a living-room table with zabuton for four people. Along the wall of the corridor is a large bookshelf where customers can freely grab a book to read inside the cafe.


In the back of the cafe is space dedicated to a small shop that sells lovely handmade products from the brand Kakera Knit, a famous Shiga knitwear company and Ishibe or Konan blend coffee that features lovely Japanese style package designs, all of which will make nice gifts for back home.

カフェの奥に小さなショップスペースで、滋賀の有名なニットウエアブランドKakera Knit,のハンドメイド編んでいた商品または石部ブレンド湖南ブレンドコーヒーが販売されています。コーヒーは素敵な日本のデザインされたパッケージに入っていますがニットウエアやコーヒーはどれでも素敵なギフトになります、おすすめです。

Don’t forget to make a visit to the lovely toilet area as well, even if you dont have to go. On your way to the toilet going through double glass in wood sliding doors you will find another shopping space inside the hallway where they sell ceramics, granola and some small general goods.


Dongree’s menu is small but fantastic with only three choices for lunch: a Konan area sourced vegetable and cassava lunch plate, a vegetable and mushroom pizza margherita or a cream sauce bacon pasta. 


Their standard and most popular plate is the Konan area vegetable lunch plate which uses vegetables from local farms and includes delicious spring rolls that are made with cassava potatoes from a local Brazilian farmer instead of wheat flour wrappers which give the spring rolls a more chewy sweet texture.


There is also a sweets menu which consists of cheese cake or choco & raspberry tart. In the weekends there is also a weekend only special dessert available which is a choco and coffeejelly antique parfait, which is a stylish parfait delivered in a wineglass to enjoy while reading a book.


Last but not least we haven’t talked about one the main sights of the café yet. Hidden behind the café is a wooden corridor that leads to a stylish coffee stand in the back, the stand where it all started in Kyoto.


While the coffee stand is located outside it’s covered by transparent corrugated sheets which let in the light and gives the space a natural atmosphere.


The café offers parking space for 3 cars on a one minute walking distance from the cafe, which makes this cafe ideal for roadtrips. See map of parking below.


Dongree Books & Story cafe is a MUST visit for anyone interested in soaking up the atmosphere of a Japanese style kominka cafe and anyone who wants to eat delicious Shiga produced food.


Access to Dongree Books & Story

Hours: 11:30 AM ~ 18:00 PM

Closed*: Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday

Nearest Stations & Exit:

JR Kusatsu Line – Ishibe Station. See map below

*We always recommend checking the opening hours & holidays on the official website or instagram of the establishment.
Hours: 11:30 AM ~ 18:00 PM
Closed*: Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday
Nearest Stations & Exit:

JR Kusatsu Line – Ishibe Station.  See map below

*We always recommend checking the opening hours & holidays on the official website or instagram of the establishment.

Access from Ishibe Station

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