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Old South Pearl’s New Japanese Bakery Is the Best Thing Since Sliced Bread

But Tokyo Premium has that, too, along with brioche, croissants, sandwiches, doughnuts, and more

A selection of sweet and savory pastries from Tokyo Premium Bakery on Old South Pearl Street
Josie Sexton/Eater

Matcha-dusted doughnut twists, custard-filled cornets, spicy cod roe baguette, and milk bread by the loaf — these are a few delights at the new Tokyo Premium Bakery on Old South Pearl Street.

It’s a sweet and modern cafe started by three friends who moved to the states just two years ago from Japan, looking to bring the now ubiquitous European-inflected bakeries of Tokyo to a testing ground in America. They chose Denver for its size and market potential.

“I saw it as a big chance,” co-owner Manri Nakayama says. He met his business partners and fellow bakers, Hiro Arima and Satoru Matsumura, at university playing on the club soccer team. Between them, the 30-somethings have more than 15 years of baking experience.

Some of the more traditional items they’re producing now on Pearl Street are loaves of pillowy white shokupan milk bread, sweet cookie-like rolls of melonpan, and a deep-fried and curry-filled karepan.

Matcha and other creams also fill the brioche, and bacon and sausages come wrapped around pain d’epi or inside soft buns. To drink, there are matcha and green tea lattes, turmeric and ginger chai, and a full espresso bar.

A bacon “epi” and matcha latte from Tokyo Premium Bakery
Josie Sexton/Eater

Status: Tokyo Premium Bakery opens at 6 a.m. Tuesday through Sunday and is closed on Mondays. The bakery stays open until 4 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday and on Sunday; it closes at 6 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays. Find it at 1540 South Pearl Street and online here.