Belgian Restaurant Proves a Hit in Tokyo


Japan's capital Tokyo is currently home to crypto-friendly Belgian restaurant St. Arnould.   According to The Japan Times, it ran for a length of eight years in the preceding city until the proprietor, Yousuke Sato, chose to move from Nagoya to Akasaka, a Tokyo district in November, 2017.

Sato was busy running a restaurant famous for its Belgian beers and traditional food items such as cheeses and stewed beef carbonade when a cryptocurrency user visited him two decades back. He allowed the customer to cover a ¥1,200 pizza with XEM. Sato immediately became interested in this new digital world, «I became interested in virtual monies about five years back and began tweeting about them. I thought it would be interesting to accept payment in a virtual money, so I said yes.»

Little did he know that cryptocurrency users were waiting for this kind of opportunity - St. Arnould went on to become the first restaurant/store that enabled people to buy food with XEM. Finally, before moving to Tokyo, he issued a cryptocurrency and raised $75,040 (¥8 million).

However, his choice of cryptocurrency raised a few eyebrows owing to the CoinCheck hack which led to $530 million worth NEM being stolen last month. Sato responded to XEM and other cryptocurrency's criticism by stating, «I believe the operators weren't strict enough with the management of the currency. There is nothing wrong with the notion of digital currency itself.   The market for virtual currency is still young so it's only natural that it has become a goal of speculation, but I think it has potential as a currency that's not limited by country. I think it's too early to say what will happen to virtual currencies in the future.»

Japan has the largest cryptocurrency exchange market and unlike China, the country has chosen to pave way. In fact, Tokyo has many shops, restaurants and pubs which accept cryptocurrencies. One of these comprises electronic retail firm  Yamada Denki, which introduced bitcoin payments in two of its stores in Tokyo recently. Additional bitcoin-friendly places include Barbecue restaurant Nikugatou, Sushi restaurant Numazuko, Hackers Bar and Awabar.