Japan is no stranger to unique experiences, and a new restaurant where there’s a very real possibility of not getting what you ordered is one of them.

An image of the front of the first pop-up restaurant in Tokyo
The Restaurant of Mistaken Orders was first created some years ago in Tokyo © YUKI MORISHIMA(D-CORD)

“The Restaurant of Mistaken Orders” is a pop-up concept born in 2017 in Tokyo from an idea by producer Shiro Oguni. As the name itself suggests, the dish you order once you sit down at a table might not be the one you end up eating - and that’s because the restaurant only staffs people living with dementia.

An image of one of the Restaurant of Mistaken Orders' servers
According to the WHO there are around 35 million people in the world living in dementia © YUKI MORISHIMA(D-CORD)

“Dementia is so widely misunderstood,” said Oguni in a presentation for the restaurant. “People believe you can’t do anything for yourself and the condition will often mean complete isolation from society”. But that’s not what Oguni and the creators of the restaurant believe, and that’s precisely the goal of this pop-up - creating a feeling of open-mindedness and acceptance to spread awareness about dementia and hopefully lowering the social stigma around it.

A picture of one of the Restaurant's servers taking an order
The name of the restaurant already helps patrons arrive with an open mind © YUKI MORISHIMA(D-CORD)

The restaurant is a stylish and fashionable place where “everything on the menu tastes delicious,” so you don’t have to worry about whether or not you’ll enjoy the mistaken order brought to you. Ever since the restaurant’s first event, staff calculated that 37% of orders are generally mistaken, but 99% of the customers “declared themselves happy,” as well as believing that this concept might really help in understanding dementia patients better.

A picture of one of the servers bringing orders to a table
The fame of the restaurant started immediately at the launch event when tweets about the pop-up went viral © YUKI MORISHIMA(D-CORD)

Ever since its creation, the Restaurant of Mistaken Orders has appeared in several places around Japan, from its launch event in Roppongi in 2017 to a café in Machida, via a restaurant in Shizuoka in 2018 and a pop-up at the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare in 2019 back in Tokyo.

A picture of two servers working in the Restaurant of Mistaken Orders
The launch event in 2017 served also as training and practice for the restaurant's waiters and staff © YUKI MORISHIMA(D-CORD)

The interest around the restaurant and its movement are growing steadily every day, so if you want to stay up-to-date with them and learn where the next pop-up event will be, you can do so at their official website here and Facebook page here.

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