I was told the grand opening to the public is March 21, but I want to confirm this! Do not expect to see neon signs pointing the way. In fact, I do not recall seeing any exterior signs ... yet anyway. Through the glass front door ... discreet signage ...
The evening was certainly special. Lots of tea, Japanese foods ... and most importantly the people. Many Ippodo "family" attendees and scores of well wishers.
Not lost in all this was the fact that this event was planned for March 11th, the second anniversary of the devastating earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear disaster. Although I did not ask, I have to think this was intentional ... a sort of homage and perseverence.
Also, in asking questions, it appears this will not signal a change in shipping online orders direct from Japan. You can walk in and purchase products, beverages, and it seems food ... but if you are not able to visit Ippodo NYC, you will still have to order online and have your order shipped from Japan.
I will be emailing a few Ippodo representatives with questions I have, so if you have any questions, I can attempt to receive an answer and post it here.