Sakura and matcha combine in new desserts from Kyoto’s Itohkyuemon
It won’t be long until the sakura return to the boughs of Japan’s cherry blossom trees, and while that’s certainly something to get excited about, what’s arguably just as great is that sakura is already starting to show up in Japan’s desserts.
So even though we recently stuffed ourselves with all sorts of cherry blossom sweets from Mujirushi, now we’re feeling drawn to the latest offering from Itohkyuemon, a Kyoto tea merchant founded all the way back in 1832.
In the nearly two centuries since the company has also expanded to manage a chain of cafes, and their newest item is this amazing-looking Sakura Matcha Parfait.
There’s a lot going on in that glass, so let’s take a look at what the parfait offers. Representing the sakura side are sakura ice cream, sakura-flavor kinton (candied chestnut), shiratama mochi dumplings, and gelatin, plus agar in a cherry blossom-pink color.
The matcha part of the package comes in the form of matcha gelatin and matcha mitsu syrup, both made using Itohkyuemon’s prized green tea grown in the Kyoto Prefecture town of Uji. Situated right in the middle of those sweet strata is a layer of puffed rice to add some crunchy texture.
The Sakura Matcha Parfait can be ordered by itself for 1,390 yen or as part of a Sakura Chakai (“Sakura Tea Party”) set for 1,990 yen, which gets you a cup of green tea and sakura matcha sweet bean paste daifuku mochi dumpling, in case you want a dessert to go with your dessert.
But if even that’s not enough there’s also the 1,680-yen Sakura Matcha Sweets Plate, with the sakura matcha daifuku, scoops of sakura, matcha ice cream, Uji matcha cheesecake, matcha strawberry roll cake, matcha and hojicha (roasted green tea) chocolate, and a mini parfait.
▼ The Sakura Matcha Sweets Plate is perfect for sharing with/gloating about to friends.
The parfait and plate are available at Itohkyuemon’s Uji flagship and Uji Station branches, as well as its café in Kyoto City’s Gion Yonjo neighborhood. Both, like the cherry blossoms themselves, will be around for a limited but indeterminate time.