Matcha & Hydrangea Festival 2019 Held by Green Tea Store Itohkyuemon
25.May.2019 | FOOD
Uji-based green tea store Itohkyuemon is set to hold its Matcha x Hydrangea Matsuri 2019 in line with the hydrangea season until the end of June.
The main branch of Itohkyuemon in Uji is close to Mimuroto Temple, a temple famous for its hydrangea foliage visited by countless tourists during the rainy season. During this season, customers can be waiting up to 3 hours to enter the cafe. Last year, there were even days where they were closed by noon.
Hydrangea Parfait: Single – ¥1,280 (Tax Included) / Tea Set – ¥1,680 (Tax Included) / Yuzu Shizuku & Matcha Set – ¥1,980 (Tax Included)
The promotional video for Itohkyuemon’s Hydrangea Parfait garnered over 1.5 million views on their official Twitter page. It is the season’s No. 1 parfait, made with matcha hydrangea kinton, crushed hydrangea-coloured jelly, leaf-shaped matcha cookies, blueberries and more. This year, the shop introduces its new Yuzu Shizuku & Matcha Set.
Hydrangea Panna Cotta: ¥540 (Tax Included)
Matcha Hydrangea Kinton: ¥777 (Tax Included)
A variety of hydrangea-themed sweets and desserts will also be available to purchase and can be enjoyed in the cafe or ordered for takeout. This includes the Hydrangea Panna Cotta which sold out last year, the Matcha Hydrangea Kinton and more. All these treats are available in limited quantities.
Available: Now until end of June 2019
Branches: Uji Main Store / JR Uji Station Store
Hydrangea Panna Cotta
Available: Now until end of June 2019
Branches: Uji Main Store
Matcha Hydrangea Kinton
Available: Now until end of June 2019
Branches: Uji Main Store / JR Uji Station Store / Kyoto Station Store
Itohkyuemon Official Website: https://www.itohkyuemon.co.jp/corporate/
Freshly-Baked Caramel Flavoured Custard Apple Pies Cooking Up at RINGO in Japan
22.October.2019 | FOOD
RINGO, a chain of freshly-baked custard apple pie stores in Japan, is bringing back its caramel flavoured pies to all branches for a limited time commencing on November 15, 2019. The flavour was originally released last winter at RINGO’s first flavour.
This time around, the caramel has been cooked together inside the apple filling together with kogashi flour to elevate the gorgeous flavour of the apple, resulting in a rich “caramel apple” flavour.
The sweetness of the smooth and velvety custard melts into the caramel-laced apple filling which itself has a pleasantly palatable taste. The pie itself is crunchy, baked with cocoa powder and drizzled in a full-bodied caramel flavoured chocolate sauce.
This pie is perfect for the season, with its fragrant caramel and the sweet and sour combination of the apple, a fruit which is most delicious throughout autumn and winter.
Freshly-Baked Caramel Custard Apple Pie
Running: November 15, 2019 – December 25, 2019 (*Limited supplies each day)
Available: At RINGO branches across Japan
Price: ¥486 (Tax Included) for one
Official Website: http://ringo-applepie.com
Kaori’s Easy Recipe: Learn to Make Mickey Mouse Pancakes
With just a small bit of ingenuity, turn everyday food into something cute using Kaori’s easy recipe! With a few simple ideas, an ordinary recipe magically transforms into a cute dish.
In this recipe, I made Mickey Mouse pancakes from the Face Art ga Kawaii Pancake Pan Mickey Mouse set you can buy on Belle Maison. You hear a lot of different tips and tricks on how to make the perfect pancake with your batter, so I’ll show you a combined recipe to make yours as beautiful as possible♡
1. Ingredients (Makes 7-8 pancakes)
400g hot cake mix
1 large egg (approx. 52g)
2. Mix the egg and milk together well. Add the hot cake mix slowly to ensure it does not become lumpy. Next, add the honey and mix. If you have time, leave to stand for 30 minutes on the side.
3. For the next step, please see the video I made below.
Heat the pan well without any oil.
Once heated, place the pan on a wet cloth once to remove the residual heat, turn the flame down to a medium, and pour in your mix.
Once your mix is in the pan, reduce to a low heat, put the lid on and leave to cook.
Once the surface is dry, cook the back side of the mix in another pan which you have already heated.
Belle Maison sells Minnie Mouse and Winnie the Pooh versions too. Try making your own Disney pancakes!
Kaori invites you into her world of character-themed food dishes in her recipe series. Be sure to check out her Instagram where she has uploaded many pictures of her character dishes!
Face Art ga Kawaii Pancake Bread
Price: ¥2,640 (Tax Included)
Ginza’s Gorgeous Ice Cream Shop coisof Releases Halloween Parfait
18.October.2019 | FOOD
Ginza’s luxury ice cream shop has released a new parfait flavour for the Halloween and autumn season.
They have called it the “Akiiro Murasaki coi Parfait” (Autumn Colour Purple coi Parfait). Coloured like the vivid sumire plant―a species of violet―this mouth-watering parfait contains a jam made in-house with whole natsuhaze, a wild type of blueberry that has been used in Japan since ancient times. It’s topped with a dollop of rich and milky ice cream, a puree made from in-season purple sweet potatoes, and assorted nuts for added crunch.
Natsuhaze blueberries contain a lot of polyphenols, giving them an elegant sour flavour which goes unbelievably well with the taste of the milky ice cream and sweet potato. The parfait is served with a liqueur made from sumire extract.
For the Halloween period between October 16 to 31, the parfait can also be topped with various spooky decorations at no extra cost, like chocolate ghosts, spiders and cobwebs.
If you’re celebrating Halloween in Japan this year, or want to treat your date to a Halloween treat, then take them to Tokyo’s high-class shopping district Ginza for a luxurious parfait.
Akiiro Murasaki coi Parfait
Price: With Liqueur ¥1,200 (Before Tax) / Without Liqueur ¥1,000 (Before Tax)
Running: October 16, 2019 – November 30, 2019
*Free Halloween parfait toppings available October 16, 2019 – October 31, 2019
Grand Opening: January 17, 2019
Address: re:Dine GINZA Floor 9F, 4-3-1 Ginza, Chuo Ward, Tokyo
Opening Hours: 11:00-22:00
3 Must-Visit Locations to See Kyoto’s Autumn Colours at Night in 2019
17.October.2019 | SPOT
Kyoto is known as the ancient capital of Japan. It is said to be the place where quintessential Japanese culture started, and has charmed the world over with its incredibly rich 1,200-year history.
Autumn is a popular season in Japan, especially amongst tourists and travellers. While in spring you have the bright pink cherry blossoms, when autumntime rolls around, the trees turn into enchanting reds and yellows. People from around the world flock to see this incredible sight, with Kyoto being a very popular location.
KYOTO SIDE, a regional information website run by Kyoto Prefecture, has listed a number of must-visit places around the city for seeing the autumn foliage, which is known as koyo in Japanese. Of course, viewing the beautiful colours of the trees and their leaves is a must during the daytime, but seeing them in the evening has become popular in recent years too. It offers you an entirely different experience and atmosphere. Here’s three places you should jot down for your Kyoto trip this autumn.
Jitokuin Temple: A place of rest created by the chief priest and locals
Jitokuin Temple is located in the town of Yosano in Yosa District. Maple trees were planted almost 11 years ago with the help of locals and the chief priest to create local ties. Every autumn, the trees behind the mountain bloom in vivid hues, leading the temple to be nicknamed “Koyo-ji,” or “Temple of Autumn.” The locals work hard in the surrounding gardens day by day, so the sights change a little bit every year.
The maple trees are planted in a way that it looks like they take an entire side of the mountain. They are a sight to be hold during the day, but for one week in November there will be illuminations in the evenings, creating a magical scene under the night sky.
Light-Up Period: November 9, 2019 – November 16, 2019
Light-Up Time: 17:00-20:00 (Temple is open 09:00-20:00)
Autumn Foliage Peak Period: Early-Mid November
Address: 2250 Akeshi, Yosano, Yoza-gun, Kyoto
Support Fund: ¥300
Official Website: http://jitokuin.com
Nariaiji Temple: The 5-storey pagoda comes together with the autumn colours
Nariaiji Temple, located in Kyoto Prefecture’s city of Miyazu, is an ancient temple betwixt mountains overlooking Amanohashidate, one of Japan’s “Three Scenic Views.” It’s home to a grand 5-storey pagoda which is surrounded by hundreds of maple trees, offering an incredible, quintessentially Japanese view during autumn.
During the day, you can snap some gorgeous photos with the Sea of Japan and Amanohashidate in the back. For two nights only, on Saturday November 9 and Sunday November 10, the entire area will be beautifully lit up with warm illuminations.
Light-Up Period: November 9, 2019 – November 10, 2019
Light-Up Time: Sunset – 21:00 (Temple is open 08:00-16:30)
Autumn Foliage Peak Period: Early-Late November
Address: 339 Nariaiji, Miyazu, Kyoto
Official Website: http://www.nariaiji.jp/
Kasagiyama Prefectural Natural Park: A bright-red landscape from the mountain peak
Kasagiyama Prefectural Natural Park: is located atop Mt. Kasagi and is also home to Kasagi-dera, a temple with a 1,300-year history. During autumn, one entire side of the park is dyed in autumnal colours.
This November, the area will be lit up for a limited period, offering a gorgeous view from the mountain peak of the trees below as well as the flowing Kizugawa river.
Light-Up Period: November 1, 2019 – November 30, 2019
Light-Up Time: 17:00-21:00 (Temple is open 09:00-16:00)
Autumn Foliage Peak Period: Early-Mid November
Address: Mt. Kasagi, Kasagi, Soraku District, Kyoto
Price: Illuminations – Free / Temple – Adults ¥300, Children ¥100
Official Website: https://www.kasagidera.or.jp
See Japan’s autumn colours in an entirely new way this year at one of Kyoto’s many autumn-time illumination events.
Official Website: http://www.kyotoside.jp/
THE MACHIYA SHINSEN-EN: Kyoto’s New Traditional & Modern Fused Hotel
17.October.2019 | SPOT
THE MACHIYA SHINSEN-EN is a new hotel that just opened on Tuesday (October 15) located just a five-minute walk from Kyoto’s world heritage site Nijō Castle. Renovated from an old Kyoto-esque townhouse, this 21-room hotel fuses traditional Japanese architecture with the modern, complete with a lounge on the first floor decked with an open space where guests can enjoy a gorgeous breakfast if they choose the option. The friendly staff will be waiting to welcome guests to the hotel like friends.
The hotel’s name derives from Shinsenen, a Japanese Buddhist temple and Kyoto sightseeing spot located just a one-minute walk from the site. The temple is home to Japan’s only “ehomaki shrine” where Toshitokujin, the goddess of auspicious directions for the current year, is enshrined. The temple is also home to an enormous and beautiful lake, and is said to provide good luck with marriage ties, something which is known to everyone in Kyoto. The “machiya” part of the hotel’s name means “townhouse” in Japanese.
The hotel combines the traditional with the modern effortlessly, with four types of suite rooms available including the spacious corner suite rooms, as well as suite rooms that focus more on traditional Japanese architecture, namely that of the old-fashioned townhouse. All suite rooms have a kitchen, washer/dryer, and other convenient amenities for those looking for a longer stay, as well as for families and larger groups.
THE SHINSEN-EN Deluxe Suite
Located on the top floor, this corner suite room offers a spacious environment and enjoys plenty of natural lighting for the window which takes up an entire wall. There are both beds as well as a tatami area with futons so you can pick how you want to sleep. There’s also a roomy washroom as well as a dining space with a fully-equipped kitchen and washer dryer. The room also has a sofa, TV, refrigerator, free WiFi, and more for your convenience.
THE MACHIYA Deluxe Suite (Dragon)
This suite room has a Japanese aesthetic with its paper sliding doors and hanging scrolls. Natural light seeps in from the ceiling window fitted to the high ceiling. As well as the Japanese-style bedroom, it also has a western-style bedroom and living room, as well as both beds and futons, so you can pick if you want a Japanese sleep or a western sleep. There is a fully-equipped kitchen and washer dryer. The room also has a sofa, TV, refrigerator, free WiFi, and more for your convenience.
THE SHINSEN-EN Suite
The entrance to this suite room has lattice doors and stone paving, welcoming you with that traditional Japanese aesthetic. The spacious room basks in natural lighting from the enormous windows. There is a fully-equipped kitchen and washer dryer. The room also has a sofa, TV, refrigerator, free WiFi, and more for your convenience.
In addition to suite rooms there are four other types including Deluxe Twin, Superior Hollywood Twin, Hollywood Twin, and Classic Hollywood Twin. The rooms enjoy indigo blue and orange colouring for a relaxed and modern feel. Each have their own washrooms, toilets, sofas and desks. Additionally, all first floor rooms can be connected, so you can turn them into full 2-3 or 4-5 people spaces.
Guests can use the first floor lounge space freely and at their own leisure. And if they choose so they can also enjoy breakfast there.
The front desk staff can speak both English and Japanese so can support foreign travelers. The hotel is situated in a great place for sightseeing, so be sure to consider booking at the all-new THE MACHIYA SHINSEN-EN if travelling to Tokyo.
THE MACHIYA SHINSEN-EN
Opened: October 15, 2019
Address: 17-1 17 Shinsenencho, Nakagyo Ward, Kyoto
Access: 5-minutes on foot from Nijōjō-mae Station
Rooms: 21 (approx. 22-45㎡)
Capacity: 2-5 people
Breakfast: Served in first floor lounge for an additional fee
Official Website: https://shinsen-en.com/
This Week’s Dessert: Savouring Autumntime Matcha Sweets at ATELIER de GODIVA in Ikebukuro
One thing I do at least once a week without fail is treat myself out to some delicious food or dessert. It’s very important time well spent to ensure happiness.
I’ve been working relatively hard as of late. I had some spare time before a business meeting, so I took advantage of the occasion to treat myself to some desserts. My destination: ATELIER de GODIVA located inside Seibu Ikebukuro.
GODIVA has numerous stores throughout Tokyo, but Ikebukuro’s concept store branch has an eat-in space that’s perfect for that tea or coffee break.
ATELIER de GODIVA boasts that same level of quality when it comes to their desserts, some of which are exclusive to this branch. There are only three branches: this one in Seibu Ikebukuro (Tokyo), another in Daimaru Kyoto (Kyoto), and the last in Hakata Hankyu (Fukuoka). The cake I am showing you today is a special dessert sold only in these three branches (and is takeout only at Hakata Hankyu).
The first delight I ordered was the Mousse Matcha Cherry.
Mousse Matcha Cherry: Eat in ¥980 / Takeout ¥780 (*Matcha Ice Cream is eat-in only)
Available: Until November 26, 2019 while supplies last
The shiny cake is served on a round white plate with a dollop of matcha ice cream. The pink berry sauce is drizzled around the plate to make the plating even cuter.
Time to tuck in. This extravagant cake is supported by a fluffy matcha mousse topped with a crunchy chocolate sable. On top of that still are juicy cherries, adding a hint of freshness to the cake. The matcha glaze on the mousse has just the right amount of bitterness, which when coupled with the subtly sweet matcha mousse makes for a heavenly balance of flavours. Lined around the base of the mousse are sweet and sour dried raspberries which elevated the matcha-ness of the matcha mousse.
The matcha ice cream which it comes with when you order to eat in is rich and creamy.
I was full up after my dessert, but since I’d taken the time to come here I wanted to order a drink too… so I got a takeout Chocolixir Uji Matcha Kiwami from a shop adjoining ATELIER de GODIVA.
Chocolixir Uji Matcha Kiwami – ¥602 (*Takeout only at the GODIVA Seibu Ikebukuro branch)
This new drink is part of GODIVA’s chocolate and tea pairing series. The chefs at GODIVA have carefully selected the best varieties of tea to combine with chocolate. This one is an iced drink made with white chocolate and matcha.
It’s a mix of GODIVA’s popular smooth and sweet white chocolate and rich Uji matcha. It’s crowned with a sprinkling of bitter Uji matcha powder. All of the flavours are highlighted in this sweet drink. The crunchy white chocolate pieces you sip up as you drink are delicious. It’s the kind of drink where you’re sure to find something new each time you take a drink.
My 30-minute tea break is my little self-indulgence for the day. Spare minutes in my daily schedule affords me the chance to go and enjoy some delicious desserts. You should treat yourself to some special autumntime sweets too.
Matcha Adzuki ATELIER Tablet – ¥800
It’s important to share the happiness between family and colleagues on when you get the chance to enjoy something tasty. The present I bought today was a tablet chocolate handmade in the shop. The matcha white chocolate has almonds in it as well as Japanese-style chocolate mixed with adzuki. It has a strong matcha flavour and isn’t overly-sweet. You can also request for a ribbon to be tied around it for gift-giving. It’s a chocolate that’s sure to bring anyone joy.
Writer：Sayuri Mizuno（MOSHI MOSHI NIPPON）
Translator: Joshua Kitosi-Isanga
ATELIER de GODIVA Seibu Ikebukuro
Address: Seibu Ikebukuro B1F, 1-28-1 Minami-Ikebukuro, Toshima Ward, Tokyo
Opening Hours: [Mon-Sat] 10:00-21:00 / [Sun & Holidays] 10:00-20:00
ATELIER de GODIVA Daimaru Kyoto
Address: Daimaru Kyoto B1F, 79 Tachiuri Nishimachi, Shimogyo Ward, Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture
Opening Hours: [Mon-Sun] 10:00-20:00
ATELIER de GODIVA Hakata Hankyu
Address: Hakata Hankyu B1F, 1-1 Hakataekichūōgai, Hakata Ward, Fukuoka, Fukuoka Prefecture
Opening Hours: [Sun-Thurs] 10:00-20:00 / [Fri-Sat] 10:00-21:00
Chocolixir Uji Matcha Kiwami
Running: October 1, 2019 – November 30, 2019
GODIVA Official Website: https://www.godiva.co.jp/
Full Moon Salted Caramel & Paradigm Shift Pudding Cooked Up By firando
15.October.2019 | FOOD
Mirai Image and firand have teamed up to create a new dessert brand named “firando.” Their website launched just recently, and their first products, “MANGETSU” and “PURIORI,” were shown for the first time at the 9th Tsuhan Expo which took place on September 26-27. Sales of these two confections went live on their official website on Tuesday (October 15).
During the Edo portion of Sakoku, when Japan closed its doors to most foreign trade and foreign nationals, Hirado was called “firando” and thrived as a port for international trade. During this time, caramel, then a western-style confection, found its way to Hirado, and has since resurfaced in Hirado, Nagasaki.
“MANGETSU” is the Japanese term for full moon. This salted caramel treat is made with a very special salt: it’s taken from the sea of the beautiful Hirado Island only when the tide is high during an evening full moon. It’s also made with freshly-squeezed raw milk shipped directly from the only dairy farmer in Hirado that has been passed down the generations. The dessert is completely additive-free, using no preservatives or artificial colouring. It uses the highest quality unrefined sugar from Kagoshima Prefecture that is easy on the body, with each and every grain being accounted for in the 10-second cooking progress. The milk has a rich flavour, and the full moon salt adds a pleasant accent, resulting in a refreshing aftertaste.
The “PURIORI” is a Japanese-style pudding whose concept is “going back in time.” The concept asks, “What if you went back in time to the end of the Edo period and presented nanbangashi* to the Matsuura feudal lord?” The pudding piles together the layers of Japan’s confection culture. It’s made with rare eggs from Nagasaki Prefecture that you can’t get on the marketplace.
*Nanbangashi are a variety of Japanese sweets derived from Portugal and Spain
firanodo has whipped up some seriously special and luxurious desserts here. If you find yourself in Nagano, be sure to visit their store, and don’t forget to check out their website below.
Address: 310-2 Tsuyoshichō, Hirado, Nagasaki
Products: MANGETSU / PURIORI」
Official Website: https://firando-caramel.com/
Suiran Ranks as Japan’s Best Hotel in Condé Nast Traveler For Second Year in a Row
14.October.2019 | SPOT
“Suiran, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Kyoto” has ranked as the number one hotel in Japan for the second year in a row in the Japan’s Top Hotels category of Readers’ Choice Awards 2019 in Condé Nast Traveler.
The Condé Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards lists the world’s best travel experiences as ranked by international travellers. Over 600,000 people voted Suiran as Japan’s best hotel for the second time.
Suiran is located in Arashiyama, Kyoto and first opened in March 2015 under a brand of luxury hotels known as The Luxury Collection®. The hotel’s concept is to make full use of Arashiyama’s appeal, lauded for its deep culture and history, while paving the way to the future. It houses guests from around the world who can enjoy a view of Arashiyama’s lush natural landscape which changes beautifully with the seasons, and who can experience a fusion of the traditional and the modern while being served classic Kyoto hospitality.
Speaking about the award, the hotel’s general manager Hiroyuki Hatori said the following: “I am greatly honoured that we have been given the number one spot two years in a row in this internationally-recognised poll. To all the people in the region who continue to support Suiran, and to all our guests who use the hotel, I thank you from the bottom of my heart. These results are an incentive to further work hard with our associates to ensure this is a hotel that people will love even more.”
If you are travelling to Kyoto and looking for a place to stay, why not consider the city’s best: Suiran, a hotel which continues to pass down tradition while embracing the modern?
Suiran, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Kyoto
Address: 12 Sagatenryūji Susukinobabachō, Ukyo Ward, Kyoto
Access: 15-minutes on foot from Saga-Arashiyama Station / 6-minutes on foot from Arashiyama Station via Keifuku Electric Railroad / 15-minutes on foot from Arashiyama Station via the Hankyu Arashiyama Line
Royal Park Hotel Tokyo Transforms For Halloween 2019
11.October.2019 | FOOD
Royal Park Hotel Tokyo in Nihonbashi has begun its Halloween festivities for 2019, including a bone-chilling black and orange food and dessert menu, spooky decorations, a photo spot in the first floor main lobby, and more.
Check out their mouth-watering sweets assortment! Their Halloween Afternoon Tea set is packed full of autumntime flavours, from the glass desserts, to the apple chiboust, chocolate pocket watches with bats on them, adorable monster burgers, and more.
The hotel is also offering a Halloween Dinner Buffet on weekends and holidays decorated in Halloween colours. Pile your tray with figs and blackcurrants, chestnut mousse, pumpkin tarts, and plenty of other tasty treats, all prepared fresh in the kitchen.
This is just a peek into the hair-raising fun happening right now at Royal Park Hotel Tokyo. There’s also the Halloween Cocktail Fair, Halloween Sweets & Bread event, and much more.
Spend your Halloween here, or even use it as an opportunity to try wearing your Halloween costume out so you’re ready for October 31!
Halloween Afternoon Tea
Running: October 1, 2019 – October 31, 2019
Location: Fontaine (Floor 1F Lobby Lounge)
Price: ¥4,840 Per Person (Tax Included)
Halloween Dinner Buffet (Weekends & Holidays Only)
Running: October 5, 2019 – October 27, 2019
Location: Symphony (Floor 1F Lobby Lounge)
Price: ¥7,260 Per Person (Tax Included) / Seniors ¥6,050 Per Person (Tax Included)
*¥4,235 Per Person (Tax Included) for those aged 4-12 years and 65+
Halloween Cocktail Fair
Running: October 1, 2019 – October 31, 2019
Location: Fontaine (Floor 1F Lobby Lounge) / Royal Scots (Floor B1F Main Bar)
Price: ¥1,936 Per Person (Tax Included)
Halloween Sweets & Bread
Running: October 1, 2019 – October 31, 2019
Location IKI (Floor 1F Sweets & Bakery)
Royal Park Hotel Tokyo
Address: 2-1-1 Nihonbashikakigarachō, Chuo Ward, Tokyo
Official Website: https://www.rph.co.jp/
Kyoto Station’s Beautiful Cafe Saryo Fukucha Releases New Herb Tea and Dessert Sets & Autumn Menu
Saryo Fukucha has unveiled new Japanese herb tea and dessert pairing sets as well as a batch of seasonal autumntime menu items.
Kyoto is a city where history and tradition come together, and where every single day, people from all around the world come and go, each encountering new experiences. Saryo Fukucha opened inside Kyoto Station back in April this year. It is managed by long-running tea company Fukujuen.
▼Japanese Herb Tea & Dessert Pairing Menu
Herb Tea & Dessert Sets: ¥900 Each (Before Tax) *Herb teas by themselves are ¥500 each
Running: From October 10, 2019 (Available all year round)
Hibiscus Blend Houjicha x Crème Brûlée Chocolate Berry Confiture
The tea is a luxurious and fragrant blend of light-roasted houjicha, hibiscus and rose hip. It’s perfectly paired with a rich chocolate crème brûlée and refreshing berry confiture.
Cinnamon Blend Kukicha x Mascarpone Cream & Apple Tatin
This kukicha, or twig tea, has a distinct refreshing flavour to it. It has been blended beautifully with cinnamon and chamomile. The kukicha is paired with a caramelised apple tatin which is topped with a dollop of rich mascarpone.
Peppermint Blend Kukicha x Seasonal Fruit Tart
Peppermint and chamomile are the blending ingredients for this kukicha tea. It comes with a tart with a full-bodied almond taste topped with seasonal fruits like strawberries and raspberries.
Ginger Blend Genmaicha x Tart Ricotta with Orange
Genmaicha is combined with roasted brown rice, giving it its characteristic sweet-smelling quality. Blended with ginger and dandelion leaves, it’s been matched with a fromage blanc cream-topped ricotta cheese tart with a side of orange.
Running: October 10, 2019 – Late February 2020 (subject to change)
Sasamaki Okowa (Matsutake Mushroom & Daggertooth Pike Conger/Minced Chicken & Yama no Sachi) Houjicha Set – ¥1,200 (Before Tax)
This set was created by Hisato Nakahigashi from Miyamasou, a highly-rated inn in Kyoto. Enjoy the combination of the houjicha tea with the bamboo leaf-wrapped okowa steamed rice.
Chestnut Houjicha Wafer Cake – ¥350 (Before Tax)
Not only does this wafer cake look cute, it’s packed full of autumnal ingredients too, including astringent chestnut and coarse sweet red bean paste.
FUKUCHA Specially Made Matcha Koji Sweet Sake Red Bean Soup – ¥700 (Before Tax)
The koji sweet sake used in this dessert has a gentle flavour and a strong aroma. Added to it is matcha, chestnuts, sweet potato, and rice flour dumplings, all set into a mizu manju sweet water jelly.
Japanese confections are always best paired with Japanese tea, so be sure to stop by Saryo Fukucha when travelling around Kyoto.
Address: Kyoto Station Central Exit Floor 2F (901 Higashishiokoujicho, Shiokouji Sagaru, Karasuma-dori, Shimogyo Ward, Kyoto)
Opening Hours: 8:30-21:00 (Last Orders 20:30)
No Fixed Holidays
Official Website: https://fukucha-fukujuen.com/
isetan Urban Market KYOTO: Big Name Brands to Gather Inside a Traditional Kyoto Townhouse
isetan Urban Market is a popular fashion store located inside LUCUA 1100, an apparel building directly connected to the JR side of Osaka Station. The shop is set to depart Osaka and head northeast to a traditional townhouse in Kyoto where it will open a new store named isetan Urban Market KYOTO which will open on October 12 for a limited time.
“Have Fun, Be Happy” is the concept of this shop, where a diverse range of items from some of Japan’s popular brands will be sold including clothing, accessories, food lingerie, cosmetics, and more.
More than half of these brands are setting up shop in Kyoto for the first time
A long list of brand names will make an appearance at the pop-up shop, such as little $uzie and ch!iii which are huge at isetan Urban Market, as well as other talked-about brands like MALION vintage, Paso, Celvoke, and many more.
The shop will also see the likes of BELPER, an up-and-coming brand established by Yuichi Ozaki who won the top prize at the Bilbao International Competition. A confectionery store from Shizuoka will also make an appearance which is so popular it has people lining up outside it two hours before opening.
ASOKO is selling the above-pictured line “TODAY AND.” made exclusively for Kyoto.
FARMAN KITCHEN MARKET
As well as designers, Osaka’s fruit and vegetable store FARMAN KITCHEN MARKET will also be in attendance selling produce from contracted farmers from around Japan. There will also be a fruit and vegetable market on October 13 and 27 where sandwiches and other delicious foods will be sold.
Tradition and contemporary come together at the townhouse
Visitors will be able to relax and enjoy a mix of traditional and contemporary design at the townhouse, including with its garden and courtyard. The design was carried out by NOTA&design which is managed by NOTA_SHOP, a select shop in Shigaraki, Nagano.
Enjoy a fun and relaxing time this autumn at isetan Urban Market KYOTO.
isetan Urban Market KYOTO
Location: 355 Rokkakuchō, Nakagyo Ward, Kyoto
Access: Roughly 5-minutes on foot from Shijō Station, Karasuma Oike Station, and Karasuma Station
*No car parking or bicycle space. Please arrive using public transport including bus or train
Date: October 12, 2019 – November 4, 201
*Closed Mondays, holidays, October 15, October 21, and October 2019
Official Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/isetanurbanmarketkyoto/
Top 6 Desserts Made With Luxurious Pink Ruby Chocolate
Ruby chocolate is a variety of chocolate that was introduced in 2017 as the 4th main type of chocolate alongside milk, white and dark. It didn’t hit Japan until October 2018, but since then, the luxury pink delight has been getting much love with the release of many new products. The ruby colour of the cocoa beans is completely natural.
I attended a product conference held by Barry Callebaut, the Belgian-Swiss chocolate company which introduced ruby chocolate to the world. I got to try out various confections made using this chocolate.
When talking about ruby chocolate, you’re inclined to highlight its striking pink colour. But the looks are just part of the story. Compared to dark, white and milk chocolate, ruby chocolate is said to have the strongest cacao fruit flavour. Though it’s chocolate, it has a sour, fruity kind of taste.
Until last year, I was more about the eye-catching pink colour of the chocolate, so I ended up overlooking that ruby chocolate is often paired with berry-type fruits when it comes to confections. I get it nowーso it has a sour taste? Well then, this year I really want to go all out and appreciate the unique flavour of this ruby chocolate.
Today, I’m going to showcase six new products made with Callebaut® Ruby Chocolate. I’ve tried them all, so I can properly break down the flavours and how delicious they are for you!
Ruby Chocolate Otabe – ¥660 (Before Tax)
This Japanese confection is a combination of ruby chocolate and “Otabe,” which is a confection known as “yatsuhashi,” a popular souvenir sweet from Kyoto. Much time is put into making the ganache to ensure the fruitiness of the ruby chocolate remains intact. The ganache is wrapped in chewy yatsuhashi which is made with domestic koshihikari, which is a type of rice, and carefully selected water. There’s no way this could be anything short of delicious!
At the taste-testing session, I got to see the ruby chocolate Otabe being made right in front of me. It was done by a kimono-clad Nara who normally makes confections in the factory.
The rich and sour ganache combined with the chewy yatsuhashi is a match made in heaven! The pink colour really is cute after all, isn’t it? By wrapping the fruity chocolate in mochi, it creates even deeper flavours in your mouth.
This product will be sold at Kyoto Station and various tourist sites around Kyoto, so if you ever visit the city, make sure you’re on the lookout.
Ruby Chocolate Otabe
Running: October 11, 2019 – Early May 2020
Available: At Kyoto Station and tourist spots around Kyoto
Official Website: http://www.otabe.kyoto.jp/
Ruby Mille-feuille – ¥600 (Before Tax)
From Juchheim comes these ruby chocolate-coated mille-feuille fingers, laced with butter from Hokkaido and strawberry and raspberry mixed cream layered into a crunchy sandwich.
The puff pastry is of course tasty, and the sour flavour of the ruby chocolate mixed with the sourness of the berry cream packs a seriously fruity punch. It’s an overall crunchy and rich dessert, but it also has a refreshing taste to it, so one person is sure to be tempted by more than one.
Released: October 1, 2019 (Online orders from October 8, 2019 )
Available: At all 272 branches of Juchheim in Japan / Juchheim Premium Online Shop
Online Shop: https://e-shop.juchheim.co.jp/
Pretzel Cookie – ¥480 Each (Before Tax)
Food company Rosenheim have taken their crunchy butter pretzel cookies and coated them in various chocolate flavours, including ruby, sweet, milk, and white.
The ruby pretzels have that distinct vivid pink colour and of course taste fruity. There’s six in a pack, so you can share them with friends.
Released: September 20, 2019
Available: At mass retailers across Japan
Christmas Wreath Ruby Framboise – ¥5,000 (Before Tax)
Callebaut’s new ruby chocolate iced cake will be released from Maison Givrée. It’s topped with a ruby chocolate and raspberry ice cream and is adorned with cool and refreshing lychee sorbet.
The best way to eat this cake is when the ice cream has melted a little bit. You can enjoy the sweet fragrance of the ruby chocolate and the marriage between its sour flavour and the raspberry. Try savouring the melted sorbet and ruby chocolate ice cream by leaving it in your mouth.
Christmas Wreath Ruby Framboise
Running: October 11, 2019 – December 13, 2019
Delivery Window: December 20, 2019 – December 25, 2019 (subject to change)
Available: At Maison Givrée and its online store
Official Website: https://givreetokyo.shop-pro.jp/
Ruby Chocolate Corn Puffs – One Box ¥1,450 (Tax Included)
You can pick up a box of these ruby chocolate corn puffs at Pierre Gagnaire Pains et Gateaux on the 2nd floor of InterContinental ANA Hotel Tokyo. They have a shiny pink pearl-like appearance. The crunchy corn puffs are thick-cut which goes well with that fruity ruby chocolate taste.
Ruby Chocolate Pear Tart – ¥650 (Tax Included)
These cocoa-laced and ruby chocolate powdered baked tarts are also sold at Pierre Gagnaire Pains et Gateaux. They’re topped with almond cream and a pear compote. They’re also topped with a ganache made from ruby chocolate and a redcurrant puree. Their design is made so that it looks like a flower, crowned with extra redcurrants.
Ruby Chocolate Corn Puffs
Running: All year round
Ruby Chocolate Pear Tart
Running: October 1, 2019 – January 14, 2020
Available: Pierre Gagnaire Pains et Gateaux (InterContinental ANA Hotel Tokyo – Floor 2F)
Hotel Official Website: https://anaintercontinental-tokyo.jp/en/
I’m all about ruby chocolate’s deep flavour now. If you’ve yet to try it then you’ve got to get your hands on some, to enjoy both its striking pink appearance and that sour cacao fruit flavour.
Writer: Sayuri Mizuno (MOSHI MOSHI NIPPON)
Translator: Joshua Kitosi-Isanga