exceptional (156)
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Pxl 20201213 051702769

Nanaya Aoyama Matcha (7) and Roasted Rice Tea Ice Cream: Nanaya Aoyama is a small ice cream shop near Omote-Sando in Tokyo and had been on my checklist of places to try for Tasty Snacking since before I arrived in Japan. Its menu features matcha ice cream at different levels of concentration, from 1-7, with 7 being the most potent (they claim it's the strongest in the world). On display, you see how matcha ice cream 1-7 goes from a light shamrock color to a dark forest green (though there isn't too much difference visually between #5-7). The ice... (read more) 4.5/5.0

exceptional icecream tokyo japan greentea nanayaaoyama matcha (7) roasted rice tea ice cream 4.5
Pxl 20201206 064142183

Shake Shack Black sesame milkshake: I hadn't been to a Shake Shack in Japan and stumbled upon one near Meiji Jingu, where I went to see the yellow autumn ginko trees. I stopped in to see if they had any exclusives, and their menu features a Japan-only black sesame shake. It was super satisfying on multiple levels: thicker than anything I've found in Japan, with a nutty and savory black sesame flavor that didn't taste at all artificial. Black sesame is one of my favorite flavors; I've had a lot of black sesame snacks over the ... (read more) 4.0/5.0

exceptional japanese drinks blacksesame shakeshack black sesame milkshake 4.0
Pxl 20201024 075258471

Yamayoshi Ippudo Ramen Chips: These tonkotsu ramen pork-flavored chips caught my eye at my local Aeon grocery store / konbini before I even knew they were from the popular ramen chain Ippudo. The special flavor is in celebration of Ippudo's 35th birthday. I went to Ippudo about a decade ago in NYC, and a branch opened up in Berkeley right as I move away from the Bay Area. I knew that the restaurant inspired long lines in the US, but the other day, while walking through Ikebukuro in Tokyo, I stumbled upon a queue outsi... (read more) 4.5/5.0

exceptional chips aeon japanese yamayoshi ippudo ramen 4.5
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三都屋商事 豆せいぞろい Rice Cracker Mix: I've always loved Japanese rice crackers, and these are the most colorful and delicious variety I've had. The rice balls are all glazed with soy and each contain a single roasted peanut; this mix has a variety of surprising flavors – some are covered in toasted sesame seeds, others with flecks of nori mixed with a seafood flavor reminding me of a milder shrimp cracker, my favorite almost looks like it's covered in moss, with a deep seaweed flavor, and there's even one that is slightly sweet... (read more) 5.0/5.0

exceptional japanese seijoishii 豆せいぞろい rice cracker mix 5.0
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Chokai Kogen La France Pear Yogurt: A local grocery store offers this unique yogurt made in Yamagata Prefecture, Japan. The 400g mini tubs of yogurt (offering around 3 servings) consists of two layers: a base layer of yogurt that is smooth and acidic, and a layer of fruit compote that sits on top. The first flavor I bought was the La France flavor, which is a type of pear from Yamagata I hadn't heard about before. Looking up more information on the pear, it looks a bit like a D'Anjou pear, but here it's been cooked down to ... (read more) 4.5/5.0

exceptional japanese naniwaya chokaikogen la france pear yogurt 4.5
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福丸饅頭 Kusa Daifuku : This mochi is from a small confectionary shop in Yanaka, Tokyo that serves a variety of fresh, seasonal mochi. I purchased this green mochi thinking it was matcha-flavored, but it’s actually made of mugwort, a type of medicinal plant of Chinese origin. It has a slightly bitter flavor that’s not at all sweet, like a mix of spinach and peppery parsley. It reminds me of a green smoothie in that people would enjoy it as a dessert, but it’s mostly savory. The texture of the mochi was perfect ... (read more) 5.0/5.0

exceptional japanese mochi kusa daifuku 5.0