Sunday, June 16, 2013
Minamoto Kitchoan- Manhattan, New York
For the longest time, I always wanted to try traditional Japanese confectionery sweets called wagashi. I heard various opinions, with some people trying some varieties that were rather bland, and others saying it was too sweet, or they liked the different textures. So I tried it with really not knowing what to expect. However, just about all wagashi is decorated, because they're meant for occasions, usually, and vary from hand sized items to smaller hand held items.
Anyways, I heard a lot of people recommend Minamoto Kitchoan, and I finally got the chance to visit them on the 8th. (They're moving to a new location in Manhattan, so the place won't look the same in a few weeks.) I bought a red bean filled wagashi, a peach flavored one, and some fruit gummies that they sold on the side. The fruit flavored candies were decorative, but I don't think they're wagashi, just fancy sweets. The red bean one was very sweet and had a gelatin texture to it; I really liked it. I thought the peach would be harder, but it was just as soft and chewable, and it really tasted like peach! That was one thing I noticed, because the sweets use the actual fruit flavorings, it tastes like the actual flavor too, not like artificial flavors.
The gummies were sweetened fruit chews that you can buy from a European or ethnic sweets shops; it tasted good, but I had the sense that I tasted it before. I had a great first experience with Wagashi; they're sweet, but light, and really soft, and the prices weren't as bad as I thought. (One item ran about $2.50 a piece, depending on what it was.) If you want to try wagashi, I will say try it at Minamoto, all of their goods are great quality.~