Here Are the Best Places to Try Warabi Mochi in Kyoto

They're made with 100% warabiko, so you're sure to get quality taste.


Craving something sweet? Lucky for you, there’s no shortage of delectable confections in Japan. Warabi mochi, a Japanese jelly-like confection made from bracken starch called warabiko, is usually served with kinako, sweet roasted soybean flour. Here are stores where you can try handpicked warabiko and kinako made with quality ingredients. Enjoy the freshness you can only taste at these spots.


Gion Tokuya


Gion Tokuya
is a confectionery that makes traditional Japanese sweets with carefully selected local ingredients such as premium hon-warabiko (100% pure warabiko) and Dainagon Azuki from Tamba area. Each table has a stove where you can grill the mochi that comes with the zenzai, a sweet red bean soup, making your dining experience more interesting.


Tokuya’s Hon-warabi Mochi
(¥1,250)


Freshly made warabi mochi is soft and chewy. Once you have a bite, you can’t get enough of it. Warabiko mainly comes from Minami Kyushu area.


Hon-warabiko becomes sticky immediately after it is poured in a pot and briskly mixed.


Matcha Hon-kuzumochi
(¥1,250). Hon-kuzu (pure arrowroot) from Yoshino’s Hon-kuzu, full-flavored green tea from Ryuoen Tea Store, and Wasanbon sugar are used in this delicacy.


The owner, Shougo Yamauchi, explains, “In making warabi mochi, we thoroughly knead local hon-warabiko and Wasanbon sugar for an elegant taste. The customers can add two types of blended kinako and lightly sweetened homemade kuromitsu (brown sugar syrup) as they like.”


Both the first and second floors have tables where you can dine comfortably.


Gion Tokuya is located at 570-127 Gionmachi Minamigawa, Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto City. It is open from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. daily (schedules may vary). You may contact them at +81-75-561-5554. It is a 3-minute walk from Keihan Gion Shijo Station.


Chakoubou Nagatake


After years of getting acquainted with the world of tea, the owner opened Chakoubou Nagatake to let more people know about tea. A variety of handmade sweets combined with abundantly used premium tea leaves are gems that can only be tasted here.


Matcha Warabi Mochi Tea Set
(¥1,500)


This warabi mochi is carefully done with plenty of high-quality matcha. A unique chewy, gooey texture and the bittersweet flavor of matcha fills your mouth once you’ve taken a bite.


The kinako feels similar to an aromatic powdered sugar, just with a more fluffy body, which makes it distinctive.


Matcha Anmitsu
(¥1,100 ala carte, ¥1,650 tea set) is served with homemade matcha ice cream


“What sets us apart from the rest is the kinako. We also use black soybean from Tamba area, which has an off white color with a smooth texture, and a gentle sweetness to it. Although we call our store a teahouse, please feel free to come in casually,” Nagatake Shunzo, the owner, says.

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Mr. Nagatake explains the appeal of tea to first-timers in a friendly manner that is easy to understand, so take the opportunity to sit on the counter seats.


Chakoubou Nagatake is located at 1898 Zaimokucho, Pontocho-dori Sanjo sagaru, Nakagyo Ward, Kyoto City. It is open from 1 p.m. to 10 p.m. daily except Wednesdays (schedules may vary). You may contact them at +81-75-213-4608. It is a 5-minute walk from Keihan Sanjo Station.


Eirakuya


Established in 1946, Eirakuya is a famous tsukudani (food boiled in soy sauce) and Japanese sweets shop. On the second floor cafe space, you can try their original menu created with careful consideration using top of the line matcha and kuromitsu made with Hateruma brown sugar from Okinawa.


Fresh Warabi Mochi
(¥1,500 with green tea). Limited to 15 servings per day.


Hon-warabiko is 100% used in this mochi and it takes 20 minutes to prepare after taking your order. The gooey yet smooth texture is definitely irresistible. Since they only have limited servings of this, it’s best to go earlier in the day, so you can try it.


Hon-warabiko from Minami Kyushu area, which has been considered a rare ingredient in recent years, is used generously.


Shiratama Kinako
(¥820 with green tea)


“We like to keep the original flavor and the dark color of hon-warabiko in our products. The bittersweet taste of warabi mochi is a perfect match to the local brand kinako and Hateruma kuromitsu that we use. Green tea with a good balance of deep, savory, and bitter flavor is also popular,” a staff member explains.


The cafe space has high ceilings supported by tall beams that give off a modern Japanese style interior


Eirakuya is located at 2F Eirakuya Head Shop, Higashigawa, Kawaramachi-dori Shijo agaru, Nakagyo Ward, Kyoto City. It is open from 12 p.m. to 7 p.m. daily. You may contact them at +81-75-221-2318. It is right outside Hankyu Kyoto-Kawaramachi Station.


Salon de Muge


Salon de Muge
is a teahouse opened by famous Kyoto cuisine restaurant, Kikunoi Honten. They serve monthly desserts available in Kikunoi Honten and matcha parfait made with matcha of the highest grade here, letting you enjoy the flavor of Kikunoi in a casual manner. Warabi mochi freshly made with only the purest ingredients is a must try!


Warabi Mochi freshly made in Salon de Muge
(¥1,600)


Warabi mochi is made exclusively with hon-warabiko. Each serving is kneaded after ordering and served warm, so you can experience the thickness and gummy-like texture of fresh mochi. Can’t beat freshly-made!

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You can enjoy the authentic flavor of warabi in the thickness of warabi mochi.


“Customers can enjoy the original flavor of hon-warabiko that goes down smoothly like no other. They can choose the kinako and the kuromitsu that were created with trial and error, and the cacao sauce and cacao powder too,” the chef says.


A landscaped garden made colorful by cherry blossoms in spring, fresh green leaves in summer, and Japanese maple in fall can be viewed from every seat in the cafe.


Salon de Muge is located at 524 Washiocho, Shimokawara-dori Kodaiji Kitamon-mae, Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto City. Shigure bento is available from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. (reservations necessary) and the cafe is open from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. daily except the first and third Tuesdays of the month. You may contact Kikunoi Main Store at +81-75-561-0015 for more information. It is a 20-minute walk from Keihan Gion Shijo Station.


Provided by Japan Walker™, Walkerplus™, and Kansai Walker™ (21 February 2020)


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