Sakura, or cherry blossoms, are some of the most well-loved of Japanese icons. Their light pink blossoms bloom for less than a week, causing visitors foreign and Japanese alike to rush outside and take in their delicate and romantic beauty.
What many abroad don’t know, however, is how delightful sakura can be on the taste buds! With a delicate aromatic flavor between cherry and plum, this ancient natural garnish flavors all sorts of sweets, both traditionally and from intrepid new bakers.
From now until the 31st, Daimaru Hoppe Town will host the best of these treats in their Sakura Sweets Fair, helping you celebrate this time-honored tradition of enjoying the flowers with your taste buds. Bring back some sweets for your family and friends, or just for yourself, to evoke the memory of your trip. One bite and you’ll see why this sweet has lasted centuries.
1. Sakura Baumkuchen (710 yen for one long slice)
For those unfamiliar with Baumkuchen, this German cake is made by painting meticulously thin cake layers over a rotating spit. This incredible technique is an art in and of itself, with layer upon layer of tender crumb. Nenrinya’s version then soaks the Baumkuchen in a sakura-steeped syrup for a moist yet delicate cake meant for savoring slowly.
2. N.Y. Sakura Cherry Caramel Sando (1620 yen for a box of 8)
Sandos are a popular sweet in Japan, made by sandwiching a sweet, sticky, buttery filling between two sable cookies. The NYC version combines the flower and the fruit by adding both sakura blossoms and cherries to the caramel filling. The sweet-tart flavor of the cherry and the blossom’s more delicate floral nature are rarely combined, and this buttery, tart, sticky cookie will surely become one of your new tastiest treats.
3. Sakura Okoshi (464 yen per small package)
This old-fashioned sweet is still a beloved schoolyard snack for kids. Made by combining delicious creamy peanuts with crunchy puffed rice balls (much like a Rice Krispie treat), this favorite gets an adult spin. Kagurazaka Zaryo uses a special technique in which sakura leaves are steeped in the syrup that binds the nuts and rice together, for just a hint of festive flavor.
4. Sakura Saku-ku Tokyo Banana (1080 yen/pack of 8)
Tokyo Banana are some of the most popular souvenir snacks, and their cherry blossom flavor does not disappoint. These perfectly portioned cakes have a creamy banana custard center, surrounded by a sakura-printed sponge. Not only does the sakura sponge have the classic five petaled design, but it also is baked with cherry blossom essence, for a taste you can see.
5. Sasaragata Sakura (1 bar for 259 yen)
Ryoguchiya Seisei is known for its elevated and elegant versions of Japanese sweets, and this sakura sweets bar is no exception. These refined sweets combine the beloved more textured tsubu-an, or whole-red bean paste, with light and crunchy rice flour dots lining its edges. The combination of flavors and textures are vastly more than they appear, and the beautiful presentation means you’ll be proud to give this to anyone.
6. Sakura Domyouji (160 yen per piece)
This other sweet is one of the most classic seasonal mochi treats in Japan (and one of my personal favorites). The combination of the red bean-intact tsubu an, the chewy cherry-scented sticky rice, and the salty bite of the pickled cherry leaf make it like nothing you’ve ever had before. Iseya’s fresh mochi delights and inspires, and is not to be missed by any traveler.
7. Sakura Mont Blanc (594 yen per individual cake)
The French and the Japanese have always loaned from each other in the world of pastry, and this Sakura Mont Blanc is no exception. Made by celebrated Kobe patisserie Antenor, this little mountain starts with a layer of dacquoise, followed by a sweet strawberry confiture and a pink sakura and red bean paste cream. Sakura jelly and a real sakura blossom are then added on top for a final flush of sakura sweet flavor.
8. Hikura Sakura (1580 yen for an 18-piece box)
These sweet pink sandwich cookies are the perfect office giveaway-- with lots of little cookies, each is shaped like a petal of a sakura blossom. This classic langue-du-chat and white chocolate combo is popular in Japan, but here it gets a seasonal upgrade. Ginza Tamaya sandwiches crispy, buttery pink langue du chat cookie with whipped chocolate that has been mixed with real cherry blossoms for a crisp and satisfying little cookie.
No matter what you choose, you’d better hurry-- the sales last only until March 31st, and once they’re out, they’re out! This amazing range of sweets can sometimes go fast, so get yourself down to Daimaru Tokyo (on the first floor) and see for yourself how amazing sakura season can be!
1-9-1, Marunouchi, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, 100-6701
Tokyo Station （Tokaido Shinkansen Line / Hokkaido Shinkansen Line / Tohoku Shinkansen Line / Akita Shinkansen Line / Yamagata Shinkansen Line / Joetsu Shinkansen Line / Hokuriku Shinkansen Line / JR Tokaido Main Line / JR Yokosuka Line / JR Sobu Main Line / JR Sobu Main Line (Rapid) / JR Keihin-Tohoku Line / JR Yamanote Line / JR Chuo Main Line / JR Keiyo Line / JR Ueno Tokyo Line / Tokyo Metro Marunouchi Line）
1 minute on foot
- Phone Number 03-3212-8011
- Address 1-9-1, Marunouchi, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, 100-6701
Written by HanaSara Ito
*Prices and options mentioned are subject to change.
*Unless stated otherwise, all prices include tax.
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