A roundup of Japan’s seasonal Sakura eats & drinks
Spring is in the air already in certain parts of Japan, and for other spots it's just around the corner - which means a couple of things! Japan's much loved cherry blossoms are not too far away, and sakura flavored everything starts turning up on convenience store and supermarket shelves. Want to know about some of the goodies you can get your hands on? Keep reading!
Country Ma'am Sakura Cookies
These cookies are textural perfection - a crunch on the outside, but with soft centers. They've also got white chocolate pieces inside, adding to the sweetness. These small packets were at 7-11 for 100 yen + tax, but you often find larger packets at supermarkets.
One of the most well known sakura inspired treats is sakura mochi. Take a pink hued rice cake, pop some anko (red bean paste) in the middle, and top the outer with a cherry blossom. Often, instead of the cherry blossom you'll also see them wrapped in a pickled cherry blossom leaf.
Sakura Caramel Milk with mixed berries
As well as offering sakura goodies at their stores, Starbucks also have a convenience store sakura beverage that you can get your hands on. This year's is a sakura caramel milk, with mixed berries. These were at my local 7-11 convenience store.
Mochi Covered Ganache Chocolate
These little chocolates come in a variety of flavors (they've had a regular chocolate ganache, and a sweet potato kind back in the fall). This time around they've followed the sakura lead. The outer is a mochi shell, and inside is a tasty ganache that melts in your mouth. Each packet like this has 8 pieces (4 pieces in two individually wrapped packets - so they're good to share with a travel buddy!)
Sakura Infused Jelly
Lawson convenience stores have this beauty on offer - a sakura infused jelly, or as it often gets marketed as, a "water cake". It comes complete with a cherry blossom and gold powder finishes, and looks every bit the photogenic, Instagrammable dessert (at a bargain price, no less!)
Specially packaged Asahi Beer cans
Sure, this might not be sakura infused beer, but if you like limited time only packaging then this is one to pick up if you fancy a tipple. These cans come in both a 350ml and 500ml variety - the 350ml will set you back 205 yen plus tax, and the 500ml is 265 yen plus tax.
Starbucks (instore) Sakura Strawberry latte
Starbucks tends to do some kind of sakura release annually, complete with a range of sakura emblazoned goodies like mugs and tumblers that you can buy in store. This year's drink is a sakura strawberry latte, combining two seasonal faves at this time of year. There's also a cold version - the Sakura Strawberry Pink Mochi Frappuccino, if you're after something icy rather than hot.
Reminiscent of a choux pastry, the sakura moko is filled with a mousse-like cream that is light, fluffy, and has the perfect hit of sweetness. These are priced at 130 yen plus tax.
Haagen Dazs Sakura Mochi An Ice Cream
This ice cream combines several Japanese favorites! Sakura ice cream is combined with mochi, and then topped with a sakura/red bean paste mix and a sakura syrup. You'll find them in the freezer section of most convenience stores (these were at 7-11).
There tends to be some kind of pocky variety released to coincide with sakura season, and here are this year's offering! The box itself looks pretty glamorous, and the serving size is a little larger than usual (hence the more expensive price, too). Pocky tend to make popular souvenirs to bring back home for family and friends, so if you'll be here in the next couple of months, be on the lookout!
If you're in Japan during the lead up to sakura season, be sure to check out those shelves for some tasty limited time only treats!
Enjoy Japan, and Happy Eating!
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There are currently a number of seasonal sakura inspired eats and drinks on store shelves - from Sakura pocky to Sakura ice cream and loads more. If you fancy