- 3 Chome-27-11 Asagaya-kita, Suginami-ku, Tokyo
- Distance from Station:
- 10 minutes on foot from JR Asagaya Station, North exit
- 03-5327-8171 (Japanese only)
- 10:00am - 8:00pm, Closed Sundays
- https://kajin-yuto.crayonsite.net/ (external link)
- Staff speak Japanese only
Combining Traditions with New, Colorful Ideas
[published February 2023]
A 10-minute stroll from JR Asagaya Station down Matsuyama-dori Street, brings you to the cozy wagashi Japanese sweets shop, Kajin Yuto. Look for the red bench out front (where anyone, including non-customers can feel free to sit). Asagaya is a town known for its wagashi, which makes the location a welcome one, but also a particular challenge is that Kajin Yuto was opened in 2014 by a young Japanese confectioner in a town of long-standing wagashi veterans. What sets Kajin Yuto apart from the others is its new and unique take on wagashi, introducing pastel colored monaka wafers with various flavored sweet bean jam paste, and the mix of western flavors such as rum raisin or coffee and chocolate into its yokan bean jams. All the sweets are prepared with deep care by the owner, Mr. Takahashi.
With particular attention paid to the ingredients, Takahashi-san selects domestic azuki red beans free from chemical production, as well as eggs and wheat flour from carefully selected domestic providers. You can taste the goodness of the azuki bean jam in many of the more traditional Japanese sweets such as the ever-popular daifuku (220 – 250 yen), with a softer mochi rice cake shell than other wagashi shops, or the dorayaki (240 yen), that sandwiches the sweet red bean paste between its fluffy cake-like pancakes with rich honey flavor. The pie-manju (240 yen) also contains red bean paste or chestnut paste packed in a flaky pie crust. As for the more unique selections, Takahashi-san’s “Omoide wa Sepia Iro” (literally “Memories are Sepia Colored”, 300 yen) is a triple-flavor yokan jam with the flavors of coffee, chocolate and whiskey—his own concoction for which he won an award. There are other unique yokan jams available, such as brown sugar flavor with dried fig and rum raisin. The pastel-colored heart monaka wafers have shiroan (sweet white bean paste) fillings mixed with five different flavors: matcha, cinnamon, (condensed) milk, chocolate, and coconut. They are available individually or in a set (1300 yen for 5 or 2300 yen for 10), and make great Valentine’s gifts or souvenirs!
If you enjoy Japanese sweets, or even if you are not partial to typical Japanese sweets, Kajin Yuto may be up your alley to try some new and delicious, yet tried-and-true wagashi.
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