OTABE: Kyogashi o-tabe kudasai!

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Sakura yatsuhashi by Otabe (Japanese and English sites)

O-tabe (おたべ) is a casual, Japanese way of saying “please eat this”. In our recent March/April 2016 publication, we featured Otabe, a shop that sells delicious kyogashi (京菓子, Kyoto sweets) and we thought you just had to know more about them.

According to Otabe, the secret to delicious kyogashi is koshihikari rice, Hokkaido red beans, and prized spring water from Uriwari. This magical trio gives Otabe’s sweets a soft texture so tasty that you want more.

While Otabe has an online shop for easy access to these yummy sweets, they do not ship overseas. So don’t miss the chance to buy their sweets in stores as they are exclusively located in Kyoto! You can check out the locations of their stores here. Do also try their seasonal sweets before they are sold out.

5 kyogashi you must try!

#1 Otabe (traditional)

Traditional yatsuhashi
Traditional yatsuhashi—Green tea (top), Cinnamon (bottom). From ¥500 (10 pieces)

This famous yatsuhashi is a must-try confectionary if you are in Kyoto. The traditional yatsuhashi is unbaked and comes in two traditional flavours of cinnamon and green tea, packed with lightly mashed red bean into this dainty triangle. The sweetness of the red bean is just right, mixing well with the refreshing scent of cinnamon or green tea.

Other new mainstays include strawberry, chocolate, sesame, and green tea. If you are in Kyoto during Spring, do try their sakura flavour as well!

#2 Nama Yatsuhashi and Yatsuhashi

Unbaked yatsuhashi (left) and baked yatsuhashi (right)
Unbaked yatsuhashi, ¥600 (24 pieces) (left) and baked yatsuhashi, ¥650 (16 pieces) (right)

 You can also get just the skin of the yatsuhashi at Otabe. The nama yatsuhashi (生八つ橋, unbaked yatsuhashi) is unbaked skin made with rice flour, and has a soft texture. The baked yatsuhashi has a light crunch and also comes in three different flavours of chocolate, green tea, and strawberry.

#3 Kyo Machiya Cake

The layers of nama yatsuhashi-red bean-cake looks so yummy!
The layers of nama yatsuhashi-red bean-cake looks so yummy! From ¥760 (4 pieces)

Otabe creates a new twist by layering nama yatsuhashi with cake, green tea ganache, and red bean filling. The different textures in this green-tea-flavoured Kyo Machiya Cake sounds simply delightful and too tempting not to try.

 #4 Yatsuhashi Crunch

Crunchy and sweet yatsuhashi
Crunchy and sweet yatsuhashi, from ¥320 (9 pieces)

The Yatsuhashi Crunch is an original creation by Otabe. Baked yatsuhashi is crushed and coated with either green tea or chocolate. This bite-sized goodies also have the cute face of Otabe-chan, the mascot.

#5 Kyo Baum Series

Kyo Baum Chocolate
Kyo Baum Chocolate, ¥650 ( 7 pieces)

The Kyo Baum Series includes the Kyo Baum Chocolate and the Kyo Baum Sable. The white and green rings of chocolate are made with Uji green tea and soy milk chocolate which melts in your mouth.

 Kyo Baum Sable
Kyo Baum Sable, ¥540 (10 pieces)

The Kyo Baum Sable is also made with Uji green tea and soy milk, and baked to a moist yet crisp perfection.

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