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Murasakino Wakuden Chakaseki

紫野和久傳 茶菓席
Area Central
Category Cafe / Machiya Style

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Kyoto's long-established ryotei(*1) Murasakino Wakuden, the Sakaimachi location.
On the first floor is a gift shop where you can purchase sweets or savory dishes to go. At the back is the ryotei Muromachi Wakuden. The chakaseki or tea room is upstairs. Today we'll introduce to you the chakaseki on the second floor.
A chakaseki is like a cafe where you can enjoy green tea with Japanese sweets in a traditional Japanese atmosphere. Besides Japanese sweets or wagashi, you also have the option of a light meal.
Given that this is the tea room of an upscale restaurant, the atmosphere, service, products--everything--is different from an everyday cafe or coffee shop. Yet, the prices here are still reasonable.
If you want to experience extravagance without breaking the bank, we recommend Murasakino Wakuden.….

(*1) Ryotei : a particular type of high-class Japanese restaurant

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The shop on the first floor sells sweets and other goods to take home or give as souvenirs (the custom of omiyage, a gift given to coworkers and family members after a trip, is an important part of Japanese culture). A staircase at the back leads to the tea room.

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The elegant feel of the room is just what you would expect from a fine restaurant.

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From this window you can view the courtyard. It's especially pretty in autumn with the changing leaves.

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The subtle touches make this room.

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This tea and snack were complimentary.

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The snack is made of small black beans, which are roasted then sprinkled with zarame(*2).

(*2) Zarame : brown sugar

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On this visit, we ordered the "fresh, authentic warabi mochi (with maccha)".
Warabi mochi is a Japanese dessert made from starch, water, and sugar. Because bracken starch (taken from the root of the warabi plant(*3)) is used, the sweets are called "warabi mochi".

(*3) Warabi : Japanese bracken fern

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Traditionally, warabi mochi are eaten chilled, but here at Wakuden, piping hot, freshly kneaded mochi are served on top of anko (red bean paste) and then covered in kinako (sweet soybean flour). Last but not least, on top they pour kuromitsu, otherwise known as molasses. Cold warabi mochi have the texture of gelatin, but served warm they are soft and chewy. This is the kind of deliciousness you only get fresh!

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This is a dessert from the summer seasonal menu: "Roasted green tea sorbet with red bean". Unlike kakigoori (shaved ice) covered in syrup, this is frozen houjicha (roasted green tea) that has been turned into a sorbet. It is topped with large-grained tanbasan azuki(*4) and shiratama (small rice flour dumplings). Like a sophisticated version of kakigoori for adults :)

(*4) Tanba San Azuki : "Anko" made from red beans grown in "Tanba"

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Address 679 Marukizaimokucho, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto city, Kyoto
京都府京都市中京区堺町通御池下ル丸木材木町679-20
Tel 075-223-3600
Open 11:30a.m. - 6:30p.m.
Closed - 1/1
URL http://www.wakuden.jp/shop/sakaimachi/index.html
Access 5 minute walk from Subway KarasumaOike Station
7 minute walk from Subway Kyoto city hall Station
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