While the world fights over who invented ice-cream – Victorians or Chinese, the Japanese have mastered the art, like they have most food.
The first thing you notice in an ice cream saloon is flavors and store set-up. Many stores have a lot of decorative, fun and cute little decorations. The stores are slathered in beautiful pinkish or any cute-ish colors.
Some ice cream parlors are inspired by favorite Japanese cartoon characters. Apart from those stores, standing tall are traditional stores which have been around for more than 60 years.
Sowa ice cream parlor is one such store. Its foundation was laid in 1955, the Sowa ice-cream have fed generations and it continues to do so for the next ones. Sowa is ranked #1 in “my top 3 ice cream list”.
TOP 3 ICE-CREAM SHOPS IN TOKYO
#1: SOWA in Kamiyacho
Just two blocks behind Kamiyacho Station you can find SOWA. It’s been around since 1955 and has both homemade and soft serve ice cream! I enjoyed both and I recommend both. The texture and taste were excellent.
Soft-serve or soft cream ice-cream as famously known is Japan is smooth and you can enjoy in up to 45 flavors of these beauties. Some ridiculously delicious flavors are miso, fish, wasabi and soy sauce.
#2: Gelateria Marghera in Azabu Juban
If you do not have sweetness fetish then “The Gelato” is a perfect option for you. Unlike Gelato served across the world here you can find plethora of weird flavors and a lot of regular flavors too. These Gelato servings are generous, excellent in taste, not too sweet and not fattening too. As for sweet tootsies, they also serve excellent ice cream sandwiches!
OUCA is one of the finest Japanese ice-cream makers in Ebisu. The Matcha flavored ice-cream is to die for. After searching endlessly, I cannot find the pictures of our trip to OUCA. But here’s the map for you to discover this place.
Apart from Top 3 I have an additional ice cream joint, where I ate ice cream almost every day.
#4: Blue Seal Ice-cream (Okinawa)
Let’s go to Okinawa for dessert. On our trip to Okinawa, I fell head over heels in love with Blue Seal ice cream servings. It is one of the most famous Okinawan ice cream shops.
Though Blue Seal came from US military in 1950’s, there is no Blue Seal ice cream store in the US. The local flavors include Benimo, Okinawan Salt cookies, Mango and a line type fruit called Shiquasa. I enjoyed mixing mango and shiquasa. Don’t forget to try this in Okinawa.