Spring is coming! Let’s celebrate with Sakura sweets and beverages
Japanese and international travelers alike have been anticipating the coming of spring. The weather is great (not too hot or too cold), the atmosphere is perfect for strolling, and on top of that, it’s the season that Sakura will be blossoming. To celebrate the bloom of this symbolic and beautiful cherry blossom, many brands launch special Sakura products, beverages and sweets that are also pink and cute.
Starbucks Sakura Collection
Starbucks is well-known for its Sakura season goods and beverages. Their Sakura tumblers and other goods are very popular as they are limited to Japan and only available during this particular season.
For the year 2018, the Starbucks Sakura beverages are Sakura Strawberry Pink Mochi Frappucino (580 yen/Tall), Sakura Strawberry Mochi Pink Latte (470 yen/Tall) and Sakura Strawberry Pink Tea (470 yen/Tall). The beverages will be topped with Sakura white chocolate sprinkles and the Frappucino will also have a chewy and tasty Sakura Mochi Sauce. If you love photogenic drinks that taste great, we recommend you give these charming drinks a try.
There are also Sakura-flavored sweets such as Sakura Donuts (230 yen) and Sakura Chiffon Cake (380 yen), which are decorated with real Sakura flower pickle (the flowers are edible, so no need to worry)!
Godiva, one of the most well-known chocolate brands in the world, also have a “Japan special” Sakura drink every time this season arrives. For this year, they have brought out a couple of new items, including a twist on their classic drink menu, the Choco Elixir, which is available during the season as a White Chocolate Sakura Choco Elixir (600 yen). These pastel pink smoothies with Sakura sauce on top are so photogenic and so tasty!
These pastel pink smoothies with Sakura sauce on top are so photogenic and so tasty! There is also another special Sakura menu item from Godiva this year that is worth a try - the Mousse Chocola Cranberry Strawberry (612 yen), which features pink mousse on top that makes it super cute.
Other than drinks, Godiva also have strawberry cookies that are presented in a super lovely box that make them perfect as a gift!
Sakura-flavored Japanese sweets
During the Sakura season, convenience stores and Japanese traditional sweet stores offer special “Sakura” flavored sweets for sale. Interesting ones include mochi and Japanese-style parfait as seen below:
These are Sakura mochi and three-color mochis from 7-11 which are packaged and decorated very nicely. The Sakura mochi is decorated with real Sakura flower pickle, however, the filling is still the traditional red bean flavor (220 yen).
Sakura Mont blanc and Uchi Matcha Parfait (298 yen) are also from 7-11. It is so well made that it’s look and taste far exceed the pricetag. If you are a matcha lover, this sweet will blow your mind. It also comes with real, edible flower decorations!
Haagen Dazs Sakura Mochi
Haagen Dazs Japan has always been known for releasing spectacular seasonal flavors. To welcome the beautiful Sakura flower this spring, Haagen Dazs has released two new ice creams - Kuri Azuki flavor (red beans and chestnuts) and Sakura An flavor (red beans and Sakura), both flavors are priced at 324 yen.
The packaging and concept are really lovely and the name Haagen Dazs itself guarantees quality and good taste. Besides, who wouldn’t want to try a mochi flavored ice cream!? Haagen Dazs products are available in most convenience stores and supermarkets, so do give them a try!
Pocky Sakura Flavour
This year, Pocky has released a special seasonal Pocky - the Pocky Luxury Chocolatier Sakura flavor (around 338 yen. Being part of the Pocky Luxury Chocolatier line, the flavor was created using a variety of premium quality ingredients that results in a unique flavor like no other Pocky.
The packaging is very neat and clean, making it looks more expensive than what it is priced for. We recommend this as a gift as it’s both Japan and spring-limited. The receiver will surely be happy to get such a special and unique Pocky!
Sakura flavored Drinks and Sakura-themed seasonal packages
Other than sweets, there are several new Sakura-themed drinks for you to try. The most popular one is a ready-to-drink beverage from Starbucks called the Sakura Caramel Milk with Mixed Berry (around 219 yen) that is on sale at various convenience stores. The packaging is as pretty as ever!
In addition, there are also popular products that have been re-packaged with Sakura-themed seasonal packaging. For example, the ever-popular green tea by Ito-en below is being re-packaged in a lovely Sakura pastel pink!
Lastly, if you don’t have a chance to purchase any of the items we introduced here during your trip, you can still purchase some Sakura goods and sweets at the airport.
We hope you get to enjoy both the Sakura flowers and the Sakura sweets!
Tourist Note JAPAN