Tag: Monaka

I tried the most-difficult-to-get Monaka in Tokyo! Ginza Kuya

I tried the most-difficult-to-get Monaka in Tokyo! Ginza Kuya

In Japan, some Wagashi, Japanese traditional sweets, are very popular and difficult to get. This time, I tried the most difficult to get Monaka, Japanese traditional wafers! Let me introduce how you can get it in Tokyo. (゜¬゜)

Related post: what is monaka? crispy japanese traditional sweets


Monaka from Ginza Kuya

The Monaka I tried is from Ginza Kuya, which was established in 1887 and is one of the oldest Japanese confectionery shop in Tokyo. The shop is located near Ginza station, Tokyo.

Ginza Kuya
Address: 6-7-19 Ginza, Chuo 104-0061, Tokyo (10AM-5PM, closed on Sunday)
Phone: +81 3-3571-3304
Access: 3min from Ginza sta.


You need reservation at least one week in advance

Why their Monaka is difficult to get? They don’t sell online but sell only at their store and because there are too many people want to buy, you need reservation beforehand.

To make a reservation, you can call them but they rarely pick a phone (I tired so many times but they were always busy…) so I recommend you to visit their store to place reservation.

In the shop, you need to tell them how many boxes you want to buy and the reservation date (it will take 4-6 days to prepare your order), your name and phone number. 1 box comes with 10 pieces for 1,100 jpy (nearly 10 USD), which is not expensive considering their popularity. They don’t accept credit cards, cash only.


ginza kuya shop


OK, it is damn good Monaka…

When you pick up your Monaka, you will notice the freshly toasted aroma coming from the box. The Monakas are so fresh, made in the morning.


ginza kuya monaka box


The wafers of Kuya’s Monaka are fluffier than typical ones. The Anko filling inside is sweet but not too sweet and has a strong taste of azuki beans. YES, it is very delicious and worth the wait.


ginza kuya delicious monaka


Related post: what is japanese red bean paste, anko? types and how to eat at home

Each piece is small so I could eat 3-4 pieces at once. Of course, Japanese tea Matcha goes well with it.


If you are a fan of Monaka and have a chance to visit Tokyo, Japan, please try Kuya’s Monaka!
Matane! (in Japanese, means “see you soon!”)

What is Monaka? Crispy Japanese traditional sweets

What is Monaka? Crispy Japanese traditional sweets

Monaka, or bean‐jam‐filled wafers, are Japanese traditional sweets that combine delicate sweetness and a sense of comfort that both the young and the old enjoy. There are many long-established specialty shops selling Monaka with original ideas.(・∀・)


What is Monaka?

Monaka is Japanese traditional sweets that have bean jam sandwiched with two thin Mochi wafers. You can enjoy the taste of smooth bean jam directly, fittingly accompanied by the fragrance of roasted wafers and their crispy mouth feel.



*Wafers of Moanaka are similar to ice cream cone, but ingredients are different. Wafers of Monaka are made from Mochi rice, while ice cream cone is typically made of a corn flour. Hence, flavors and textures are a bit different.

Typical fillings for Monaka are Anko, sweet red bean paste, however there are Monakas that include Mochi or chestnut to give it a nice and different accent.

Related post: what is japanese red bean paste, anko? types and how to eat at home


Fresh Monaka is the best! Then, want to try make-you-own Monaka?

Wafers used in Monaka are prone to damping, so after a while, their crispy mouth-feel will be gone. Therefore, if you are taking Monaka home as souvenirs from Japan, I recommend “make-your-own” Monaka. The bean jelly is packaged separately from the wafers, so you can serve yourself a fresh and crispy Monaka right before you eat it.

Enjoy freshly made Monaka!



Find cute Monaka!

The typical shape of Monaka is rectangle or circle, however, you can find many cute and non-ordinary shapes of Monaka these days. Some express season, and some express lucky charm. Let me show you some cute Monakas!


Whale Monaka


Cat Monaka


Ninja Monaka


Daruma (a traditional Japanese tumbler doll) Monaka


Matane! (in Japanese, means “see you soon!”)

Japanese response to wine and cheese, Wagashi and Sake?!

Japanese response to wine and cheese, Wagashi and Sake?!

Japanese traditional sweets (Wagashi) are designed to match traditional Japanese teas, such as Matcha. In fact, the combination of Wagashi and Matcha has been polished through ages as a part of Japanese culture, Sado (茶道), Japanese tea ceremony.


Related post: wagashi and matcha – combination polished through ages!


Wagashi and Sake?! – It’s a new trend in Japan.

Recently a new trend concerning Wagashi started in Japan. That is to pair Wagashi with Sake (aka Japanese rice wine) just like wine and cheese!Σ(゜ロ゜;)

This trend seems getting bigger and more widespread; many Sake bars now offer Wagashi as a side snack with your favorite sake, new restaurants that specializes in pairing Wagashi and Sake opened, many workshops are held where you can try different combinations to find your favorite pair. Surprisingly Wagashi and Sake go well together as the sweetness from Anko (Japanese red bean jam, used for most of Wagashi) matches flavors of Sake.


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But I wonder… What Wagashi go well with Sake?! Here, I introduce you 4 Wagashi that I recommend you to try to pair to Sake! Here we go!


4 Wagashi that go well with Sake


Yo-kan (羊羹)

Yo-kan is a Japanese type of jelly, made of Anko, sugar and ager. Its texture is like a hard jelly. To pair to Sake, I recommend Yo-kan that is made of Koshi-An (smooth Anko) as this is more smooth and melts in your mouth together with Sake. Want to try Yo-kan with fruity Sake?


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Daifuku (大福)

Daifuku (aka Anko Mochi) is another popular Wagashi made of round Anko covered with Mochi (sticky and chewy rice cake). You can taste strong flavor of rice from Mochi. Sake is also made from rice. No wonder they go well together. I recommend you to try Nigori-Sake (unfiltered Sake, also called as Cloudy Sake) with Daifuku as Nigori-Sake has strong and mellow flavor.


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Very popular Daifuku, Ichigo-Daifuku (aka Strawberry Mochi) also goes well with Sake!


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Dango (団子)

Dango is small Mochi balls skewered on a bamboo stick and served with many kinds of sauce. Dango is made of Mochi and has a strong rich rice flavor. There are many sauces for Dango but especially Mitarashi-Dango matches with Sake. Mitarashi is a Japanese rich sauce made of sugar and soy sauce. Since it tastes sweet and savory, it goes really good with Sake which has rich and smooth flavor.



Monaka (最中)

Monaka is Anko that is sandwiched with 2 crispy wafers made of Mochi. Because wafers are very thin and has freshly roasted aroma, you can taste nice and strong flavor from Anko. Please try Monaka with dry Sake.

Related post: what is monaka? crispy japanese traditional sweets


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Will you try? Let’s find your favorite combination.

Are you interested to try Japanese response to classic wine and cheese pair? There are hundreds of different flavors that Wagashi have. This allows you to easily enjoy many different taste combinations of Wagashi and Sake.

Related post: top 10 japanese sweets (wagashi) that japanese like the most!


Wagashi and Sake might be a surprising combination but I encourage you to give it a shot. And let me know your favorite combination! (*´∇`)ノ

Matane! (in Japanese, means “see you soon!”)