Ahh… natsukashiiii… those summer days in Japan when I used to eat my weight in Matcha Haagen Dazs from the 7-11 convenience store around the corner!
A drippy, whippy ice cream on a summer’s day brings out the gleeful, sticky-chinned child in everyone. But choosing matcha (very strong, powdered green tea) flavour does feel that little bit more grown-up and sophisticated. Ahem.
Massively popular in Japan, matcha flavoured ice cream has been hard to find in London in the past. Not any more…
Although the Japanese firm Tsujiri has been an expert in Matcha Green Tea for 155 years, they have only recently opened a branch in Soho. With the incredible variety of intensely green sweet treats Instagram is already all aglow with this new speciality ice-cream parlour.
Tsujiri in London serves matcha soft serve creations with a variety of Japanese-inspired toppings, such as mochi balls or slices of matcha cake, the photos alone are enough to soon be encouraging queues at the door. Visit their Facebook page or Instagram here.
2. Tombo – London’s first authentic Japanese Café & Matcha Bar 29 Thurloe Place, London SW7 2HQ http://tombocafe.com
This South Kensington favourite offers lots of clean eating options, so you can feel really virtuous before indulging in one of their matcha desserts.
From simple soft serve in a cone, to matcha sundaes, to matcha tiramisu.
Tombo is really popular, rather narrow, and they don’t take reservations. Right across the road, however, is the old favourite, Kulu Kulu sushi. Being a conveyor-belt sushi place, the turnover is fast… just check their opening hours.
3. Bake – Pan-Asian Bakery 9 Wardour St, London W1D 6PF https://www.facebook.com/pages/Bake-麵包屋/208049219544860
This place is a pretty exciting find for those who love Asian baked goods! They just manage to get it right with goods inspired by those popular in Malaysia, China, Japan, and Korea!
Possible the most ‘insta-bae’ item is their spin on the ever-popular Japanese snack ‘Taiyaki’ – the fish shaped baked cone is topped with matcha ice cream. Gorgeous little taiyaki baked fish sweets are also available.
4. Machiya – Compact Japanese restaurant just off Leicester Square that hits all the right notes 5 Panton Street Soho London SW1Y 4DL http://machi-ya.co.uk/
This cosy Japanese restaurant is proving really popular. They offer a range of delicious dishes but what we are concerned about is the soft serve. Available not only in matcha green tea flavour, their soft serve also comes in black sesame! Impossible to decide? You can get a mix. Phew!
Read JapaneseLondon.com’s review of Machiya other foodie delights here.
5. Soft Serve Society – Ridiculously Instagrammable desserts – and what looks cooler than than bright green matcha flavour? Boxpark Shoreditch, 2-10 Bethnal Green Road, London E1 6GY https://www.boxpark.co.uk/shoreditch/food-and-drink/soft-serve-society/
Market Hall Fulham 472 Fulham Road, London, SW6 1BY https://www.markethalls.co.uk/trader/soft-serve-society
Lavishly extravagant toppings are the regular here, oversize marshmellows, honeycomb, candy floss clouds and Pocky sticks are available to adorn your matcha creations! Soft Serve Society also offer ‘freak-shakes’, bubble teas and sundaes. An Instagram sensation by friends Emma & Nikki, Soft Serve Society also offer black ice-cream cones which provide an awesome contrast to the green ice-cream!
Little Moons Matcha Green Tea Mochi Ice http://www.littlemoons.co.uk/home
Not going out? Perfect for dinner party desserts or stuffing in your face in the park alike, these elegant and versatile desserts aren’t cheap (£4.99 ish for 6) and boy, do they melt fast. But they are fiendishly addictive – Ocado, The Japan Centre and Wholefoods can keep you supplied. They are also available in Toasted Sesame flavour; also Mango, Coconut, Vanilla etc. Some Wholefoods locationBut when matcha’s an option, why would you go for anything else?
Right, I’m off to search for more melting matcha moments in London! If you have any top tips on where else to encounter matcha or green tea ice cream in London, please do let us know!