The company’s latest luxury release has Japanese ice cream lovers craving Chinese food.
Häagen-Dazs Japan is known for bringing out some awesome limited-edition flavours like purple sweet potato, salty vanilla, and Japanese-themed delights filled with adzuki red beans. Their latest release aims to raise the bar yet again, with a new series called “Decorations”, which puts a crunchy, cookie-laden layer on top of their signature rich and creamy ice creams.
▼ On the left is the Cheese Berry Cookie and on the right is the Banana Caramel Cookie.
Released on 8 November, the two new ice creams feature differently coloured toppings, with the Cheese Berry Cookie looking enticingly pink, and the Banana Caramel Cookie looking not-so-enticingly brown. Unfortunately, when it’s frozen, the brown-and-white coloured topping actually looks less like a sweet dessert and more like a different dish that’s quite well-known around Japan. Twitter user @ picked up on this fact, and posted this photo online, saying “All I can see is mabo doufu.”
あやねん (@aya1854knbn) November 08, 2016
Mapo doufu, or mabo doufu, as it’s more commonly known in Japan, is a popular Sichuan-style bean curd dish, containing ingredients like minced meat and pieces of chopped tofu. After seeing what mabo doufu looks like, the similarities between the ice cream and the savoury dish are pretty clear.
業務用ｽｰﾊﾟｰ(J･O10号機乗員) (@gyoumyou) November 09, 2016
This side-by-side makes it look like the new Häagen-Dazs ice cream flavour tastes like a spicy, saucy Chinese-style meat dish.
ツボツボ (@tsubo2_hts) November 09, 2016
Given Japan’s love of mabo doufu and Häagen-Dazs – separately, and definitely not together – Twitter users were quick to comment on the photo, which received more than 50,000 likes and retweets in just over a day.
“This is insane! It looks just like mabo doufu!”
“This reminds me of a number of rice-based dishes, but it definitely doesn’t look like ice cream!”
“That’s meant to be banana? I can’t imagine what it tastes like!”
“Now I want to eat mabo doufu.”
“How come this picture looks like it’s floating?”
While the composite image of the product on the table-top does make it look like it’s floating, the photographer says the effect has nothing to do with the look of the product as it appears inside the tub.
While some Twitter users thought the sweet looked like mabo doufu, other users likened the ice cream to a pack of Cup Noodles…
紅葉 (@chizuru_reiran) November 09, 2016
While others had fun with the image, showing what a real tub of Häagen-Dazs mabo doufu would look like.
にゃんとな (@yan_nov) November 09, 2016
We have to wonder if anyone at Häagen-Dazs actually anticipated this type of reaction from the public back when the product was being conceived. Still, we’re sure the hype around the product will still have people going out to try it, even if it is just to see how their senses of sight and taste cope with eating the unusual-looking ice cream!
Follow Oona on Twitter for more information about limited-edition releases in Japan.