We fall under the dark, stretchy spell of the company’s newest mochi ice cream.
American-based, European-sounding Häagen-Dazs has earned quite a faithful following for its premium ice creams in Japan. In addition to standard flavors like chocolate and strawberry, the company also routinely rolls out special offerings inspired by Japanese cuisine, such as sweet red bean, purple potato, or matcha green tea (a.k.a. ice cream Jesus).
One of the most popular parts of Häagen-Dazs localized lineup is its mochi ice cream, which goes on sale every winter and sells out quickly. Because of that, we got up bright and early on February 28, the day when Häagen-Dazs’ new sesame walnut mochi ice cream went on sale, and headed to the grocery store to secure some samples.
Japanese sweets fans say the optimal way to enjoy Häagen-Dazs is to let it sit for a while after taking it out of the freezer, so we gave our snacks 20 minutes to get just a bit melty. Then we removed the lid, and were greeted with a sauce as dark as our covetous, ice cream-craving hearts.
The ice cream comes topped with a light-absorbing black sesame sauce, seemingly formulated to satisfy those with a penchant for sharing snapshots of their food on social media or simply really miss Japan’s black hamburger craze of a few years back. That’s not the only sesame contribution, though. Underneath all that sauce is a mochi-enhanced ice cream with white sesame paste mixed in, and also crunchy walnut chunks.
But the real visual impact comes when you scoop up a mouthful of ice cream, which thanks to its mochi content has become astoundingly stretchy.
The mochi and ice cream blend seamlessly well together. With two types of sesame involved, the seasoning provides the primary flavor profile, and also a sophisticated aromatic element to the treat, yet never becomes overpowering.
In the end, we’ve got no complaints about Häagen-Dazs’ sesame walnut mochi ice cream, and we’re happy to have found a dessert that’s as entertaining to look at as it is delicious to eat.
[ Read in Japanese ]