©Photo by Gomaya Kuki

9,000 Sesame Seeds Ice Cream And So Much More At Gomaya Kuki

Open sesame!

By Shelley Smith
November 15, 2018
Food & Drink, New In The City

Can you find the gomasuri (sesame grating) set in store?

The Kuki Sangyo Sesame Corporation opened doors to a modern (yet, somewhat traditional in its ambiance) goma (sesame) ice cream cafe, Gomaya Kuki, in Harajuku back in February 2018. Since then, the lovely spot has gained much attention and popularity for its creamy and rich sesame ice cream, a wide variety of sesame-inspired treats and drinks, and for its gentle reminder that sweets can, after all, be quite healthy!

The rich flavor of sesame has attracted not just local youngsters but also many foreigners who want to try a healthy oriental flavor they’ve rarely tried before. Yours truly joined the crowd and stopped by at the famous cafe to taste one or two (ok, a little more) of its best desserts.

The store has six main sesame ice cream flavors as well as other counter menu items which also incorporate the sesame ice cream. The most popular menu item by far is the triple rich black and white sesame ice cream cup which is said to be made with approximately 9,000 sesame seeds (I’m not kidding!)

Milder versions of the sesame ice cream along with flavors with a salty twist or surprisingly creamy multigrain, are, of course, also available if you prefer a more orthodox style. The counter menu serves up delicious treats such as fluffy pancakes, sugary deep-fried bread and coffee flavored red bean soup, all of which come with scoops of sesame ice cream.

 

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Sesame ice cream tempura (pictured above) is also a popular snack. All food items cooked with oil is done with Kuki Sangyo’s special light sesame oil that is very mild in flavor and has a beautiful sesame aroma.

My first impression after visiting the store myself was how calm it was. Many young women were seated along the Japanese style stools quietly chatting with sesame ice cream in hand. Truthfully, not being a big sesame fan, I was curious to see if I’d enjoy the ice cream as I would another flavor.

 

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I sat up by the counter and first ordered the popular triple rich ice cream cup (¥500). The cup came with two individual scoops of black sesame ice cream and white sesame ice cream. Comparing the two, I found the black sesame to be slightly creamier than the white but overall both flavors were truly very rich in sesame flavor, but not in an overpowering way. The taste had a very nice natural nutty sweetness to it that made it addictive and after being advised to try the ice cream with some complementary sesame oil and seeds, I couldn’t put the cup down.

 

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By now a converted sesame believer, wanting more, I decided to order off the counter menu and chose to get the deep fried bread with sesame ice cream (¥750).

I got to choose which sesame flavor ice cream I wanted with it, so I got the salted black sesame and the white multigrain. The salted black had a very light and refreshing flavor whilst the multigrain was very creamy and smooth. The bread itself — deep fried in sesame oil — was like a donut but without the usual oily taste. It was much more flavorsome and went nicely with the cold sesame ice cream.

Although I wanted to keep eating, by the time I finished the deep fried bread, I was quite full. Next time, I definitely want to try the sesame ice cream smoothie (¥600) or the coffee flavored red bean soup (¥680).

 

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When talking to the barista (yes, they also serve up delicious coffee), I asked if there was anything more fun than what I’ve already experienced about the products or the store itself. I was told that there was a gomasuri (sesame grating) set hiding away in the interior of the shop somewhere. You could take a friend and see if they can find them, the bowl and the grating stick. Just between us, though, look up when at the store and you might find it. #SayNoMore

The store is perfect for ice cream lovers who want to taste a new, very underrated exotic flavor and of course for any sesame lovers out there! Unfortunately, there aren’t many options for people with allergies as all ice creams here contain milk, egg and sesame, but at least they don’t contain any nuts.

The shop is conveniently located about a 3-minute walk from Meiji Jingumae (Harajuku) Station or an 8-minute walk from Omotesando Station, so if you’re looking for a sweet pick-me-up in Harajuku, check out Gomaya Kuki’s world’s richest sesame ice cream. Let’s just say, it’s pretty Gomazing!

The Deets

Gomaya Kuki

Address: Harajuku H Building 1F, 4-26-22 Jingumae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo
Open: Mon-Sun, 11 a.m.-7 p.m.