I’ve been to Tsujiri’s Dundas Square store 4-5 times in the last few months and I only have good things to say about their Matcha Soft Serve.
For anyone who doesn’t already know about Tsujiri, it is a 155 year old chain dessert/matcha shop originating from Kyoto, Japan. Tsujiri has branches in Japan, UK, Canada, Singapore, Taiwan, China, Malaysia and will soon expand to Thailand, US, Australia and Indonesia.
**so the super confusing multi-price quote is dependent on both size and type of soft serve (matcha only vs. matcha & vanilla).**
I haven’t bothered to figure out which soft serve flavour is more expensive. I would assume it’s the matcha one that’s more expensive because more matcha powder is used.
Most to Least Favourite:
1) Yuzu Citron Float: [Price: $5.75 (s) /6.25(m) or $6.50(s)/7(m)]
I loved the Yuzu Citron Float because it uses real yuzu syrup (NOT POWDER!) with tiny yuzu (柚子) bits. I like how that adds to the texture and flavouring of the float. The taste was exactly the same as some of the yuzu drinks I had in Japan, so I was really impressed by that. The matcha soft serve was smooth and rich, but not bitter. This is definitely my favourite out of all the menu items.
2) Matcha Mochi: ($5/ piece)
(no photo … I was too busy chowing down)
This matcha mochi was really good because the mochi itself had a very thin “skin” (for lack of a better word). Mochi is made of glutinous rice and the inner filling of this one had green tea cream. The mochi I’ve had in Canada are generally made with really thick skin and are super chewy, and I don’t like that kind of mochi texture. For me it also depends on what kind of filling is inside. A slightly thicker skin would be nice for red bean paste filling, but for fruit or cream fillings I prefer thinner skin. **Do not try to buy this and leave it overnight in the fridge, it’ll be hard as a rock the next day. MUST BE CONSUMED FRESH!*
3) Tsujiri Sundae: (Price: $7/ 7.50) -one size
The Tsujiri Sundae had a base of roasted crunchy brown rice topped with matcha ice cream, a sweet dango, chestnut, and a cherry blossom cookie. I didn’t actually like this sundae for various reasons. Most people come for the matcha soft serve anyway, so the rest of the stuff is just an add on. The matcha was good as usual, but I didn’t like the brown rice and the aftertaste that remained. The dango was chewy and didn’t have much additional flavouring. Some places like to add yuzu flavoured sauce to their dango when it’s eaten alone, but Tsujiri probably chose not to because the dessert would have been too sweet. As for the chestnut, I didn’t really taste anything and it was just more of a textured lump. I think the cherry blossom cooking was a sugar cookie, but I could clearly identify sprinkles of salt in it. There was no distinct cherry blossom taste and it could have been because the matcha already overpowered everything else.
4) Chiffon Cake Sundae: (Price: $7/7.50) -one size
I had the Chiffon Cake Sundae and I was honestly expecting the chiffon cake to be soft and moist, but it was quite dry. I’ve never had chiffon cake before so I can’t really do a fair comparison to other chiffon cakes. The matcha soft serve was good as usual. The red bean paste was overly sweet, but the paste was well made and had good texture. I didn’t understand the purpose of a layer of corn flakes. If you ate this too slowly the corn flakes would get soggy. It’s just expensive for a cup this size to have an entire layer of corn flakes. Either make the cup bigger or put fewer corn flakes. It just annoyed me that I can get a box of corn flakes at Wal Mart for $5 and 1/3 of this cup was just corn flakes.
This place is honestly a pretty average matcha dessert shop compared to the available selections in Asia. It’s also pretty expensive for the portion size and the things they give you, but I considering we’re in Canada and we don’t have that many options… you better be prepared to pay for quality matcha. I’ll still come frequently since my school is a few blocks from here, but I definitely won’t be getting any of the sundaes. I’ll probably just stick to the yuzu float or the matcha cones. As for the line up, I haven’t ever had more than 3 people in front of me because I usually drop by during work hours on weekdays.