Do You Know What Is a Standard Souvenir of Kyoto?

Unbaked Yatsuhashi

Do You Know What Is a Standard Souvenir in Kyoto?

Yes, it is Yatsuhashi!!

Yatsuhashi in a can
Yatsuhashi in a can

Yatsuhashi is a crispy sweet with cinamon flavor.


History of Yatsuhashi

Surprisingly, the origin is around 300 years ago.

There are two theories. One of them says Yatsuhashi had been started to be sold as a souvenir for people who visited the grave of  Yatsuhashi Kengyo who was an   originator of a Japanese harp school. So, the shape of Yatsuhashi was designed as a Japanese harp. 

The shape is from a Japanese harp… I thought the shape was from a tile.

A famous Yatsuhashi confectioner, Otabe started to sell Unbaked Yatsuhashi from 1966.  The history is longer than I thought.

Recent Yatsuhashi 

Nowadays, Yatsuhashi is not only baked type and unbaked type.  There are various types for now.。

“Kotabe” is small version of “Otabe”. “Otabe” is a sweet wrapping mushed sweet beans with a piece of unbaked Yatsuhashi . Regular “Otabe” contains more than 10 pieces (depends on the box size), while “Kotabe” contains 5 pieces.  The box is small and cute. So, it must be nice for eating by myself or giving to someone as a small present. The image is following.↓

Certainly, it was cute, but I wanted to share the souvenir with my family. So, I bought “Aki Otabe” which is a autumn limited version “Otabe”.

Aki Otabe Box
Aki Otabe Box
Inside of the Otabe box
Inside of the Otabe box

It was nice!!

Fusion Sweet of Yatsuhashi

Recently, some fusion sweet of Yatsuhashi has come out. 

Such as a chocolate crunch made with crashed Yatsuhashi, Yatsuhashi coated chocolate, etc.

Something like this↓

I’ve never eaten the crunch. I wanna eat it someday.

BTW, my favorite is Chocolate Yatsuhashi. Especially Match flavor.

However, I couldn’t buy it at the last time trip.  I asked a seller to buy it, but she says “We don’t have it in summer. Because the chocolate gets melt.” My trip was on the end of September, but the temperature was still hot. So, they didn’t have.

But wait a second. The website says “Year-around”… The sold articles are different between the shops?

That is why, they would open the online shop too=3

If I really wanna eat it, I will buy from internet.

(You can buy it even if you are not live in Japan! They offer international shipping!!)

Kyoto Sweets “Otabe” Official Corporate Site 

Kyo Machiya Cake seems to be nice. Matcha (green tea) sponge cake holds unbaked Yatsuhashi.

By the way, I ate a soft-serve ice cream with Yatsuhashi in the last time trip. I can scoop the ice with Yatsuhashi.

Yatsuhashi is a simple sweet, so, it seems to have many ways to eat.

You Can Make Unbaked Yatsuhashi in Kyoto

In Otabe main shop and Kyoto tower, there is a place to make unbaked Otabe “Otabe Making Experience Dojo(おたべ手作り体験道場 Otabe Tezukuri Taiken Dojo) by appointment only!

Wow, I wanna go!!

Otabe Making Experience Dojo おたべ手作り体験道場
(Written in Japanese only)

I will go for it next time!


Kyoto Sweets “Otabe” Official Corporate Site