Takenoko No Sato (cheese cake)

Posted in 2.5 Wasabi Pea Rating, Cookie, Sweet at 12:11 am by Boo

Taking a break again from the J-Listing extravaganza snacks with something a little more local. Sort of. What can I say, even though I have several lots more J-List things to get through somehow I wound up at My Second Favorite Asian Grocery Store and somehow these new cheesecake “pope hats” wound up in my basket.

I’ve done Takenoko no sato before in chocolate, and chestnut so I thought I’d give cheesecake a whirl. One difference 6 (!) years makes is that the candies (cookies?) are now individually wrapped. That seems to be more the way of things these days which is good for keeping the snacks fresh and possibly good for keeping one from pigging out too fast on “pope hats” since you have to stop and unwrap every single one. Plus, you know, there’s a wrapper trail that tells you exACTly how many of these things you’ve eaten when you are done. CSI: Japanese Snacks! I imagine the extra wrappers aren’t that environmentally friendly either. Besides, who really is just in it for one Takenoko? I find the idea of ‘each Takenoko it’s own wrapper’ a little absurd.

As to the candies/cookies themselves, they haven’t deviated much in form in the 6 years since I’ve reviewed the first two. These might be slightly bigger, but not “needs to be individually wrapped” slightly bigger. They still have that light shortbread base cookie which still isn’t as thumpy as a Walker’s shortbread cookie but still decently shortbread tasty. They also have a chocolaty coating which, in this case, is a white chocolatesque cheesecake flavored coating. They also have a noticeable cheesecake like whiff which isn’t anything close to the tasty smell of an actual cheesecake. It’s more like what you might get if you described how cheesecake smelled to someone who has never had cheesecake. Close but definitely off.

The cheesecake taste is somewhat similar, although I think the taste is closer to cheesecake than the smell is. Still there’s something just not quite right about the cheesecake flavor, maybe something a little more manufactured cheesecake flavoring than delicious cheesecake taste. Meh.

Your best bet is to make your own cheesecake with shortbread crumble crust because these Takenoko just don’t quite do it cheesecake-wise. Alternately, ditch the whole cheesecake idea and eat the chocolate or chestnut takenoko.

Rating of 2.5 wasabi peas out of a possible 5 wasabi peas.

1 Comment »

  1. Orchid64 said,

    April 24, 2010 at 8:22 pm

    I think that the individual wrapping of tiny cookies in these types of products is a reflection of how snacking tends to be done in Japan and by whom. When I worked in an office in Tokyo, the office ladies always kept snacks in their desks and shared them amongst themselves, but they ate tiny portions of them at a time. Individually wrapping them made it easier to hand out a cookie to another person, but also to “nurse” a bag of snacks for several weeks (or longer). Japanese people snack, but they eat tiny portions most of the time.

    Unfortunately, packaging waste is a consequence of meeting the unique demands of the market.

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