It’s spring in Japan!

Every time I walk by a Starbucks I am easily tricked into thinking that spring is here. On the 15th of February all Starbucks across Japan threw out the Valentines stuff and switched to one of my favorite Starbuck themes of the year.  

For those of you who do not live in Japan, Sakura blossom signify that spring has come and more importantly, winter is over. Even though it is still only February and we are a good month away from the true Sakura blossoms blooming just going into Starbucks during this time of year makes me feel like I have a little spring in my step. A new friend on Twitter even described the mood as “up beat” for the first several days. It is one of those things we all need to shake up our spirits and remember that the cold is almost over, then we can really start living again!

This afternoon my son and I took our weekly trip to Starbucks together and on our way out I picked up on of each of the four deserts that they have for enjoyment this year. Everything has some flavor of “Sakura” I asked several co-workers and neighbors to discribe to me what the flavor Sakura means to them because for me, it is just a mix of sweet, salty and a little bitterness. For them they said it was the smell of the Sakura leaves. They wanted me to make sure I did not confuse the Sakura leaves with the traditional Cherry trees we are use to in the States. I thought to myself as they are tell me to not confuse the two, that’s ok cuz’ I don’t know what a Cherry leaf smells like!

So far I have only eatten the Sakura danish. It is amazing! It is a traditional danish, but in the inside there is Sakura flavored bean paste. One of the partners at Starbucks told me it was a mix of three textures. The bread, the bean paste and in the middle was peices of macaroons. To be honest, I can see the macaroons, but they don’t really change the texture too much.

After my son when to sleep I made myself a cup of coffee and sat down and drank a stick of Columbia VIA with my treats. I started with the two that would fall in the category of bread. Since I knew what the danish tasted like already I just tasted it with black coffee. It definetly makes the smell of the sakura flavored beans more distinctive.  I then tried the Sakura scone. A little disappointing. I really loved the scone last month when it had a chai flavor frosting on top. This time it almost has a strawberry taste. For kids, this would be ok. With coffee, it just tasted like a regular scone. Then I moved onto the cake group. The chiffon cake is first pleasing to eat. It is super cute with the sakura flower on top and the pink frosting. It is super moist and full of flavor. Good for afternoon tea time! Finally, I ate the rare Cheese cake. It is so fluffy but full of flavor. It was the best match for the columbian coffee.

There is so much to talk about at Starbucks this time of year! I hope you leave me comments. I have several ideas lined for the next few weeks before I back to the states for a short visit! I will see you all really soon.


4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Kevin
    Feb 19, 2011 @ 20:43:10

    I’d love to give a few more of those treats a try! I loved the Sakura danish. I think I’ll take your advice and avoid the scone though.

    Have you tried some of the Sakura drinks?


  2. jy
    Feb 20, 2011 @ 12:31:56

    Sakura is my favorite time of the year too! Though I really come back to life during summer. Though the last summer was a little too hot for me. Ha ha… Funny when my mom was here, several years ago now, that’s all we did too was go from Starbucks to Starbucks… ha ha. Like there was nothing better to see / do…


  3. Kaori
    Feb 20, 2011 @ 14:40:49

    I’m loving your blog already! 😀

    I tried the scone too. It was okay but it didn’t really have much of a flavor to it. I think I would have preferred a whole lot more of the pink frosting on top.

    Was the cheese cake really good? I keep on hearing good things about it but always end up not ordering it because to me it looks like pink tofu!!! lol.

    Can’t wait for your next post! 😉


    • starbucksinjapan
      Feb 20, 2011 @ 22:20:02

      I must be like you Kaori san, I would have never tried the cheese cake if I hadn’t done this taste test. Try it in the late afternoon or evening. I am sure you won’t be disappointed!
      Thanks for you comments everyone!


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