Food in Mouth


Minamoto Kitchoan

Around the corner from a TGI Friday's in Midtown, you can find yourself in a place far far away. You might not expect that in the Rockefeller Center area, you could have something that's like a teleporting machine. With tourists all around you, it's always good to know where to go to escape the madness. The store in question is Minamoto Kitchoan and the place it takes you to is Japan. From the outside it looks like a store that sells cute Japanese knick nacks. Looks closer and you'll discover that it's actually a store that sells wagashi, the Japanese snack that's often served during tea ceremonies.


Minamoto Kitchoan is on 49th street just west of 5th avenue. Inside you find all sorts of tasty Japanese treats. You could look at it as a dessert or just a snack, but it's probably better to think of them as desserts. Let me tell you why... if you think of these things as snacks, then they become some expensive ass snacks. My love for cheap things like the Buck Double or Duck buns are well documented. But that doesn't mean I don't love a pricier treat every now and then. I mean, it's not like going to a 4-star restaurant. It's just paying $4 for something.

They have this sorbet thing that is very delicious. It's peach flavored and man alive, I could eat this all summer long. You kind of have to eat this thing soon after you buy it otherwise it'll melt and all the cute animals that Ceasar Milan conquers will die and become unruly animals again... I think.


You can also get yourself some daifuku. I don't know what they call this either but it's also around $4 and it's just like a daifuku. It's mochi with red beans inside and mmmmm... it leaves you satisfied. This is one of those quality over quantity issues... although one time I had a gigantic mochi and really, gigantic mochis are very satisfying too. It's nice to know that it's possible to score some happiness points with a small package that's priced for people who want to preserve Bush tax cuts.


I like going to stores like this because you never have the pressure to buy a lot. It's not like sitting down at a fancy restaurant. When you sit down at a fancy restaurant, is it cool to just split an entree with your girlfriend because you two wanna try something new? I mean, what's the server gonna be thinking, "These nice folks are here at 7pm trying new things they've never had before, how quaint!" or is it more like "These motherfuckers didn't order that much so now my tip is gonna be less. Fuck. Hurry up and leave!" And it might not even be a situation like that... it might be a group of friends going to a new-ish restaurant, ordering some dishes to try. But the server knows we could probably eat more and constantly pushes for us to order more or asks if we're good on drinks EVERY SINGLE TIME she walks by. Seriously, after answering five times, you figure the message would you know, pass through the skull via osmosis. So yea, hurray for stores where you just pick what you want and leave.

Minamoto Kitchoan
608 5th Ave.
New York, NY 10020

Map to find Minamoto Kitchoan

Posted by Danny on

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Type "dumplings" (minus quotes) in the next box, this is required

  • @Lamchop,

    I think a lot of things can fall under the umbrella of wagashi. Mochi is one of those things.


    sorry that the comment thing cut it off :( You're right about their packaging. It's always detailed and elaborate. You make the mochi sound really easy. haha. I will have to try this at home.

  • Is wagashi and mochi the same thing? I've seen boxed mochis in stores.

  • I love going to Minamoto Kitchoan every so often. I

  • (Sorry for the repeat commentary, Danny. Strange thing your comment box didn't seem to post my entire comment.)

    I love going to Minamoto Kitchoan every so often. Something about their insanely gorgeous packaging seduces me to buy their boxed sets of sweets.

    But the only things I don't buy from Kitchoan anymore are the red bean mochis since I can make them myself at home for a lot less than $4 a piece! (In essence, you just need a big pot to cook the adzuki beans, water, sugar, and time you get the darn paste. The exterior dough is glutinous rice flour, sugar and water. Just cook it in a rice cooker. Put the two together and you get daifuku mochi. Eat, enjoy and save a couple of bucks since a batch can feed you pretty damn well.)

    @Lambchop: Not exactly the same. Wagashi is a general term for all Japanese sweets that is usually served with tea. Mochi is a term to describe a Japanese sweet that is made of glutinous rice flour and filled with anko (red bean paste).

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