Wagashi: Chadango and Minazuki

Wagashi: Chadango and Minazuki (茶だんご みなづき)

Wagashi: Chadango and Minazuki (茶だんご みなづき)

Minazuki is an early summer wagashi that from centuries ago commoners ate on the day that royals ate — ice.

In preparation of the 30th day of the 6 month, I (Peko), stopped by Sentaro (reviewed previously here) in the food court at Takashimaya Department Store and picked up some minazuki and chadando.

Minazuki is a layer of uiro with azuki beans on top. Uiro is similar to mochi, but instead of being steamed rice that has been pounded, uiro is mixture of flour, rice or, more often, wheat, water and sugar that has been streamed.

Minazuki is only eaten in June. In ancient times the imperial court celebrated the end of the first half the year on June 30 with ice. Ice, an out-of-this-world summer luxury, was frozen in winter and stored in a subterranean building that can still be seen today at the Kyoto Imperial Palace (Sento Gosho). (For more about ice and summer treats see the Gion Koishi ‘Shaved Ice’ article.)

This minazuki is green as it is green tea flavored but the traditional would be white. Both colors are available now. The white color represented ice to the commoners of ancient Kyoto.

Chadango: Chadango is a classic green tea flavored dango. Sentaro sprinkles some tea leaf on it. Chadando is available year-round.

Unwrapping Chadango and Minazuki
Wagashi: Chadango and Minazuki (茶だんご みなづき)

Chadango Served
Wagashi: Chadango and Minazuki (茶だんご みなづき)

Minazuki Served
Wagashi: Chadango and Minazuki (茶だんご みなづき)
This minazuki is green tea flavored.

Minazuki Detail
Wagashi: Chadango and Minazuki (茶だんご みなづき)

English menu: none
English website: none | Japanese language website (nice photos)
Service/Staff: So-so
Price: 500 – 1,000 yen. (no sit down area, take-out only)
Location and Access: Sentaro Honten (main store) is located on Teramachi Street about a 2 minute walk south from Shijo Street.
Address: 604-8032 Kyoto-shi Shimogyo-ku Teramachi-dori Bukkou-ji agaru Nakanomachi 576
Telephone: 075-344-0700
Near Sightseeing Spot: Sentaro Honten is located in the center of Kyoto near Shijo Kawaramachi. This area has several department stores. It is the main shopping area of Kyoto. Shijo Karasuma is about a 10 minute walk.

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8 Responses to “Wagashi: Chadango and Minazuki”

  1. That minazuki looks so good. We get a pretty good variety of Japanese food here in NY, but wagashi is unfortunately not one of them.

  2. Peko Peko says:

    Hello Marc, No wagashi is a major bummer, dude!

  3. That looks really yummy! Pity I live so far away!

  4. Sorina says:

    Very Very visually appealing…great presentation

  5. diva says:

    dango, o dango! dango..i can’t remember how the song goes..but anyway i love em. they’re so cute and yummy. thanks for the minazuki info. that’s so interesting.
    and this post has now reminded me abt my wish to make dango on the weekend…bout time i go get some ingredients!

  6. Peko Peko says:

    Hi Diva

    You are going to make dango, on the weekend, or any time?

    Very difficult! Very difficult!

  7. Jon says:

    Marc… we have wonderful wagashi in New York! There’s Minamoto Kitchoan, located on the West 49th Street at Fifth Avenue. They have some amazing stuff, though it’s very pricey.

  8. Deb says:

    I tried both of these sweets in Uji this July. I couldn’t remember the name of Minazuki, but I really liked it! There was a cinnamon minazuki that was so delicious…

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