A common misconception about matcha is that bitter is better. This is sometimes used by certain companies as an excuse to make up for their pedestrian flavorings. While the deep, earthy taste is definitely a staple, the best matcha should actually also possess that sought after umami flavor. The best matcha should make you experience a medley of flavors dance on your tongue, from bitter to sweet to creamy to grassy and maybe even smokey.
The O-Matcha (Php 130)
Newly opened Tsujiri at S Maison is unlike the rest in the respect that they don’t need any excuses; they actually are serving the best. The international Japanese brand originated in Uji, Kyoto more than a century ago (155 years, to be exact), which is the birthplace of the foremost source of matcha. Because of this, Tsujiri chooses to use only premium grade matcha, expertly selected in order to guarantee quality.
The Yuzu O-Matcha (Php 145)
While Tsujiri may not have invented matcha, they were the pioneer of matcha-infused desserts—basically matcha as we know it today. Which makes their pastry menu (custom made for the Philippines!) a must-try.
The Choux Creme, one of the three pastries on Tsujiri’s upcoming dessert menu
The Citronne Matcha Cake navigates with flavors through the combination of mild matcha and bright calamansi. Their Choux Creme becomes a play on an ice cream sandwich. According to a great number of people though, it is a conundrum to eat. Its streusel-like crust yields a delightful contrast with the creamy texture of the matcha ice cream and makes it worth the inevitable mess. Of course, the ever-reliant Lava Cake remains the crowd favorite, with a chocolate and matcha variant. The honey cake base is perfectly paired with the indulgent matcha ooze.
Tsujiri’s Matcha Lava Cake will be launched along with the dessert menu this May 28!
I have to admit though, I was impartial to the cold options on the menu. The shaved ice variants all glowed in their sublime simplicity. Without the usual trappings and exaggerated add-ons that are typical in ice desserts, the mingling of the matcha syrup with milky ice, red bean paste, and mochi balls was able to shine.
The Uji Sunrise (Php 325) and Uji Sunset (Php 325) are more than enough for sharing
This same effortlessness comes through in their different sundae and soft-serve options. Nowhere else in Manila have I been able to taste the same potency of matcha as in Tsujiri. They were even able to convert a self-professed matcha-hater member from my team!
The Tsujiri Sundae (Php 285) is a harmonious blend of creamy matcha, salty-sweet red bean, and toasted rice topped with mochi and chestnuts
I wasn’t able to try their Chiffon Cake Parfait Sundae (Php 265) but at least that gives me an excuse to go back!
Bringing Tsujiri to Manila isn’t just about the food and drinks, it is about offering an experience. When you sip one of the steaming lattes or scoop a mochi ball out of your sundae, you’re not just getting a taste of matcha, you’re getting a taste of Japan’s traditions and culture.
2nd Floor S Maison, Seaside Blvd, Pasay City
Open from Sunday to Friday 10am-10pm