GOURMET TREATS

Where to Get Wagashi

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Uniquely Japanese, wagashi are delicate confections that often feature a sweet bean paste filling. Wakayama is home to numerous venerable sweet shops. For an idea of what to buy and where, take a look at our selection of the best wagashi.

A venerable Japanese confectionery store, Sohonke Surugaya is popular with Wakayama locals. The shop is best known for its manju, a small confection filled with sweet red bean paste. They make a delicious snack and are also good as gifts.

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Stop in at Kobaido in Shingu to pick up their signature bell-shaped sponge cake bites. Light and fluffy, not too sweet and very moreish, they are made to a recipe handed down over generations.

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For a unique Japanese confection, head to Fuzen to try the Sasamaki Anpu, small wheat-starch parcels flavoured with mugwort and filled with a sweet bean paste. Don't eat the bamboo grass leaves that they come wrapped in.

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The Deluxe Cake sold at a renown sweet shop Kishu Suzuya in Tanabe is a Japanese take on a jam sponge. Instead of using strawberry jam, the shop uses a jam made from cannellini beans and the cake is coated in white chocolate. These small cakes are so popular they have been featured in various local media.

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Gihei Kaho's sweet red bean confection is an award-winning sweet that has earned recognition in the Japanese sweets Olympics. It is a traditional confection with a flavour unchanged for nearly 100 years. No additives or preservatives are used.

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