For 158 years the Japanese tea brand has led the market with its methods of tea preservation and flavour enhancement. Established by Riemon Tsuji in 1860, the brand continues his philosophy of “continuing to innovate and sustain the tradition.”
The store design is an adaptation of a chabako (Japanese for tea box) by the world-famous lighting design master Shozo Toyohisa. Walking up to the sleek countertop, we were greeted by an array of tea boxes, slotted inside large wooden shelves, which complemented the white oak walls and warm yellow lighting.
The immense popularity of Auckland’s latest café may make it hard to secure a seat. Never fear, every offering is available for takeaway.
Their menu presents an extensive range of cakes, ice-cream, shaved ice, hot and cold drinks. The best part? They're all connected by one signature ingredient: Tsujiri matcha. With too many options to choose from, my friend and I sampled a range of sweet treats.
The matcha parfait came in a little sundae cup with crispy rice bubbles on the bottom, sticky mochi bite on the side, chunky red beans and a crunchy waffle slice to top it off. Unsurprisingly the matcha was the star – the slight bitterness fused beautifully with the sweetness of the ice cream.
Houjicha is a roasted matcha powder with nutty and caramel tones. These flavours are offered in abundance in Tsujiri’s houjicha whipped cream latte. Milky, creamy and dreamy – the less astringent houjicha flavour merged beautifully into the latte. That is what I call indulgence.
Finally, to avoid any additional brain-freezes, we ordered a matcha cheesecake. Tsujiri’s is a little wetter than the other jiggly cakes you know and love. Plus it doesn’t jiggle. The matcha flavour was surprisingly absent here. That being said, the cheesecake is the perfect accompaniment to their drinks. I recommend the matcha, as a drink, if you’re after the true tea experience.
The menu is a little pricey, but it's worth it for the chance to experience a century-old tea brand. If you’re a matcha lover, this is the place for you. If you’re not yet convinced, be prepared to join the matcha movement.
10-14 Lorne Street,
11am-10pm every day