On February 3rd, Häagen-Dazs Japan got all pretty and floral when they released two new flavors to commemorate their 30th anniversary: Sakura (Cherry Blossom) and Rose. Floral flavors can be a bit hard for some people to wrap their heads around, and while sakura is quite common in the spring, rose is a bit of a stretch for some.


These 100mL tubs the size of my palm retails at ¥284 each (around $3). The verdict?


Both flavors are ice cream slathered with a jelly-like sauce at the top. When I first saw it, I thought it looked a bit like a sherbet. The sakura flavor is more on the fruity side. Raspberry sauce was marbled into the ice cream, making it taste like a combination of cherry and bubblegum. The cherry sauce on top is a bit sour. The sakura is overpowered by the fruitiness of the ice cream. Regardless, it was really delicious.


The plum sauce gave the rose tub a really gorgeous crimson. However, when I tasted it, I was overwhelmed by the flavor. It reminded me of shampoo and body wash. Since we often connect the smell of rose to thing like air fresheners and shampoo, it’s really hard to associate it with food after knowing it in those contexts for so long. Nonetheless, it was still good—but in a weird way.

The packaging is very pretty, with lots of pink and a light, pearlescent sheen making you feel slightly less bad about spending too much money on too little ice cream. It’s a luxury item, and it wants you to be well aware of that fact. It’s not all flash and shine though, as the ice cream really is a step above your average pint.

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