In our latest feature on Japan’s most beloved treat, we ask three Tokyoites about their first experience of tasting the sweet, smooth deliciousness of softcream. Here’s what they said. 

We love discovering – an endless appetite for all that is new, yet to be experienced. And when sights, sounds, smells, textures, flavors become all-time favorites, it’s still sweet remembering that exact moment when we discovered them. Even with Japan’s abundance of novelty treats, many of us still remember some firsts. We asked three Tokyoites to reach into their memory treasure chest and tell us about the first time they experienced soft cream.

Liam, the UK

“Every kid who grows up in the UK knows the sound of the ice cream van – you can hear that jingle coming from two streets away! I think my first softcream experience was my sister’s fourth birthday, while my first softcream in Japan was when my youngest sister came to visit me after I moved here. We went on a tour of Hiroshima, Miyajima and Naoshima in crazy hot August. Walking around Hiroshima, we spotted a softcream shop and decided to cool down. They didn’t have any of the familiar 99 pence softcreams we used to have as kids, so we chose a very Japanese flavor – matcha – and to my surprise it was delicious (I’m not often a fan of matcha-flavor anything). It was the perfect way to take the edge off a hot day.”

Serina, Japan

“The first softcream memory I have is from when I was in the second grade of elementary school and was visiting family in the countryside of Hokkaido. On the drive from Shin-Chitose Airport to their place, we stopped at a softcream shop for a break. I tried the milk flavor; it was unbelievably creamy. Hokkaido produces the most milk out of the other regions in Japan, and it is known to have a rich flavor. Since that first experience, I never forget to try softcream when traveling.”

Lisa, Sweden

“Honestly, I couldn’t tell you for sure exactly when I had my first ever softcream. It’s not that it wasn’t memorable, it’s just blended with the memories of so many other softcream experiences over the years. The earliest memory that I can specifically pinpoint was in Osaka in 2008. It was Hokkaido milk flavor softcream, but in Osaka! It was creamy and almost decadent – and one hundred percent love at first bite.”

Share your softcream memories

Can you remember the first time you tasted softcream? Or perhaps just any memorable moment you’ve had tasting all the flavors? Tell us about it by tagging @tokyoweekender on Instagram Stories.

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