I grow up with Swensens ice cream cake but I've never seen any ice cream cakes in Japan until this year. Inspired by the french term "glacier" which means ice-cream maker, Glaciel, is the latest concept by Hokkaido's famous cheesecake brand LeTao that specializes in entremets glacé (ice cream cakes).
The head pastry chef Hiroyuki Emori from Hokkaido had also been trained as the famous Yokohama patisserie Avril de Bergue. Once you step inside this chic Omotesando patisserie boutique, you will be wowed by the number of beautiful ice cream cakes, but sadly, not every flavour (especially those that I love) are available in slices.
As such, I decided to try the dine-in dessert, an ice cream meringue in a pool of fruit compote sauce. Instead of the tropical mango Passionfruit version, I went for all red for the Rouge (¥1500/ 10 sets per day only) The taste frolicked between the two spectrums of sour and sweet as the centre of the meringue ball sat a sherbet, which makes this a not too overwhelmingly creamy treat. However, the size was smaller than the picture shown and I didn't think the overall complexity justify the price.
Instead of the plated desserts, their ice cream induced greater satisfaction as they are rich, creamy. There are about 20 flavours at any time but you can't judge by the looks as every ice cream is shielded from heat within metal containers. Along classics like hazelnut, pumpkin or matcha, there are seasonal flavours such as Yamanashi Momotakeya San's peach with lemon verbena.
Fran Cafe (coffee, vanilla, salted crumbles)
Also, I highly recommend you to try their cakes which offered some stunning textures and flavors. Take for example the Fran Cafe (¥550), which is not a chocolate but coffee mousse cake, very much resembling a bittersweet tiramisu with a crunchy base that was kissed with salt.
Similarly, I love the Tart Pamplemousse Verrine (¥550),. While I enjoyed the refreshing yet sweet Florida Grapefruit compote, it was the buttery crumbles that made this verrine shone brilliantly like no other. The hints of salt in the crumbles played an important role in enhancing the overall balance of flavours. I can't say for the mousse component but the sable crumbs can easily surpass Monsieur Pierre Herme.
Carb カルブ ¥550 (hazelnut dacquoise, orange cream, milk chocolate feuilletine)
This might not appear the most exciting cake but I seldom come across the pairing of hazelnut with orange. The orange cream exemplified the silkiness of fine pastry Creme, whose mild citrusy flavour propelled the pleasant noir to the fore.
シリアルCereal (Matcha/Kinako) ¥315
If you no longer have space for desserts or just like to drop by for their ice cream, never forget to get one of their "Cereal". They are definitely the least healthy cereal, even worse than granola but they are SO TASTY. These crumbles are thicker and chunkier than an average Starbucks cookie, blended with a hefty dose of Macademia nuts, matcha chocolate chunka, cranberries,etc. Don't contemplate sharing this with anyone as it is . It would be blissful to pour them into a bowl of warm milk and savour then to the very last bits.