Matcha is an acquired taste. For first-time matcha triers, the flavour can seem a bit bizarre – a mixture of bitterness, tea, and a little grassy. But the more you try matcha, the more you begin to appreciate the subtle flavours. Western desserts tend to be very sweet, and this Japanese flavour appreciates the subtlest hint of sweetness. If you’re a matcha fan looking for matcha spots in London, here are eight locations that you need to visit when you’re crazing that green tea flavour.
Tsujiri is the place to go if you’re craving matcha big time. From matcha lattes to sundaes, floats and dango, you’re guaranteed to find something for any season and weather. They have a range of sundaes and ice cream combinations to choose from, but I highly recommend the matcha crispy sundae complete with red bean, mochi, and topped off with a Tsujiri wafer. Tsujiri has two locations, one in Soho and another in Chinatown, so definitely stop by if you’re in the area.
Kova Pattiserie is the King of matcha cakes. The bakery offers unique matcha cakes that are to die for, such as matcha tarts, cake rolls, gateaus, matcha tiramisu, and the coveted matcha mille crepe, a cake made of alternating layers of matcha crepe and cream. The matcha mille crepe is a must-try cake that you can’t miss out on. Its the perfect balance of cake and cream, and creates a wonderful texture in your mouth.
Soft Serve Society is located in Shoreditch’s Box Park and is a must-visit if you’re big on sundaes and ice creams. As the name suggests, they specialise in soft serve ice cream and offer a variety of cones, flavours and toppings. The matcha ice cream is exceptionally good, and if you’re looking for something even more indulgent, they also serve stacked freakshakes. The matcha freakshake can be a challenge to finish, stacked high with desserts and a slice of matcha cake, but the taste, aesthetics and experience male it 100% with it.
Tombo has multiple branches across London but my favourite has to be the South Kensington location. They serve everything green tea, from drinks like lattes, frappes and milkshakes to desserts like cheesecakes and tarts. Tombo also offers vegan options meaning there’s something on the menu for everyone.
Gazaspecialisess in bingsu, a Korean shaved ice dessert made from milk. Fruit toppings are popular, but the creamy base makes it perfect with matcha. Rather than normal milk, a matcha bingsu uses a sweet green tea flavoured base that’s topped off with red bean and matcha ice cream.
6. Fuwa Fuwa
Located in the Brunswick Centre, Fuwa Fuwa is the home of Japanese souffle pancakes – which are light, airy and very jiggly. A knife slices through them as if they’re butter, and the range of available toppings means there’s a favourite for everyone. To fix your matcha cravings, the matcha option comes with souffle pancakes dusted with matcha powder and matcha-flavoured cream.
Necco is a small restaurant found in Islington’s Exmouth Market. Although it’s tucked away, it’s certainly not hard to miss thanks to the pink exterior and “kawaii” design. Necco offers an all-day menu, but the true highlight is their cafe where they make fresh Japanese cakes and desserts, with over half of the menu being dedicated to matcha flavours.
Biju is my favourite bubble tea spot and it’s easy to say that they do an amazing matcha blend. You can order the traditional matcha milk tea with various toppings, or opt for the matcha cream tea, a salted cream tea that gives you a drink that’s both sweet and savoury – the best of both worlds. If you’re not a big fan of sweet drinks, this is the one for you. Of course, like all milk teas, you can choose to have it hot or cold depending on the season. Biju can be found in Soho, White City’s Westfield mall, and at their new store in South Kensington.