Taiyaki in San Mateo
Sweet Breams, a store that prides itself in selling chibi-taiyaki (small taiyaki), just opened on Sunday. I tried it out yesterday evening and I actually enjoyed it. The fishies were warm, slightly crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside, and the fillings were pretty tasty. My personal favorites are Nutella and vanilla. The service was friendly, the interior minimalistic and cute (albeit incomplete, according to the owner), and is within walking distance of a lot of places in downtown San Mateo. Wish I'd have taken some pictures of my food--I'd love to have shared it with everyone.
Any thoughts? Has anyone else tried them out? What do you think?
Website seems to suggest that way, along with Equator coffee, teas, sodas
"In the Spring of 2007, two sisters visited Kyoto, Japan and the seeds for what would become Sweet Breams were sown. Now, only a year later, Sweet Breams has become a reality. As the only taiyakiya on the Peninsula, we are extremely proud and excited to bring chibi taiyaki to the Bay Area.
All of our taiyaki are created fresh every day from scratch. We follow self-developed recipes and use only the finest ingredients such as Scharffen Berger chocolates and Kum Moon bean pastes. We are also a proud purveyor of Equator coffees and teas."
Per their facebook pages, the two sisters last name Wong (not related to Melanie I suppose). It appears that they imported the casts for the taiyaki and are using local sources for the red bean and chocolate fillings.
Ooh. Taiyaki. My favorites are ones from tan Edo-era bakery in Japan. Was the azuki smooth or did it have bits of the bean (tsubu-an) in it? Also, I can imagine the fillings for the nutella and chocolate, but the vanilla-- was that a custard or a cream filling? Or shiro-an infused with vanilla flavor?
Must go check this out sometime. . ..
The photos of the taiyaki on yelp aren't as elegant as this wiki picture, but general idea.
It says that in Japan occasionally they are filled with sausage.
From Sweet Breams website
Be in know with the following code words and be a savvy Breamie!
TOKYO: 13 chibi taiyaki for the same price as a school.
EDO: Taiyaki sans fillings — they taste like madeleines!
220 2nd Avenue, San Mateo, CA
I ordered a school today with my secret menu words. They were made to order and delicious. They are the perfect size for my 3 year old. She particularly loved the chocolate and nutella. I liked the azuki. I will definitely try the vanilla next time. She is going to offer different fillings later on. She even said they are planning black sesame. They were very nice and we will definitely be back.
Since I was in the area I decided to try it. Small shop that won't let you take pics of the inside. Some tables in the middle & some chairs on the sides & along the tables. Big screen TV with the menu for Back to the Future (on DVD).
Taiyaki-Japanese fish-shaped waffle cake filled with 4 signature flavors: azuki (red bean), vanilla, chocolate, nutella. You have to buy either 1/2 school (6) $3.25 or school (12) $5.50. They are tiny so 12 is a good amount for 1-2 ppl.
I got 3 of each of the signature flavors. $5.50 + tax = $5.95. Had to wait maybe 10-15 min. since they are made fresh to order. It was piping hot when I finally did get them though.
I liked the vanilla & nutella the best. Chocolate & azuki were just ok for me.
Other items they have:
coffee-medium $1.75/large $2
tea- medium $1.5/lg $1.75
bottled water $1.25
Special occasion flavors start at $2.75 EACH. I didn't ask if they had any when I went. Too expensive for me.
Sweet Breams t-shirt $22 - expensive!
220 2nd Ave @ Ellsworth Ave.
Attaching 2 pics.
RW, those weren't pennies. We were walking on the street for San Mateo's 2008 Festa Italiana Community Street Fair (not worth going) & I got some of the Bot dots from the road in the pic.
The taiyaki are ok, hard to taste anything since they are so tiny. I'd stick to May's shop in SF Japantown.
Festa Italiana post: