Mochi battle: Osaka-ya vs. Benkyodo vs. Shuei-do vs...
Curious to hear other hounds who have sampled all three to weigh in on their favorite spot for mochi and other wagashi. I find that the flavors and selection are pretty similar across all (chunky/cream peanut butter, chofu, shiro-an, and the like), but I cannot kick my habit for Osaka-ya. While all three are excellent, I love the silky texture of the bean paste, the delicate flavor and softness of the mochi, and the spongy-to-solid ratio of the pancake on the chofu. I live in the East Bay, so location is not so much a drawback as all three are some kind of a trek for me. However, both Osaka-ya and Shuei-do serve shave ice/kakigori in the hot months, which is a big plus for me—that barely-there finely shaved ice cannot be beat. Anyone care to vote for a favorite, or suggest a new contender?
Are you talking about Osaka-ya in Sacramento? I looked it up on Yelp, haven't been.
I did like Benkyodo's fresh strawberry but it does have artificial strawberry flavoring inside.
If I was close to SF Japantown I'd go to Benkyodo, closed Sun.
If I was in San Jose I'd go to Shuei-do.
Shuei-Do Manju Shop
217 Jackson St, San Jose, CA
1747 Buchanan St, San Francisco, CA
I haven't tried Osaka-ya's mochi. I'll have to be on the lookout.
Between the other two, I prefer Shuei-do's. It seems to have a slightly firmer texture and is not as sweet as Benkyodo's mochi. Which is not to say that I would turn my nose up at Benkyodo - I was just there this Saturday!
That does sound odd - I haven't ever encountered that and I've gotten their mochi via Tokyo Fish in Berkeley a few times. Where was this - and what kind did you try?
I have had Benkyodo mochi from Berkeley Bowl that I did not think was as good as from their own shop. But I could be biased...
I like them all, but I'd say Osaka-ya is the best.
Ah shucks, the battle between 2 and 3 is close. I consider them different! ;-)
not sure how authentic this is, but eiji in san francisco sells amazing strawberry mochi. the interior is a ripe strawberry, coated with red bean paste, and then covered with homemade mochi. it is a really tasty combination. they also have chestnut mochi right now, but i haven't tried it.