1. Parfait
    Photo: Melon and Roman
  2. The Strings
    Photo: The StringsBlueberry Cheese Parfait
  3. Tokyo Station Hotel
    Photo: The Tokyo Station Hotel Melon Parfait
  4. 資生堂パーラー
    Photo: Shiseido Parlour Strawberry Parfait

7 decadent parfaits in Tokyo you should be eating right now

From Ginza’s Shiseido Parlour to Melon and Roman in Kagurazaka, these artful desserts taste as good as they look

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Written by
Emma Steen
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You don’t have to have a sweet tooth to find joy in a parfait – these glorious desserts are impressive just to look at, let alone eat. Plus, the variety of components in them means you don’t get bored of eating it before you reach the bottom of the tall serving glass. 

With the weather getting hotter by the day, now is as good a time as any to treat yourself to the ice cream sundae’s extravagant cousin. The city’s most popular parfait parlours often have long lines forming around the block within half an hour of opening, but we promise these ones are well worth the wait.

RECOMMENDED: The best dessert buffets in Tokyo

Parfait amour

  • Restaurants
  • Kagurazaka

A prized summer fruit is the glorious Japanese muskmelon, with fragrant, bright green flesh that seeps juice the moment you slice into it. At this melon speciality store in Kagurazaka, you can order a parfait that uses a quarter of a melon that would normally go for ¥8,000 on average. 

This parfait (¥2,800) is the shop’s most popular item and is made with a generous amount of fresh sliced melon as a base, topped with tart lemon granita and lemon sponge, followed by more melon wedges.

If you’re a fan of blueberry cheesecake, this seasonal parfait (¥1,900) found at the top of Omotesando will be right up your alley. The flavours in this particularly decorative creation are as well balanced as its miniature cheesecake and biscuit topping. A base of honey lemon jelly is topped with fluffy blueberry mousse, assam tea jelly and a scoop each of cream cheese ice cream and berry sorbet, with a spoonful of pistachios and almond biscuit pieces that provide a pleasant crunch.

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The Shiseido Parlour in Ginza has been serving classic yoshoku (Japanese-style Western food) dishes since 1902. The Shiseido Parlour Restaurant offerings are simple, with just a few signature items reminiscent of the mid-20th century like omurice (rice wrapped in an omelette), cabbage rolls and melt-in-your mouth croquettes. 

The menu of the café on the third floor is equally focussed, but this doesn’t bother customers who are only after one thing – the classic strawberry parfait (¥1,800). Stacked generously with perfectly shaped berries, rich milky ice cream and strawberry sauce, this decadent dessert is undoubtedly one of the most sought-after parfaits in the city.

Originally established in Kyoto, Saryo Tsujiri is a café that specialises in whisked matcha and green tea desserts, particularly a series of green tea parfaits that attracts a long queue of customers on any given day. 

It’s hard to decide what to order here when all the variations look equally tempting – the parfaits are all topped with traditional Kyoto confectionery ranging from golden chestnuts soaked in syrup to soft and chewy balls of shiratama (sweet rice dumplings). Each of them also include different combinations of matcha, hojicha (roasted green tea) and milk flavoured ice creams. 

This Matcha Castella Parfait comes layered with chunks of matcha castella sponge cake, a scoop each of matcha and milk ice cream and a base of kanten jelly in green tea syrup 1,342).

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The Peach Melba Parfait from Tooth Tooth Tokyo
Photo: Tooth Tooth Tokyo

The Peach Melba Parfait from Tooth Tooth Tokyo

Tooth Tooth French bistro in Ebisu has just added a new selection of grown up parfaits to its dinnertime dessert menu, including a tropical fruit and dark berry chocolate parfait, as well as a classic peach Melba (¥1,700)

First served at London’s Savoy Hotel in honour of Australian opera singer Nellie Melba, this dessert features a winning combination of fresh peaches, creamy vanilla ice cream and tart raspberry sauce. This limited-time item will only be around for the summer, so don’t wait too long to drop by Ebisu for a late-night treat. 

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Tokyo’s fruit speciality shops may be perplexing to some, but aside from offering an array of pricey gift-wrapped fruit, these stores also tend to offer some of the best fruit parfaits in the city. 

Horiuchi Kaijitsuen, which has just opened a new café at Tokyo Skytree, is one of the best of them. This Instagram-worthy tower puts banana splits to shame with a whole caramelised banana, chocolate ice cream and your own little jug of sauce for drizzling (or drowning) your parfait in chocolate.

More treats in Tokyo

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