Tohoen, a traditional Japanese confectionery specialist, already gained popularity thanks to their pandemic wagashi, but they are also known for their manju animals like the manju cow that they released for the Year of the Ox last year. As 2022 will be celebrated as the Year of the Tiger, their New Year sweets have been created to reflect the next lucky animal.

The theme of these sweets is of course tigers, but also Japanese tradition, which is why the tigers have been designed with kabuki stage makeup in mind. The set is called 'Tora-ditional', a portmanteau of tora (the Japanese word for tiger) and traditional. Tohoen say that these wagashi were created through making use of their expertise as a long-standing sweet specialist shop, but with a modern and creative spirit.

There’s three types of manju to be had. There’s the white tiger of oriental legend, which has a smooth red bean paste filling.

Next is a cute recreation of a tiger’s paw. This is made out of soft gyuhi to mimic the soft texture of the big cat’s feet, and it has a pistachio flavoured filling.

Lastly there’s the yellow tiger, symbolising bright hope and happiness, filled with coarse red bean paste.

This tasty New Year set will go on sale from 25th December until the end of January 2022, costing 1200 yen for the full set of three. It can be found in branches of Tohoen or ordered through their online store.

By - grape Japan editorial staff.