May 28, 2012

Pariya Aoyama

For about a month now, my friends and I have been planning to hit up Pariya in Aoyama. This restaurant is rather well known for it's homemade gelato flavors and cupcakes. They also have a cafeteria style area with salads and pasta dishes. We went for the desserts.

Pariya is a nice little restaurant located between Omote-sando and Shibuya. It's closer to Omote-sando, so I recommend getting out the B2 exit there. Walk down the street until you pass the really big Kinokuniya and turn right immediately past that building. Go straight and turn left at the next street. Pariya will be the restaurant on the left-hand corner. It has glass windows all down the front, so it's easy to spot.

From what I understand, Pariya mixes up their flavors of cupcakes and gelato every so often. When we went, the flavors were mostly fruits, with a few standards thrown in. I didn't think to list all the flavors, but the gelato flavors I remember are milk chocolate, fresh milk, salt milk, melon, orange, kiwi, lemon, tomato (not a typo!), and coconut and honey. There weren't that many cupcakes available the day we went, but we got about 5 of them to split between the three of us. We ordered Mandarin Orange, Raspberry Chocolate, Plain Buttercram, Carrot Cheesecake and Pistachio Chocolate.

Here we have our three (or in my case, four) gelatos. From the left are coconut-honey, milk chocolate and fresh milk, and melon. You can also see two of the cupcakes in the back. The gelato are melting because instead of just putting all our cupcakes on one tray, the guy had to put them each on their own plate with a separate napkin and fork. Nice, but hardly needed with just three of us!

 The carrot cheesecake cupcake was by far the most moist of all we tried. It also had a subtle spice of cinnamon and cloves. The icing wasn't really cream cheese, or if it was it didn't taste much like it, but it was a good butter cream and not too sweet. The crumbly stuff on top was supposed to be the graham cracker crust of a cheesecake.

The mandarin orange cupcake was another favorite. The icing was just a bit tangy and the candied orange peel was a nice touch. The cupcake itself was a bit dry in texture, but still had good flavor.

Unfortunately, I don't have individual shots of the other three cupcakes as my companions were getting really impatient to dig in and our gelato was melting. Back left is the plain butter cream, back right is the raspberry chocolate and the front one is the pistachio chocolate.

 Taste testing. =)

The raspberry chocolate was my personal favorite. The icing was tangy, not overly sweet and had a strong, natural raspberry flavor. The pistachio came in second place with it's fantastic icing and pistachio nuts. All of us disliked the plain butter cream. The icing tasted like unsalted whipped butter with zero sugar or flavor added. Gross.

Overall, the cupcakes were good, but dry. These aren't the lush, soft cupcakes I'm used to from back home! I recommend letting them warm up to room temperature before you eat them. We found the first few bites rather dry, but after they sat in the sun for a bit, the flavors deepened, the cake became more moist and the icing seeped into the cake. The only one that did not improve at all was the plain butter cream.

For five cupcakes, two regular gelato and my double scoop gelato, the price was just over 2000 yen. Very reasonable! I'll be popping back in there for the odd gelato to go from now on!

I recommend this place for a hot summer day. The gelato was refreshing and although I didn't sample their salads or pasta dishes in the cafeteria section, they looked fresh, healthy and delicious. The menu is very reasonable and the staff friendly. It's also in a great location, surrounded by small, trendy boutiques. Doesn't get much better than that!


  1. nice!

    p.s. I'm having a giveaway if you'd like to check it out! xx

  2. Great cupcakes heads up, and convenient location too. Have you tried Bubby's in Yokohma or the Yaesu underground in Nihonbashi for pie?