Kyotofu 705 Ninth Avenue, New York, NY 10019 is a cute Japanese dessert bar (though savory meals are served) with a young feel. They specialize in a Soft Tofu dessert, which is very similar to a Chinese favorite of mine: Do Fu Hwa. It is silky soft with a creme caramel-like effect, but made with soy milk instead of dairy, perfect for lactard’s.  The subtle tofu flavor is accented by the Kuromitsu black sugar syrup on top, resulting in a cool tongue feel that lands between custard and jello. I’ve tried the black sesame version (at an off-site event) as well, and it is equally pure, simple, and balanced. Plus, it’s dessert with some nutritional value.

Signature Soft Tofu 2

I am always a fan of tasting menus and here, a 3-course Kaiseki at $17 is enough for two to share. (Perfect, I was with my friend Emily.) It starts with the signature soft tofu, but the rest varies seasonally. On Sat night, the second course was actually a three-part tasting in itself. The ginger-y rice pudding was perhaps my favorite, warm on the bottom and topped with a cool fruit sorbet.

ginger rice pudding

The Chocolate Miso Cake is respectable, though not as interesting as other offerings here. It’s soft and dense, like truffle cake. The miso adds a faint saltiness and earthiness.

Chocolate Miso Cake

The Green Tea Creme Brulee is excellent, a smooth custard with a fragrant green tea flavor.

Green Tea Creme Brulee

The last course is soft-serve ice cream, a twist of spicy chocolate and chestnut that underwhelmed us. The chocolate wasn’t quite spicy and weak on the chocolate too. The chestnut didn’t have the faintest essence of chestnut. We thought perhaps it was confused with butter pecan?

Spicy Chocolate and Chestnut Soft-serve

Like traditional Japanese food, these desserts are not for everyone. Kyotofu offers a lighter, more subtle approach. The prices are reasonable and I would have enjoyed it if it wasn’t for the service (or lack of) throughout. There is a feeling of being invisible that I have not experienced in a long time. I’ll keep this is mind for take-out next time.

posted by jessica at 11:11 AM Filed under Asian, Coffee, Tea, and Dessert, Restaurants. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.