>> Hisaya Kyoto Chestnuts | Eat the World Los Angeles

Wednesday, 24 November 2021

Hisaya Kyoto Chestnuts

JAPAN 🇯🇵
Carson Street facade
COVID-19 UPDATE: Most of the shop, including the tatami mat area, is still partitioned by plastic screens, for now there are two tables in front for people that would like to have their coffees and snacks immediately.

After about ten years of business in Kyoto starting in 2001, Hisaya started opening branches throughout Japan and the world. Torrance finally landed this tiny store in 2014, serving the famous roasted chestnuts harvested from mountain slopes surrounding Kyoto. In addition, the shop serves a wide array of chestnut-flavored and infused items like coffee, soft serve ice cream, donuts and other sweets.

Typically in Japan chestnuts are enjoyed in the first days of a new year, representing both success and strength. There are two other locations in Orange County that are seasonal for this reason, but this Torrance shop is open year round.

Food items displayed in case

Well wishes on Post-It notes on the wall
A wall of satisfied customers.

The featured products are of course the Kyoto chestnuts (below, sold in bags of 6, 10, and 20 pieces). These are roasted and then steamed to create an optimal char around the tender meat of the nut. They will tell you all about the nutrients of the chestnut as well, but really most people are coming for the taste.

In and around Kyoto at the right time of the year you will come across vendors on the side of the road that are roasted chestnut specialists. Customers seem to know the best ones, whose families have been in the business for generations, and have lines along the road requiring a decent queue.

Kyoto chestnuts, bag of 6

Chestnut latte, black sesame chestnut donut, chestnut cake

Lovers of chestnuts will be happy to know they can chestnut cakes, donuts, cookies, and coffees as well, which all seem to be made with natural flavors.
 
The dense donuts, like many of the desserts, can also include black sesame, matcha green tea, and other flavors combined with chestnuts. They are served cold, perfect for their denseness and delicious when dunked into a chestnut latte.

Chestnut cookie

Black sesame chestnut snow storm
Black sesame chestnut Snow Storm.

You can get a simple soft serve cone with their chestnut ice cream, but even more interesting is the variety of Chestnut Snow Storms (above), an obvious ode to Dairy Queen's famous Blizzard. They have the black sesame and matcha again, both blended with a few bits of candied chestnuts, but even offer Oreo and Butterfinger just like the Blizzard.

Nothing is overly sweet here, allowing a customer to sample a few different things without getting overwhelmed. Boxes of 6 or more of the cookies and donuts are also available if you want to bring a unique treat to your next dinner party.

📍 1757 W. Carson Street, Torrance, South Bay

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