A day of sun! Let the weather gods be praised for this break in the festival of downpours that is Japan's rainy season, which gave me a chance to go see the ajisai at Hakusan Shrine (with matching nails, no less!) Behold the glorious riot of pastel colours!
Thanks to the huge number of temples and shrines, most of the little streets of Bunkyo-ku seem to be redolent of incense, as well as gloriously quiet. As much as I enjoy the sparkling, oshare areas of Tokyo, hanging out in Yanesen seems to be truly good for the soul.
The kakigori at Himitsutou are really fabulous, since they do not use the common, awful sugary syrup. We tried the yogurt with amanatsu and the akashiso ones, and they were fantastic! Not too sweet, with the true flavours of the toppings coming through, and the ice is shaved with a hand-powered apparatus from the Showa era. I have officially changed my mind about kakigori.
Lunch was unfortunately both pricy and disappointing, and after wandering about a bit more we ended up at a matcha place right near the beginning of Yanaka Ginzan, semi-hidden by the stairs. The brown rice choux with sesame cream and matcha cream were impressive, and the matcha latte so strong that I may not sleep tonight!