Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Dessert Place Review - Mochilato (Irvine, Ca)

After having an amazing Chinese dinner with my husband at Sam-Woo , we headed to Mochilato down the street in City of Irvine.  I had been longing to try this dessert place for a long while.  The place is located inside a stripe mall.  As soon as we walked in, we noticed that the place is pretty new, clean and bright.  It's surely a good place to hang out with big group of friends (they do have few very BIG tables) or just grab a coffee/tea and some desserts with your date after dinner. 

So what is Mochilato?!  Here is the answer from me (not an offical answer, but I guess my answer is 99% correct.)  Mochi + Gelato = Mochilato, get it?!

According to Wikipedia, mochi is a Japanese rice cake made of glutinous rice (not to be confused with gluten) pounded into paste and molded into shape. In Japan it is traditionally made in a ceremony called mochitsuki. While also eaten year-round, mochi is a traditional food for the Japanese New Year and is commonly sold and eaten during that time. Similar snacks are prominent in Hawaii, South Korea, Taiwan (where it is called 麻糬, Hokkien môa-chî or Mandarin máshu), Cambodia, the Philippines, Thailand, and Indonesia.  However, when we talk about mochi in the States, we are often talking about the mochi ice cream.  Mochi ice cream and mochi is different (they both made with rice dough; however, one is filled with ice-cream, one without.)

Mochi ice-cream originally created by Lotte, as Yukimi Daifuku in 1981, the company first made the product by using a rice starch instead of sticky rice and a type of ice milk instead of real ice-cream. Mochi ice cream is now an internationally recognized food. Current marketing names include Mikawaya's "Mochi Ice Cream" in the United States (also used by other companies), which began production of what is now known as mochi ice cream in the United States in 1993

I am pretty sure a lot of us had gelato before.  Here is a brief summary about this sweet little treat. 
Gelato (Italian pronunciation: [dʒeˈlaːto]; plural: gelati) is the italian word for ice cream and sorbet. Italians use the word gelato to mean a sweet treat that is served frozen. Gelato is made with milk, cream, various sugars, and flavoring such as fresh fruit and nut purees.

Mochilato serve about 10 different favors of mochis and gelatos daily.  On the top of it, they also serve Beard Papa's cream puffs (the servers inject the filling of your choce to your cream puffs right after you place your order), traditional Japanese and Korean desserts, French macaroons, Taiwanese/Japanese style shaved ice and they also have a simple dining menu.  



French macaroons

Traditional Japanese and Korean desserts

Drink menu

We ordered two different favors of mochis (mango and strawberry) and 2 cream puffs.  What make their mochis different than others?  They use gelato for the filling instead of ice cream.  It makes the texture softer and less dense and sweet than the normal mochis.  The mango mochi tasted pretty refreshing.  However, the strawberry one tasted a little bits too artifical.  The cream puffs were good as usual (if you have tried Beard Papa's, you know what I mean).  The mochi and cream puff are about $2.50USD per each. 
Beard Papa's cream puffs filled with cream custard

Logo of  Beard Papa's

Bottom: mango mochi, top: strawberry mochi

Inside of Mochilato - new, clean and pretty casual.

Gelato  inside of the mango mochi

Here are address and a summary of my review:

Address and Phone Number of Mochilato: 
14310 Culver Dr., Suite E, Irvine, CA, 92604
(949) 559-1116
Hours:  10 a.m. to midnight daily.
Reservation:  Not necessary, walk in will be better.
Price Range (out of 5):  $$
Service (out of 5):   **** (the cashier lady was pretty patient to us and gave us recommendations of what favors we should get.)
Atmosphere:  Kid friendly
Attire:  Casual (some UC, Irvine students even wore their louge wears and flip flops.) 
Payment:  Cash, debit cards and major credit cards are all accepted
Good for big group:  Yes (they even provide some board games.)
Good for date night:  Yes (the night we went was pretty quiet, music was also quite relaxing.)


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