The combination deal features six of the chain’s most popular flavors best enjoyed while hibernating in the warmth of home at the year’s end.

American ice cream chain Cold Stone Creamery has begun making a resurgence in Japan in 2023. While once fairly common in the capital region, the chain was down to only two locations at the start of this year, with none in Tokyo Prefecture since the Lumine Est Shinjuku department store branch closed in 2021. However, it returned to Machida City, Tokyo Prefecture this past March and then to popular Tokyo youth culture district Harajuku in June with Tokyo-only flavors to boot. There are now currently five branches nationwide, with the three other locations in Chiba Prefecture, Tochigi Prefecture, and Mie Prefecture.

▼ The Machida City, Tokyo Prefecure location is near Tamasakai Station in a building shared with a Tsukiji Gindako takoyaki shop.

▼ The Harajuku branch shopfront

Our reporter-with-a-sweet-tooth Mr. Sato was undeniably excited when the Harajuku branch opened earlier this year because of the convenience of its location. While in the area recently, he noticed a special year-end deal that the chain began offering on December 22 in the form of an ice cream takeout box featuring six of its most popular flavors for 3,002 yen (US$21.08), making the combination cheaper than buying the individual flavors by 640 yen.

He went to buy one for himself and watched as the staff prepared all six of the individual flavors then and there Cold Stone-style, which took about ten minutes total. Depending on how busy the shop is, he cautions readers that it could take significantly longer for everything to be ready. The staff also thankfully sent him home with one hour’s worth of dry ice in the box, which allowed him to be anxiety-free about the ice cream melting on the train ride home.

Upon opening the box at home, he was delighted by the colorful nature of the flavors next to each other. Each one was about 120 grams (4.23 ounces), which is slightly larger than the chain’s typical small (“Like it”) size of 100 grams.

He then admired each of the six flavors one by one.

Oreo Overload: Oreo cookies, chocolate chips, and chocolate sauce swirled together with sweet cream ice cream.

Berry Angel of Spring: Strawberry and raspberry chunks with whipped cream in strawberry ice cream.

Strawberry Shortcake Serenade: Strawberries, chunks of sponge cake, and whipped cream mixed with sweet cream ice cream. This one is the most popular flavor in Japan.

Chocolate Devotion: Brownie bits, chocolate chips, and chocolate sauce in a decadent chocolate ice cream.

Party Mint Blue: M&M’s, Oreos, and rainbow sprinkles in a cool blue mint ice cream.

Cheesecake Fantasy: Blueberries, strawberries, and graham crackers mixed in with sweet cheesecake ice cream.

All of these flavors were tantalizing to Mr. Sato, who thought that this particular lineup should be called the “god series.” He wanted to eat all of them at once, but that would definitely give him brain freeze. Instead, he sat down in a warmly heated part of his room and first sampled the Berry Angel of Spring, which he found to be particularly exceptional. He could picture himself eating another dish of ice cream in extreme bliss after getting out of the bath later.

There’s currently no specified end date for Cold Stone Creamery’s year-end takeout box deal, so grab one now for all of your holiday and end-of-the-year gatherings. If we’re lucky, maybe we’ll also see some kind of similar offering in the spring with some of Cold Stone Creamery Japan’s special springtime flavors.

Reference: Cold Stone Creamery Japan
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