Contributed by Tanya S.

Hiroyuki Takahashi, an ex-mountain climber from Japan, came to America 30 years ago. He started his career as a waiter, saved his money and opened a noodle bar. With the success of his noodle bar, he opened another restaurant Takahachi, which serves delicious fresh sushi in the East Village. He opened his second restaurant in Tribeca and now has opened Takahachi Bakery downtown on Murray Street.

When people think of Japanese food, sushi naturally comes to mind. But after World War II, bread grew in popularity. Using Japanese flavors, Takahachi has over 60 types of breads including: sweet red bean paste rolls, seaweed rolls and wasabi rolls. The sweet red bean paste rolls are unlike Chinese red bean rolls as they are not as sweet. The seaweed rolls may sound strange but they have a salty flavor to them. The wasabi rolls are my favorite. It is not hot but has a light flavoring of wasabi. Wasabi is not only in the bread. They have an orange wasabi mousse cakelayers of light moist cake with different layers of cream. The wasabi gives an interesting flavor to the orange mousse. I cannot count how many of these I have eaten. The yuzu is a Japanese citrus fruit and Takahachi makes it into a delicious tart. Light and creamy with a perfect sweetened crust, the yuzu tart is a perfect dessert. The pastries have a French influence and this includes their selection of macaroons. The exotic flavors include Matcha (green tea), pumpkin, goma (black sesame) and yuzu. Bigger and fluffier then the traditional size, they are still crispy, chewy and light. In the summer they make homemade gelato that cannot be missed.