The Story Behind Taiyaki NYC, the Insta-Worthy Ice Cream Chain That Spawned a Thousand Copycats

If you've seen incredible animal-shaped ice cream cones on Instagram, chances are that they got their inspiration from Taiyaki NYC.

The dessert shop first opened its doors in Manhattan, New York in 2016 with incredible fish-shaped cones filled with swirled soft serve, and now has additional locations in Brooklyn, Miami and Toronto. From what we've heard, their incredible cones somehow taste just as good as they look.

We wanted to learn a little more about how the iconic ice creams came to be, so we reached out to Taiyaki NYC co-founder Jimmy Chen, who told us the story behind the Insta-worthy treats.

The Inspiration

Jimmy Chen: My business partners and I are extremely inspired by Asian culture, and especially Japanese Culture. When we traveled back to Japan, we fell in love with the taiyaki. It is such a recognized symbol in Japanese culture that is customary to give tai-shaped pastries as thank you gifts to guests at wedding parties as common gestures of celebration, prosperity and luck.


View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Taiyaki NYC® (@taiyakinyc) on

 

Making It Happen

JC:  We believe in strong execution that focuses on the details, being innovative and creative. We spent a lot of time perfecting all of our recipes when we were first starting the business. We would spend all day at each other's houses on the recipes and ate a lot of taiyaki prior to opening.


View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Taiyaki NYC® (@taiyakinyc) on

 

Most Insta-Worthy Dessert

JC: The unicorn taiyaki or unicorn float.


View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Taiyaki NYC® (@taiyakinyc) on

 

Tastiest Dessert

JC: I would say all of the items, but if I were to give you an answer, it would be the Straight Out of Japan. It consists of a red bean-filled taiyaki fish waffle cone, matcha and black sesame ice cream swirl adorned with mochi stick and chocolate wafer stick.


View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Taiyaki NYC® (@taiyakinyc) on

 

Most Underrated Dessert

JC: The most underrated item on our menu is the traditional taiyaki. People know us for ice cream but at our core, we are about bringing the treasure of the taiyaki back to the States as well. The traditional taiyaki is filled with either red bean or custard and is one of my favorite items.


View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Taiyaki NYC® (@taiyakinyc) on

 

 

If you love beautiful desserts, click HERE to see Taiyaki NYC's desserts among 15 of the most beautiful ice cream cones on Instagram.