I agreed to meet with friends at Uncle Tetsu’s at 9AM on a Sunday morning to avoid a crazy line. I got there just before 9:30AM and the wait was about 30 minutes. Even though there was no line outside, and I was the 8th person inside, there was still a wait because the cakes are baked in small batches. It makes me wonder why they don’t open later and spend that time baking nonstop so when they open they have stacks of cakes packaged and ready to. The total for the cake is $10 and they only take cash. I did not bother buying Madeleines, though they looked like flat muffins, and nothing like a Madelaine. When we left, there was a line forming down the street – don’t get excited when you enter the shop – the line snakes inside as well.
I had a bite of it warm and it was okay. My friends and I agreed to try the cake both warm and after putting it in the fridge for at least 3 hours. I actually preferred the cake cold, and there was plenty to share. I was not blown away by this cake because I had the same one at Kaiju several weeks earlier, though according to a friend, Kaiju will no longer be selling this cheesecake – only the tofu cheesecake.
Would I return? No. The cake is light and tasty, but there was nothing about the cake that had me craving more. I did not eat the last bite thinking, “I can’t wait to have another piece!” Though I have to admit that I am curious about the matcha cheesecake that they will be selling at the store next door. That cheesecake will not be available until August 2015.
All the hype and talk about Uncle Tetsu’s had me wanting to know more about Japanese cheesecake and Uncle Tetsu himself! Apparently the first Uncle Tetsu opened 25 years ago in Hakata, Japan and the crazy wait times are no only the case in Toronto! Though it’s pretty cool that the first city the company chose to open an Uncle Tetsu’s in outside Asia was Toronto.
An article on the Globe and Mail stated the following, and it cracked me up!
The Toronto location even has an (unaffiliated) Twitter account called @tetsulineup, run by a lawyer named Alex Colangelo, who lives in the building across the street. Mr. Colangelo posts pictures of the lineup.
“People are tweeting at me, ‘What’s the lineup now?’ ” he said. The lines usually start forming just after 10 a.m. weekdays, but often far earlier on weekends. The worst time to show up is typically around 5 p.m., he said.
Mr. Colangelo has never tried Uncle Tetsu’s cheesecake. “I’m not a big carb eater,” he confessed.
So how do you make those suckers? According to this image, it’s not so simple! Sigh.