The perfect holiday dessert for your Instagram

Stephen Yang

Stephen Yang

Could there be anything more festive than the image of a fish eating a decorated Douglas fir? Probably, yes. But that doesn’t make Japanese dessert newcomer Taiyaki NYC’s Christmas creation any less delightful.

Open since September, the Little Italy shop is already an Instagram star thanks to its taiyaki — a pancake-thick, fish-shaped waffle cone with an open mouth ready to receive the soft-serve flavor of your choosing.

And to celebrate the season, the store is now serving holiday-tree taiyaki ($7). The signature taiyaki is stuffed with red-bean paste and topped with a tall swirl of matcha ice cream decked with peppermint and green sprinkles, drizzled with a garland of caramel, and finished with a sweet golden star tree-topper.

Tai, a type of sea bream, is a symbol of goodwill and fortune in Japan, and tai-shaped pastries are often given as gifts. On what inspired the shop’s opening, co-owner and chef Jimmy Chen says, “We really wanted to bring taiyaki, that represents so much culture, back to our lives here in NYC.”

Taiyaki NYC, 119 Baxter St.;