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Tuesday, July 23, 2024

Koreatown dessert shop goes viral with trending Tanghulu’s popularity

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A Tanghulu shop that opened in Los Angeles Koreatown is a trending topic.

Tangtastic, located in the plaza at 7th Street and Vermont Avenue, has gone viral and is gaining popularity among younger-generation dessert seekers.

Tanghulu is a Chinese snack of candied fruits, especially skewered and coated in sugar. Its recipes and videos of eating Tanghulu have been trending on social media, making it a must-try dessert in Korea. It is originally made with hawthorn fruit, but its variety has expanded to many different fruits, such as strawberries, green grapes, and mandarins. Its crispy texture, sweet and sour flavor, and bursting juice with a bite have gained huge popularity among Gen Z.

“We have an average of 80 customers a day, and our best-selling menu is the strawberry Tanghulu,” said Ken Choi, CEO of Tangtastic.

Ken Choi, CEO of Tangtastic demonstrates Tanghulu. [Sangjin Kim, The Korea Daily]

Tangtastic said its Tanghulu is made with fresh fruit delivered every morning and coated in precisely measured sugar coating to make the “sweet but still preserving the original flavor of the fruit.”

“The fruit is lightly dipped in syrup to create a thin coating and then immediately blow-dried, making it crispy outside and moist inside. Customers can choose different flavors, including strawberry, grape, mandarin, cherry, and cherry tomatoes.”

At Tangtastic, each Tanghulu is $5 for a skewer of one fruit kind and $6 for mixed fruits. It is also known for creative drink menus, such as strawberry cheesecake latte, mango cheesecake latte, blueberry cheesecake latte, and strawberry pistachio latte.

“The best way to enjoy Tanghulu is to eat it right at the store before it starts to melt,” Choi said. “We pack them in an insulated bag, but it can melt. So as soon as you get home, put it in the freezer and eat it cold to make it more delicious.”

BY HAEUN CHUNG, HOONSIK WOO [chung.haeun@koreadaily.com]