Nostargic Modern LeTAO

The Amiable Tower of Otaru

Otaru is a land of natural beauty surrounded by the mountains and sea, and the streets evoke nostalgic feelings with the canal and historic buildings. LeTAO's founder Kawagoe strongly felt the desire to build an unconventional culture of Western confectionary in a city where just a stroll down the street fascinates. That was the beginning of the story of LeTAO.

Luckily, we were able to have a store at the Meruhen intersection, which is Otaru's foremost tourist center, and built a store that looks like a big tower and named it LeTAO. It is based on the first letters of the French word "La Tour Amitie Otaru" meaning "The Amiable Tower of Otaru," and arranged them with affection for the city of Otaru.

We sincerely hope to be loved by the people of Otaru, to become a symbol of Otaru, and to be widely talked about and praised.

Two themes held up upon opening

Toward the opening of a Western confectionery, we developed two themes: Nostalgic Modern and Northern Sweets Etiquette.

Nostalgic Modern means "to pursue exceptional taste in nostalgic sweets with modern ideas." It expresses our attitude toward making tasty sweets that are better than today.

Northern Sweets Etiquette means "to spread the manners of northern people, which is to enjoy sweets," but also it expresses our resolution "to become a representative of Hokkaido sweets, and hope to remind people of LeTAO when speaking of Hokkaido sweets.

The heart of LeTAO

LeTAO's founder Kawagoe built a stone monument inscribed with a poem in front of the new store when it opened. The poem is titled "A Journey called Life" written by Takahiro Tajima who is known as a wheelchair cameraman. The collection of photographs and poems titled Uta ga kikoeru are the works of a man in a wheelchair taken from 50 cm above the ground as someone who overcame disabilities through tireless efforts. Kawagoe was deeply moved by this collection, and strongly felt "the heart to thrive filled with gratitude toward life and nature," and committed himself to set this feeling as the spirit of LeTAO.

Every employee of LeTAO greatly cherish this poem.

Freezing Technology

Customer demands have made it possible to deliver nationwide

In June 1998, LeTAO opened in the city of Otaru.

Since then, we have pursued the production of delicious sweets. Among them, our main products are Double Fromage and Royal Montagne.

Double Fromage is a cheesecake that has been very popular since we opened. At first, it was just one of many cakes that we sold in the store, but it became more and more popular. Requests from customers outside Hokkaido for home delivery increased day by day, so we decided to develop technology to freeze Double Fromage.

At that time, it was commonly thought that once a cake was frozen it would spoil after thawing. We reviewed the recipe and developed a new freezing technology, and after three years, we were able to deliver frozen cheesecakes.

We were finally able to freeze Double Fromage, which was tremendously popular among our customers, and kept its great taste even after thawing.

The two-layered Double Fromage, made of baked cheesecake with a rich cheese flavor and unbaked cheesecake that is light and milky, is now delivered nationwide.

Preferences of Taste

Continuous efforts to select quality ingredients and recipe

How could our cakes be even more tasty? How could we please our customers? We keep asking ourselves such questions and review each product every day. Not only do we use high quality ingredients from Hokkaido, but we also use carefully selected ingredients from all over the world. Patissiers pursue new skills. We are always looking for a new way to show our appreciation to our customers for their continuous support.

Our standard products that remain popular are no exception. Double Fromage is a cheesecake that represents LeTAO, and we focused on its ingredients and manufacturing process of using fresh cream, wheat, and eggs from Hokkaido. "Because it is popular among customers nationwide, we hope to make it even better." As a result, our patissiers used mascarpone from the Lombardy region in North Italy by Ambrosi. The rich flavor and quality were just perfect and we decided to use it.

In order to make use of the high quality mascarpone, we repeated trials over and over, improved our skills, and enhanced the melting taste and the milky taste even more.

Creating exceptional taste

Thanks to the people of Otaru and tourists who visited Otaru, LeTAO is now 20 years old. Perhaps, our initial desire to "build an unconventional culture of western confectionary suitable in a city of Otaru" was achieved.

However, we have and will continue to pursue "tasty sweets that are better than today." We will continue to pursue exceptional tastes from nostalgic sweets with modern ideas. Every member of our staff will cherish "the heart to thrive filled with gratitude toward life and nature" more than anything, and we vow to create and give pleasure to each and every customer.

Hoping that LeTAO will continue to be the Amiable Tower of Otaru.

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