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Get Psyched for 'Raindrop Cakes,' Food Gimmick of the Summer

By Rachel Holliday Smith | April 6, 2016 6:49pm | Updated on April 8, 2016 11:13pm
 The Raindrop Cake, a water-and-agar dessert popularized in Japan, debuted at Smorgasburg on Sunday.
The Raindrop Cake, a water-and-agar dessert popularized in Japan, debuted at Smorgasburg on Sunday.
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DNAinfo/Rachel Holliday Smith

It's New York’s latest, must-have food gimmick: the Raindrop Cake.

Following its success with the Cronut, Ramen Burger and rainbow bagel, the city’s Evil Foodie Cabal has dreamed up yet another way to get people to stand in line.

This time around, it's a murky white gelatin, made mostly of water and agar (a vegan-friendly alternative to gelatin, according to the Huffington Post), and topped with roasted soybean flour and brown sugar syrup.

Popularized in Japan, the Raindrop Cake debuted in the states this weekend at the summer season opening of Smorgasburg — in Williamsburg on Saturday and Prospect Park on Sunday.

Despite its odd appearance, when we checked it out Sunday, the Raindrop Cake station had the longest line in the whole place.

In fact, there were so many people waiting at the food festival for this dessert puddle (amid gusting wind and near-freezing temperatures, mind you) that the Raindrop servers kept a handwritten list of pre-paid customers, to whom they doled out the gelatin snacks at $8 a pop.

A staff member at the Raindrop Cake station at Smorgasburg on Sunday takes orders from customers for the vegan, zero-calorie desserts. Behind her, buyers on a pre-paid list wait for their cakes. (Photo credit: DNAinfo/Rachel Holliday Smith)

Each “cake” — prepared off-site, according to creator Darren Wong — was stored individually in a plastic container filled with water, from which staff carefully removed the jelly-like things, placed them in bamboo sheaths with the flour and syrup, then served.

Buyers seemed satisfied, poking excitedly at the alleged treats with spoons before slurping them down. We didn’t try the thing ourselves, however; Ramen Burger, a few stalls down from Raindrop Cake, had a much shorter line.


I don't think you're ready for this jelly💧 📷: @tooomuchfoood

A video posted by Spoon University at NYU (@spoon_nyu) on