Thursday, May 26, 2016

Cute Shit: Weird Japanese Snacks

Now that it's been about a year, I've accumulated enough phone pics of weird snacks and drinks to make a funny post in the same vein as the weird Korean snacks one

It's going to be a big day for all of us.

The best part of waking up, is a foul-temered egg custard in your cup!
(Gudetama, as far as I can tell, has been the most popular San-X character 
for the last couple of years. This depressed, runny little dude is everywhere.)

Or an Easter chick cake with dead, beady eyes fresh off a freaky, artificial, Matrix-like assembly line. In your cuuuuup.
(There are fields, Neo. Endless fields.)

During one of my five-minute breaks when I was doing 5- and 6-hour straight Skype sessions at the office I caved and got this canned coffee (with milk) instead of my usual plain black one, because it came with an irresistibly tiny and cleverly-packaged Chun Li figurine that upside-down balances on things. #priorities

At least I didn't eat these special Takashi Murakami sweets, though, because they were freaking sold out (!), but Hannes and Patrick did partake of the latte.

... Okay, so, I checked, and speaking of lattes, the best part of waking up is actually, apparently, squeezing room-temperature flower-headed cow cream into your cup? (TM)

That awkward moment when you're the only developed nation that never bothered to learn any English and mocking yourself becomes a marketing tactic for fruit juice because you're also a bunch of masochists :x

Another example of something I shouldn't have.. but I'd been craving it, and they're so small, and I only drank one! I wanted to be a basic bitch just like everyone else! ToT

But, okay, I had a couple of these ones for no good reason, too, even though a lot of "cherry blossom-flavoured" things are actually just strawberry. And that next to it there is a pickled plum rice ball coated in shredded kelp that has the same texture as fur! 
Weird, but very tasty.

Mom, I can't find my name! 
They're out of Pop Jack and Pop Jeff and Pop-everything except stupid Pop Zack.

Picked these up for other people, admittedly largely because I wanted to take a pic of the potential LGBTQ-friendliness of this romantic packaging design. This drink is completely ridiculous though, tastes like liquid yogurt candy, not "tea" at all.

Hey look, speaking of candy, I came up with a great way to get little kids to eat makeup and lotion! -_- Seriously though, can we talk about why so many candies and drinks have collagen in them? That's gross.

Bread Sand! Mmmmm!
In Korea, too, this was a thing ("Organic Sand Cookies"!). Never gets old.

A lot of people are aware of the weird and unique Doritos and Kit Kat flavours Japan comes up with, but actually, I don't usually see bizarre chips of any kind, except for the occasional Pringles that I'm always keeping an eye out for.

Sweet Cinnamon!

Eggs Benedict (The Taste of a New York breakfast!), extremely what-the-fucky.

Brazilian Lime & Chili, with the chip as a scantily-clad Carnival dancer! I've also seen Pizza Toast. Oh, and that little grapefruit basil juice box there was definitely my favourite springtime novelty drink, very tasty.

Corn chip-type things I grabbed on a whim because they were adorably packaged and less than a dollar. The pink one is Creamed Corn Soup flavour, and the blue one, which I didn't notice at all until I got home, is literally Choco Banana Pizza flavour. 
Seriously Kiki, what the fuck. 
You are not allowed to make dinner anymore when you're fucking high.

Easter Krispy Kremes for Hannes! I stopped in after work at like 8 PM, so they were unfortunately out of bunnies.

Mmm, tiny whole crispy shrimp that stare back at you blankly!

... straight into your soul :D

Squid on a drying rack on Jogashima. I have a hairclip shaped like one of these bad boys.

Traditional Cat Face Pizza

Highly region-specific ginger beer

Highly flavour-specific pine soda that was not nearly piney enough. Left me pining for pine, okay, there, did the pun. I was disappoint in it, and myself.

And of course, traditional cheap crappy Mexican soda straight out of 1998 to go along with my Angel marathon, which was of almost exactly the same time period, quality, and locale!

On the topic of American things, feast your eyes (but not for too long, save some for the rest of us) on this $18 veggie pizza Hannes ordered last summer.

EIGHTEEN DOLLARS. The slices were smaller than my phone.



McChoco Potato! Yes, that's right, for a brief but glorious 20-ish-day window, we were able to partake of McDonald's French fries with chocolate sauce. 

And look! Calbee (snack food company, potato sticks and the like) has a number of small shops where you can order chocolate-drizzled, freshly-made and way-over-salted potato chips year round! That dusting of crushed almond you see on there was a special limited option, though.

You never called it after that fourth date, which we thought went really well by the way

Chestnut-shaped biscuits that are mostly made of egg and taste of egg and are the consistency of ceramic tiles of the same thickness. 10/10 do not recommend

Tomato jelly, I guess, is a thing. I've seen it more than once. It was very puke-worthy, unlike the tomato water that I hope comes back this summer. Also 10/10 do not recommend.

I don't have a pic of the tomato water, which also doesn't have an interesting label or anything, but I DO have a pic of this weirdly-refreshing, Green Shower (ahem) 
sparkling hops water!

Owl cake! I only felt audacious enough to take a picture of one of them after staring awkwardly. For a while there the Tokyu Hands in Ikebukuro had a mini owl cafe on the first floor. The last time I went by I saw a poster of adorable cat cakes, so I think it's probably a mini cat cafe now.

Baskin Robbins here, like in Korea, does some pretty cute shit. 
No idea why they would call this "Pop Scoop Sundae" instead of, like, 
"Sweet Sleepy Easter Chick Delight" or basically anything else, though. Typical.

Creme brulee tea cat will see you in your nightmares tonight, asshole. 

This less-common variety of "blue daifuku" (I know, it's more green than blue, this is an ongoing nonsensical cultural thing, just move on) has not only sweet bean paste but also a large grape or muskat fruit, I think it was? in the center.

And these surprised-looking ones are koinobori, or carp windsocks, for Childrens' Day!

Another type of pickled plum rice ball, also with a traditional convenience store dessert that was stupidly tasty.

Another traditional thing that's stupidly tasty is this stuff, a special type of soft, chewy, walnut rice cake. I couldn't get enough of it last year. Mostly because a couple of cute little stalls near the horribly shitty places I worked sold it and I needed something to look forward to at the end of the day, but it's at the top of my traditional sweets list nonetheless.


I felt a bit bad for very quickly and absentmindedly snapping a picture of this vendor in Little Edo when a gap in the surging crowd appeared once I saw his expression, but I mean, that's probably how I'd feel too if I were selling those fish pops.

Speaking of vendors, I love the way these sesame rice cakes were "grilled", on display at the top of Mt. Takao like prehistoric bird eggs in an enormous Flintstones nest.

Hannes was like, "And what's this. Just like. A cucumber. A whole fucking cucumber."
Me: "And there's miso paste. You put miso paste on it."
Hannes: "Wow, my fucking favourite."
(these snacks were delicious by the way lol)

Moving on to the alcohol portion of our program, this is probably my favourite pre-mixed cocktail you can buy by the bottle or can. It's also only a dollar.

I like to have it with my apple ginger gummies and myyyyy grilled apple slice-flavoured Gudetama Halloween rice crackers at Christmastime? Wtf.

Nothing says "classy" like fake Japanese sangria in a can, amirite?

And finally, the last stop on our tour is this, a wee bottle of festive white sake (fermented using a special plant enzyme and decidedly funny-tasting) that I bought for 16 cents because it was for ひな祭り, and that holiday had passed. 16 cents, guys. 
Fucking Japan, really.