These Hello Kitty Kintsuba Japanese Confections are the Perfect Souvenir From Japan
05.November.2019 | FOOD
Confectionery company Nakataya has teamed up with Sanrio to release the Hello Kitty Kintsuba.
Kintsuba is a type of traditional Japanese confection of sweet beans wrapped in wheat-flour dough. Nakataya is famous for their kintsuba, which are made with large-grained beans and red bean paste. They have maintained the flavour and quality of these confections, each of which is made with the utmost precision, and all individually.
This year marks the 85th anniversary since Nakataya opened. The long-standing store hopes to bring in more foreign and younger customers by collaborating with Hello Kitty.
They have crafted several flavours. Pictured above is the apple pie flavour, Hello Kitty’s favourite. It’s made with fuji apples from Aomori Prefecture which is known for its incredible apples. It’s mixed with white bean paste and is lightly flavoured with cinnamon.
The mixed berry flavour is a fruity sweet and sour mix of strawberries, raspberries and blueberries which have been mashed together with white bean paste.
The confection comes in two kinds of packaging: one designed by Nakataya’s founder Nakata (中田憲龍), and a Hello Kitty version where she is dressed as a dragonーa symbol of the shop. This is a completely original Hello Kitty design made specially for the collaboration.
The outer packaging is made with a wrapping cloth to both pass down an aspect of traditional Japanese culture while also catering to the eco-friendly lifestyle of the modern age. It’s made from amuzen fabric and can be reused. The inner packaging is a simple paper tray so can be recycled. And if you take the wrapping cloth back to the store, they can refill it with the three Hello Kitty kintsuba confections at a discounted price.
Hello Kitty Kintsuba
Released: November 1, 2019
Contains: One box of 6 (x3 mixed berry/x3 apple pie)
Price: Hello Kitty Kintsuba – ¥2,500 (Before Tax) *Comes with wrapping cloth
Hello Kitty Kintsuba Refill – ¥1,800 (Before Tax)
*The refill is only available to those with a wrapping cloth
Available: At participating Nakataya branches and the online shop
Official Website: www.kintuba.co.jp
McDonald’s Japan to Release Custard Pudding Flavoured McShake
08.April.2020 | FOOD
McDonald’s Japan is teaming up with Ezaki Glico to bring Glico’s popular “Pucchi Purin” custard pudding dessert to McDonald’s McShake®. The “Pucchin Purin McShake” will be released at all McDonald’s branches around Japan for a limited time starting on April 13, 2020.
The collaboration comes at the right time as Glico has revamped its popular Pucchi Purin dessert.
The new Pucchin Purin McShake incorporates everything that’s delicious about McShake, including its creamy texture and subtly sweet taste, and combines it with the milky Pucchi Purin pudding with all its caramel goodness, creating a drinkable dessert.
It also comes with some additional caramel sauce (available while supplies last) which only adds to the tempting sweetness of the drink. Add as much or as little as you like.
Pucchin Purin McShake is available in a small only, with cups featuring an original design. This is a must-try for fans of McShake and Japanese custard puddings, known as purin.
Pucchin Purin McShake®
Release Date: April 13, 2020
Official Website: http://www.mcdonalds.co.jp/
Mister Donut Japan to Launch New Matcha Doughnut Series
07.April.2020 | FOOD
Mister Donut Japan is set to release a new limited line of matcha doughnuts in collaboration with Gion Tsujiri and Toshi Yoroizuka at all branches in Japan from April 10, 2020.
Following the success of Mister Donut’s previous collaborations with the two companies, named “misdo meets Gion Tsujiri” and “misdo meets Toshi Yoroizuka” respectively, this new collaboration sees all three companies come together for the first time to co-develop the matcha doughnuts. The triple team’s matcha creations are the fitting way to celebrate Mister Donut’s 50th anniversary as Gion Tsujiri brings the best Uji matcha from Kyoto and Uji-born pastry chef Toshihiko Yoroizuka brings his skill set.
Pon de Ring Uji Matcha Chocolate Almond
The classic chewy Pon de Ring laced with Uji matcha and coated in chocolate. It’s finished with a sprinkling of Uji matcha powder and crunchy almonds.
Pon de Ring Uji Matcha Milk Crunch
The matcha-ness is turned up with this Pon de Ring, which is not only mixed with Uji matcha, but coated with Uji matcha chocolate. It’s served with a snowfall of milk crunch pieces., highlighting the velvety texture of the doughnut while adding crunch.
Pon de Ring Uji Matcha & Chocolate Cream
This doughnut is made into a sandwich, with Uji matcha whipped cream and chocolate cream. The Uji matcha chocolate adds a richness to the overall flavour.
Pon de Ring Uji Matcha Doughnuts
Running: April 10, 2020 – Early June 2020
Available: At most Mister Donut branches in Japan
Tiramisu Chocolate Whip
The dough of these tiramisu doughnuts are combined with cocoa. This one is filled with chocolate whipped cream, a tiramisu, and milk crunch pieces for an amalgamation of tasty flavours and textures.
Tiramisu Uji Matcha Whip
The chocolate whipped cream of the previous doughnut is replaced with Uji matcha whipped cream for this luxurious delight. The cream is also embedded with almonds.
Uji Matcha Chocolate Pie
The name speaks for itself: a lovely layered pie of Uji matcha chocolate and chocolate cream.
Tiramisu Doughnuts & Chocolate Pie
Running: April 10, 2020 – Early May 2020
Available: At most Mister Donut branches in Japan
These Breathtaking Doughnuts Will Turn Your Home Into an Authentic Cafe Experience
05.April.2020 | FOOD
With most of us cooped up indoors, that desire to go and relax in a cafe with some coffee and cake just keeps on growing. “gmgm,” a doughnut shop in Koenji, Tokyo that specialises in “flower doughnuts,” is very aware of this, and so they opened an online shop on Saturday to allow for people to enjoy that authentic cafe experience from their own home.
gmgm, the flower doughnut shop
Nana Yui, an artist of dried flower art, opened gmgm in June 2019 as the sister store to HANABAR, a bar in Ikebukuro, Tokyo where drinks are served topped with beautiful dried flower art. At gmgm, the beautiful flower art combines harmoniously with the antique furniture and decor. It’s a popular doughnut shop whose doughnuts are beautiful enough to be given as gifts.
Earl Grey x Rose: ¥500
Cream Cheese Strawberry x Safflower: ¥500
The doughnuts gmgm is offering to ship out on their website include their five regular doughnut flavours and some limited-time flavours, all of which are nothing short of cute works of art.
Customers who order on the shop by April 30 will also receive a free dried flower and a tea turns blue. Those who order more than 8 will receive that plus a pressed viola flower you can eat.
You can also make ice cubes with flowers in them and set your table like in the cafe’s photos for a really luxurious tea time!
Address: 3-60-10 Koenjiminami, Suginami, Tokyo
Opening Hours: [Weekdays] 14:00-20:00 / [Weekends & Public Holidays] 12:00-20:00
Official Website: https://www.gmgm.info
Grab These Adorable and Delicious-Looking Kirby Figures at Japan’s Game Centres
29.March.2020 | ANIME&GAME
The second batch in a series of Kirby figurines, based on the Kirby’s Dream Land game series, began rolling out at game centres across Japan on March 26, 2020. They are part of the “Palcolce collection,” a line of palm-sized figures themed around desserts.
Three figures make up the second batch of the series, which includes Kirby standing atop a Star Block shortcake holding a bright-red strawberry, another of Waddle Dee climbing a cupcake on chocolate ladder, and Kirby flying through the sky on a cheesecake Warp Star.
A third batch is also planned drop in the near future.
Collect all three from arcades throughout Japan to create a truly kawaii Kirby scene!
©Nintendo / HAL Laboratory, Inc. KB19-3661
Kirby – Paldolce collection vol.2
Release Date: Rolling out March 26, 2020
Available: Amusement centres throughout Japan (*select branches not participating)
Official Website: https://bpnavi.jp/s/toru/pc/prizes/81933
McDonald’s Japan Releases Citron and Pistachio Flavoured Macarons at McCafé by Barista Branches
26.March.2020 | FOOD
McCafé by Barista branches of McDonald’s in Japan released two new flavours in their macaron series on Wednesdayーpistachio and citronーwhich will be served for a limited time until the end of August this year.
The pistachio and citron flavours join McCafé by Barista’s colourful macaron series alongside vanilla, raspberry, and chocolate, which cost just ¥150 each.
The pistachio flavour is filled with a pistachio powder-dusted pistachio cream, giving the crunchy macaron a deliciously nutty flavour and fragrance.
The citron macaron is filled with a refreshing and sour lemon cream. Both of the new flavours are the perfect treat for the start of spring and going into the summer season. They’re even better with one of McCafé by Barista’s high quality coffees.
McCafé by Barista is also serving the “Special Macaron Set” for ¥500 which comes with any two macarons of your choice and a medium hot or iced latte.
Macaron Pistachio / Macaron Citron
Serving: March 25, 2020 – Late August 2020 (subject to change)
Available: McCafé by Barista in Japan
McDonald’s Japan Official Website: http://www.mcdonalds.co.jp/
HELLO KITTY SHOW BOX, Nijigen no Mori, & Other Exciting Things to Experience on Japan’s Awaji Island
Pasona Group is a website that publishes news of and promotes the food, sights, and culture of Awaji Island to build a connection between islanders and travellers. The website has published its latest “Awaji Island New Report” showcasing what to enjoy on the island at the turn of spring. Let’s take a look.
Nijigen no Mori
Night Walk Hi no Tori – “SAKURA Night”
Nijigen no Mori is an anime on Awaji Island. Spring last year saw the Naruto & Boruto Shinobi-Zato attraction, and this summer will see the arrival of a life-sized Godzilla attraction. The new night attraction “Night Walk Hi no Tori” will also take place for a limited time as part of the “SAKURA Night” Instagram photo event which can be followed with the hashtag #nwsakura2020. The phoenix and cherry blossoms are the theme of this nighttime attraction. Those who post a photo of themselves at the event with the hashtag and receive the most likes will receive two tickets to stay at Hotel GRAND CHARIOT Hokutoshichisei 135° on Awaji Island. See the attraction and get pulled into a magical nightly world of cherry blossoms.
Address: 2425-2 Kusumoto, Awaji, Hyogo
Running: March 20, 2020 – April 30, 2020
Price: General – ¥2,500 / Children (5-11 Years Old) – ¥1,200 / Below 4 Years Old – Free (*Tax included in prices)
Times: 18:30 / 19:10 / 19:50 / 20:30
*Times subject to change depending on the time of sunsets – check the official website for information
Official Website: https://nijigennomori.com/
Cherry Blossom Waffles – ¥1,800 (Before Tax)
Starting on April 1, the cafe Miele is serving up cherry blossom waffles for the spring season. They are topped with heart shaped marshmallows arranged to create cherry blossom petals, matcha ice cream daifuku, and cherry blossom flavoured roll cake. The hearty waffle servings are fluffy on the inside and crunchy on the outside, topped with delicious squirty cream.
Address: 785-9 Nojimahikinoura, Awaji, Hyogo
Running: April 1, 2020 – May 31, 2020
Opening Hours: 10:30-19:00
HELLO KITTY SHOW BOX
World Oldies Selection ~1964 TOKYO~
The official Hello Kitty theatre and restaurant HELLO KITTY SHOW BOX on Awaji Island is currently holding a new event titled World Oldies Selection ~1964 TOKYO~ where Hello Kitty and performers sing and dance to famous nostalgic songs that played during the Tokyo Olympics in 1964, like Poupée de cire, poupée de son, Land of 1,000 Dancers, and YMCA. It’s a beautiful performance that both kids and adults alike can enjoy.
©1976, 2020 SANRIO CO., LTD. APPROVAL NO. G604668
Running: April 7, 2020
Opening Hours: 11,00-20:00 (Up to 3 performances per day)
Address: HELLO KITTY SHOW BOX, 177-5 Nojimahirabayashi, Awaji, Hyogo Prefecture
Puppy Island Pizza – ¥480 (Before Tax)
Craft Circus reopened after renovations on February 15. The new “Wan-chan Shima Pizza” (Puppy Island Pizza) can be eaten by both you and your dog. It is made from rice flour produced on Awaji Island. You can pick from a variety of toppings and seafood, all of which are also from Awaji Island. It’s gluten free and can be served with low-salt mascarpone cheese, making it healthy for your dog to eat. A single slice is 15cm and it comes in a cute dog bone shape. It can also be ordered for takeout, so you can enjoy a Hanami picnic with your dog under the cherry blossom trees!
Address: 2-2 NojimahirabayashiAwaji, Hyogo
Opening Hours: 10:30-20:30 (Last Orders 18:30)
*Opening hours change depending on the season
Succulent Strawberry Drinks & Desserts Served Up at GELATO PIQUE CAFE
21.March.2020 | FOOD
GELATO PIQUE CAFE branches in Japan began their “Strawberry Fair” on Wednesday serving up drinks and desserts made using seasonal strawberries.
What is GELATO PIQUE CAFE all about?
“Desserts for adults” is the concept at GELATO PIQUE CAFE, a cafe brand developed by GELATO PIQUE which specialises is comfy loungewear. The cafe, which has branches in Tokyo, Osaka, Nagoya, and elsewhere in Japan, serves comfort food and is interested in the health and happiness of its guests. Their menu is overflowing with ideas, with all options made using only the best selected ingredients.
The enticing line-up is nothing short of kawaii, and screams springtimeーfitting for the season as Japan celebrated Vernal Equinox Day yesterday, the first day of springーwith sweet and sour strawberries adorning their crepes, smoothies, gelatos, soft serve ice creams, and more.
Strawberry Mille Feuille Crepe – ¥830 (Before Tax)
Topped with a whole strawberry, this mille feuille-inspired seasonal crepe is made with an in-house crafted strawberry cream, mille feuille puff pastry, and vanilla gelato. The strawberries used are a mix, all grown in Kumamoto Prefecture, including yuubeni, koinozomi, koiminori, and others. Much love and care is put into growing strawberries in Kumamoto, making them sweet and delicious.
White Strawberry & Red Strawberry Gelato – ¥460 (Before Tax)
This two-coloured serving of gelato ice cream is made with sweet-smelling white strawberries and a brand of red strawberry from Fukuoka called amaou. No strawberry lover will be able to resist this pick.
Strawberry Smoothie – ¥590 (Before Tax)
Enjoy a cold strawberry smoothie made from seasonal strawbs, milk, and honey. Indulge in the refreshing sweetness of the strawberries, and enjoy the cute pink flavour of the beverage.
Strawberry Milk Soft Serve Ice Cream – ¥450 (Before Tax)
Or grab yourself a cone of soft serve ice cream to enjoy the combination of flavours: sweet and sour strawbs and sweet, creamy milk.You can also get a mix together with the light blue vanilla flavour.
Running: March 18, 2020 – May 31, 2020
Location: GELATO PIQUE CAFE (Participating Branches: atré EBISU, LUMINE Ikebukuro, Mitsui Outlet Park Makuhari, Mitsui Outlet Park Kisarazu, Mitsui Outlet Park Jazz Dream Nagashima, Gotemba Premium Outlets, Nagoya LACHIC, Mozo Wonder City, Namba Marui, Mitsui Outlet Park Hokuriku Oyabe)
Official Website: https://pique-cafe.com/
*Strawberry variety is subject to change depending on production conditions
Shirasagi Coffee: Ehime Prefecture’s Cafe Releases Springtime Cherry Blossom Menu
21.March.2020 | FOOD
Shirasagi Coffee, a cafe in Ehime Prefecture, has released a new seasonal menu full of strawberries and cherry blossoms to commemorate the spring season.
Shirasagi Coffee’s logo features a heron, a reference to a legend that says the locals of Matsuyama in Ehime noticed that a white heron healed its injured leg by bathing in the hot springs of Dōgo Onsen, one of the oldest hot springs in Japan. The cafe was renovated using furniture made from scrap wood from when Dōgo Onsen was built. It’s an artistic cafe that has garnered much attention from both locals and tourists.
Thick-Cut Natural Yeast Toast
This thick-sliced bread is provided by Panya Uzu, a bread shop also in Matsuyama, Ehime. Perfect for breakfast or lunch, it’s topped with a cherry blossom jam and mascarpone cheese cream.
Top: Cream Soda / Right: Cherry Blossom Tea Latte / Left: Cherry Blossom & Strawberry Mint Sour
This line-up of three drinks are made using seasonal strawberries grown in Ehime Prefecture.
Bavarois is a classic dessert at Shirasagi Coffee, and this one is made using matcha grown in the village of Shingu in Ehime and is coated in a cherry blossom cream.
Spring Madonna Parfait
This limited-time parfait is stacked with 12 different ingredients of varying textures and flavours, including cherry blossom, as well as Ehime strawberries, chestnuts, and matcha. It’s the culmination of Ehime’s springtime ingredients.
The cafe also serves mini parfaits, drinks and other items for takeout. Pick something out and go and observe the cherry blossoms for Hanami at Dōgo Park.
Address: 2F, 12-1 Dōgoyunomachi, Matsuyama, Ehime Prefecture
Opening Hours: 08:00-18:00 (from 07:00 on weekends and public holidays)
No Fixed Holidays
Closest Station: Dogo Station via Iyotetsu
Official Website: https://shirasagicoffee.com/
*Open everyday until 22:30 from March 23, 2020
*Table reservations available on weekdays
*Breakfast-only until 11:00
Tea & Chocolate Brownie Released by Dandelion Chocolate and IYEMON SALON ATELIER
18.March.2020 | FOOD
Dandelion Chocolate and IYEMON SALON ATELIER have joined sticky fingers to bake up their new “Tea & Cocoa Brownie” which is now being served at IYEMON SALON ATELIER KYOTO and Dandelion Chocolate Kyoto Higashiyama Ichinenzaka.
This collaboration came about to celebrate 1 year since IYEMON SALON ATELIER KYOTO opened. The chocolates fuse IYEMON SALON’s tea with Dandelion Chocolate’s organic, single origin bean to bar chocolate.
Tea & Cocoa Brownie (Uji Matcha/Houjicha) – ¥1,800 (Before Tax) *Contains 2 of each flavour
The two different flavoured brownies, Uji matcha and houjicha, are filled with a ganache made from Japanese tea and carefully selected chocolate from the Dominican Republic. The chocolate has a strong, rich flavour like that of coffee and cherries, but is still easy to get without it tasting overwhelming. The brownies are also vegan-friendly and gluten-free, containing no eggs, dairy products, wheat, or white sugar. They are the perfect accompaniment to both tea and a mild-tasting sake.
The vegan lifestyle is slowly gaining recognition in Japan, so don’t miss this chance to treat yourself to some melt-in-the-mouth vegan delights.
©Dandelion Chocolate Japan
IYEMON SALON ATELIER KYOTO
Address: 481-1 Kiyoichō, Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto
Opening Hours: 8:00-23:00 (Course Last Orders 21:00 / Grand Menu & Drinks Last Orders 22:00)
Official Website: https://www.cafecompany.co.jp/brands/iyemonsalon/atelier-kyoto/
Dandelion Chocolate Kyoto Higashiyama Ichinenzaka
Address: 363-6 Masuyachō, Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto
Opening Hours: 10:00-19:00 (Last Orders 18:30)
Official Website: https://dandelionchocolate.jp/pages/shop-kyoto
Vegan Almond Caramel Sponge Cake Now Available at TOKYO BANANA in Tokyo Station
18.March.2020 | FOOD
TOKYO BANANA WORLD released a new vegan-friendly almond caramel flavour of its popular Tokyo Banana sponge cakeーthe official souvenir sweet of Tokyoーat the TOKYO BANANA store on the JR side of Tokyo Station on March 15, 2020.
This is TOKYO BANANA’s first vegan-friendly sweet. It’s made from 100% plant-based ingredients while keeping 100% of the product’s delicious flavour. That includes almond milk, which is promoted for its health and beauty benefits, and delicious caramel.
TOKYO BANANA Almond Caramel Sandwiches – Box of 4: ¥680 (Tax Included) / Box of 8: ¥1,200 (Tax Included)
Other ingredients include beat sugar, which is made from beetroot, a subtle banana flavour, and crunchy roasted almonds, all wrapped together in a bite-size sponge cake.
The product is both vegan and vegetarian friendly, containing no eggs or dairy products.
This tasty snack is available only at TOKYO BANANA in Tokyo Station, so be sure to pop buy and pick some up if you’re travelling through there.
Tokyo Banana Almond Caramel Sand
Released: March 15, 2020
Available: TOKYO BANANA (JR Tokyo Station)
Official Website: https://www.tokyobanana.jp/
Tokyo’s Pokémon Cafe Reveals Cherry Blossom Aloha Pikachu Cake & Latte
The Pokémon Cafe in Nihonbashi Tokyo is bringing two new “Sakura Aloha Pikachu” items to its menu this spring for a limited time. They will be served between March 14 and April 19.
The Pokémon Cafe previously served up a cherry blossom Aloha Pikachu-inspired dessert and latte last year too to celebrate one year since the cafe opened. This year, they’ve changed their designs.
Sakura Aloha Pikachu Fruit Sandwich Cake – ¥1,738 (Tax Included)
Sakura Aloha Pikachu Latte 2020 – ¥770 (Tax Included)
The fruit sandwich is filled with flurry strawberry cream and fruits, while the latte features cute latte art of Aloha Pikachu who has a fluffy cherry blossom afro.
Don’t miss these seasonal picks at Tokyo’s Pokémon Cafe this year.
© 2020 Pokémon.©1995-2020 Nintendo/Creatures Inc./GAME FREAK inc.
Pokémon, ポケットモンスター, and ポケモン are trademarks of Nintendo, Creatures Inc., and GAME FREAK inc.
Pokémon Cafe (Nihonbashi, Tokyo)
Address: Nihonbashi Takashimaya SC East Bldg. 5F, Nihonbashi, Chuo Ward, Tokyo
Opening Hours: 10:30-22:00
Closed: When Nihonbashi Takashimaya SC East Bldg. is closed
*Reservations can be made online only
Matcha Sweets & Mini Tea Ceremony Experience Coming to The Strings Omotesando in Tokyo
04.March.2020 | FOOD
Cafe & Dining ZelkovA is set to offer a new “Japanese Tea Set” service from March 3 to July 2 this year which gives customers a mini tea ceremony experience where they can enjoy a cup of matcha and tuck into some matcha sweets.
Japanese Tea Set – ¥2,600 (Tax Included) *Plus separate 12% service charge
This tea set comes with genuine a nanbu tekki cast iron kettle for pouring hot water and a chasen tea whisk for mixing the matcha powder. Authentic Uji matcha from Kyoto is used which has a wonderfully rich fragrance that reminds you just how good matcha really is.
The tea set also comes with an Uji matcha tiramisu and a rice flour dumpling anmitsu which comes with an assortment of fruits like the setoka citrus and melon, Tokachi adzuki beans, and brown sugar syrup from Okinawa.
Sit either on the sunny terrace or inside with the cafe’s high-end interior design and enjoy yourself luxuriously with a cup of matcha and some Japanese matcha treats.
Cafe & Dining ZelkovA
Address: The Strings Omotesando (Floor 1F), 3-6-8 Kitaaoyama, Minato Ward, Tokyo
Serving: March 3, 2020 – July 2, 2020
Opening Hours: [Weekdays] 11:30-22:00 / [Weekends & Holidays] 11:00-22:00