Pokémon, My Melody, Moomin and More Valentine’s Day Chocolates Arrive at Daimaru Tokyo
31.January.2021 | FOOD
The Hoppe Town area of Daimaru Tokyo is currently celebrating Valentine’s Day up to February 14 with the release of a selection of gift chocolates by six brands in collaboration with popular characters.
Pokémon Chocolate Set (Large Box) | ¥1,404 (Tax Included)
My Melody x Goncharoff Chocolates (Contains 21) | ¥2,160 (Tax Included)
Moomin x Merry Chocolate’s Hattifatteners Chocolates (Contains 11) | ¥1,188 (Tax Included)
Dick Bruna by Morozoff: Picture Book Chocolates (Contains 15) – ¥864 (Tax Included) / Miffy Pouch Chocolates (Contains 8) – ¥1,320 (Tax Included)
Chatrois Kitten Tiny Plain Chocolates | ¥783 (Tax Included)
Katanukiya Angel Panda | ¥684 (Tax Included)
Which of these cute and tasty-looking treats has caught your eye the most?
©Nintendo･Creatures･GAME FREAK･TV Tokyo･ShoPro･JR Kikaku ©Pokémon
©１９７６，２０２１ ＳＡＮＲＩＯ ＣＯ，ＬＴＤ．ＡＰＰＲＯＶＡＬ ＮＯ．Ｌ６１３３７４
Daimaru Tokyo Valentine’s Sweets
Running: January 27, 2021 – February 14, 2021
Location: Hoppe Town on Floor 1F of Daimaru Tokyo
Official Website: https://www.daimaru.co.jp/
Alice in Wonderland Themed Afternoon Tea Says ‘Eat Me’ in Tokyo
Shirokane ArtGrace Club and Tokyo Aphrodite are now serving a luxurious Alice in Wonderland themed afternoon tea experience until June.
Fans of Alice will instantly recognise plenty of references garnishing all the plates from the ‘Eat Me’ strawberry parfaits to the White Rabbit’s ears popping out of the raspberry mousse, Cheshire Cat-inspired macarons, Queen of Hearts sandwiches, and more.
Alice in Wonderland Afternoon Tea
Serving: March 2021 – June 2021
Shirokane ArtGrace Club
Table Reservations/Details: https://www.bestbridal.co.jp/guestparty/tokyo/shinagawa_meguro/artgrace_shirogane/2021event-23/
Table Reservations/Details: https://www.bestbridal.co.jp/guestparty/tokyo/in-tokyo/afrodite_nihonbashi/2021event-24/
Mirmo de Pon! Manga Series Celebrates 20th Anniversary at Ikebukuro P’PARCO
08.March.2021 | ANIME&GAME
The Chara Shop is commemorating the 20th anniversary of the fantasy and romantic comedy manga series Mirmo de Pon! with a special themed shop at P’PARCO from March 13 to 30.
Mirmo de Pon! was serialised in Ciao magazine from July 2001 to December 2005.
The Merchandise Line-Up
Pin Set | ¥1,600 (Before Tax)
Mini Acrylic Art | ¥2,000 (Before Tax)
The Chara Shop Original Chibi Art
Key Rings | ¥600 Each (Before Tax)
Acrylic Stands | ¥2,000 Each (Before Tax)
Manga Artwork Merchandise
Square Pins | ¥500 Each (Before Tax)
Acrylic Stands | ¥1,000 Each (Before Tax)
Mini Acrylic Stands | ¥600 Each (Before Tax)
Cushion | ¥3,500 (Before Tax)
For every ¥2,000 with tax spent, fans will receive a free card featuring artwork of the manga characters.
Mirmo de Pon! x The Chara Shop
Running: March 13, 2021 – March 30, 2021
Where: Ikebukuro P’PARCO Floor 3F, 1-50-35 Higashi-Ikebukuro, Toshima-ku, Tokyo
Opening Hours: 11:00-20:00 (Until 18:00 on March 30)
Online Order Window: Mach 13, 2021 – April 5, 2021
Collab Details: https://www.the-chara.com/blog/?p=20641
The Ultimate Chocolate and Confectionery Indulgence is Here With LIFE IS PÂTISSIER’s White Day Gifts
Japanese chocolate and baked goods bakery LIFE IS PÂTISSIER is now selling a collection of luxurious treats for White Day, the sequel to Valentine’s Day in Japan, via their online store until March 14.
LIFE IS PÂTISSIER is a takeout chocolate bakery that specialises in chocolate and baked confections. Some of their signature items include their pound cake and chocolate bonbons. They also serve sable biscuits, madeleines, and much more. They are based in Jiyugaoka, a neighbourhood in Meguro, Tokyo, where they enjoy plenty of customers both local and tourists. Due to the pandemic, they are currently operating entirely online.
LIFE IS PÂTISSIER White Day Gifts 2021
Leaf Caramel | ¥1,800 (Before Tax)
Crunchy chocolate caramel bites drizzled in even more sweet, melty caramel.
Macarons | ¥2,300 (Before Tax)
A rainbow-coloured collection of raspberry, pistachio, caramel, lemon, and chocolate macarons.
Madeleines (Contains 6) | ¥2,800 (Before Tax)
Refreshing madeleines made with a mix of Japanese and Italian lemons. Refrigerating them gives the outer icing a delicious crunchy texture.
Strawberry Milk Crunch | ¥900
Smashed cookies and caramel combined with strawberry chocolate and milk chocolate.
Special Box | ¥4,500 (Before Tax)
A very special collection of raspberry chocolate treats coated in dark chocolate.
Flower Swag | ¥3,200
A fragrant flower swag composed of an assortment of fresh flowers. Perfect for decorating walls and doors and overtime become dried flowers.
White Day Cards
LIFE IS PÂTISSIER is also offering White Day cards which people can couple with their gifts.
LIFE IS PÂTISSIER White Day Gifts
Release Date: March 14, 2021
LIFE IS PÂTISSIER Official Website: https://www.life-is-patissier.com/
Japanese Puré Gummy Candy Releases Promo Videos With Original Song Featuring Asaginyo
06.March.2021 | FOOD
To promote the release of 20 new colourful packages of the popular Japanese gummy candy series Puré, Japanese sweets company Kanro released 20 videos on Tuesday (March 2) featuring popular YouTuber Asaginyo.
Asaginyo dresses up for a kaleidoscope of colourful Puré promos
The videos play to the tune of the famous Japanese 80’s track Koi no Jumon wa Suki Tokimeki to Kiss with original lyrics written for Puré. On mic is Asaginyo, a YouTuber and video and music producer. The videos, which were directed by another popular YouTuber by the name of Bunkei, can be watched over on Puré’s brand website.
And if you too want to learn the Tokimeki Puré Dance, head on over to Asaginyo’s TikTok page.
Suki Tokimeki to Puré – 2o Videos
Release Date: March 2, 2021
Official Website: https://www.kanro.jp/pure/tokimeki/
Meiji Chocolate Announces the Results of its 2020 National Confectionery Elections
06.March.2021 | FOOD
In 2018 and 2019, Japanese snack and confectionery brand Meiji held its own National Elections for its long-selling chocolate brands Kinoko no Yama and Takenoko no Sato. In 2019, Jun Matsumoto and Akihiro Miwa represented each of these chocolate snacks respectively by helming the Kinoko Party and Takenoko Party. People across Japan would listen to each side’s case and vote for which party, and therefore which chocolate, they liked the most.
The 2020 elections however took a different approach, instead spreading a message of love across Japan rather than a heated debate on which snack is better. The votes opened on September 15 last year and ran for four months where data was collected for each of Japan’s 47 prefectures to see where each snack was more popular in each part of the country.
The 2018 and 2019 elections saw an accumulative total of 26,518,982 votes submitted. People passionately made their cases for which snack they liked the most. For 2020, Meiji wanted to bring people together and cheer them up by holding a survey that was catered most towards understanding people’s love for their snacks.
Chiba hails as the place in Japan where Kinoko and Takenoko are most popular
46 of Japan’s prefectures saw more love poured for Takenoko in 2020. The remaining prefecture, Fukuoka, saw more love given to Kinoko.
The 2020 elections saw participation by 300,161 more people than previous years.
Illustrations drawn of Team Kinoko and Team Takenoko supporters
The survey ranked each prefecture by popularity, and special illustrations were drawn for four prefectures each where Kinoko and Takenoko were the most popular.
Meiji published the data breakdown which can be downloaded for free.
It contains a wealth of information related to what people voted for.
Have you tried either of these popular snacks? If you travel to Japan, be sure to pick them up at any convenience store near you.
Kinoko no Yama & Takenoko no Sato 2020 National Election Results
Dean & DeLuca Releases Strawberry Desserts and Drinks For Spring 2021
05.March.2021 | FOOD
The fresh juice season is back for spring at Dean & DeLuca cafes in Japan this year where they have a very special selection of drinks and desserts lined up for customers as well as an exclusive tumbler.
Creamy Italian maritozzi
Indulge in a tempting maritozzi this spring season which has a fluffy brioche bun stuffed loaded with fresh cream stuffed with sweet strawberries. This famous Italian delicacy is usually enjoyed in the morning but the addition of milky cream and tangy strawberries makes it a perfect dessert.
Every bite treats the taste buds to a combination of buttery brioche, melt-in-the-mouth cream, and a choice of either fresh cream and strawberries or fromage blanc and sweet and sour apricot jam.
Left: Maritozzi Strawberry ¥410 / Right: Maritozzi Apricot Jam & Fromage Blanc Cream ¥367
Serving: From March 1, 2021 while supplies last
Participating Market Branches: Shinagawa/Yurakucho/Shinjuku/Ebisu/Hiroo/Yaesu/atré Kawasaki/CIAL Tsurumi/Yokohama/Nagoya/Osaka
Participating Cafe Branches: All
A taste of spring with fresh strawberry juice
This year, Dean & DeLuca are serving up the “Strawberry & Fruit Tomato” smoothie which is made with freshly-picked whole strawberries and tomatoes. Tomatoes are generally seen as a summer vegetable, but the most delicious time to enjoy tomatoes grown in Japan is the spring season just like strawberries. The strawberries and tomatoes take on plenty of sugar content during the winter season which brings a rich sweetness best enjoyed right now.
The juice is prepared fresh for every order, with whole fruits put into a mixer and then served.
Left: Strawberry Juice ¥583 / Right: Strawberry & Fruit Tomato ¥605
Serving: From March 1, 2021 while supplies last
Participating Market Branches: Roppongi/Shinagawa/Yurakucho/Shinjuku/Ebisu/Hiroo/Yaesu/atré Kawasaki/CIAL Tsurumi/Yokohama/Nagoya/Osaka/AMU Plaza Hakata
Participating Cafe Branches: All
Spring-exclusive Strawberry Apple Pie
Japanese apple pie chain GRANNY SMITH APPLE PIE & COFFEE is also providing a seasonal strawberry and apple pie filled with in-house custard.
GRANNY SMITH APPLE PIE & COFFEE’s Strawberry Apple | ¥648
Serving: March 2, 2021 – April 30, 2021
Participating Cafe Branches: All (Except Yurakucho LUMINE STREET)
Enjoy spring with a spring-coloured tumbler
Dean & DeLuca’s popular tumblers return in seasonal colours and fitted with an airtight screw cap. They’re available in “Tokyo Pink” and “Charcoal Grey” colours.
Tumblers: ¥3,080 Each
Released: From March 1, 2021
Participating Cafe Branches: All
*Cafe-exclusive, not available for purchase online
Dean & DeLuca Official Website: https://www.deandeluca.co.jp
Hello Kitty Movie to be Directed by Jennifer Coyle and Leo Matsuda
Sanrio and Warner Bros. Japan have announced the release of the first-ever Hollywood adaptation Hello Kitty movie which will be directed by animation veterans Jennifer Coyle and Leo Matsuda. New Line Cinema and Flynn Picture Company are on board for the film which will be a hybrid fusion of live-action and animation. The film’s title and release date have yet to be announced but it has been confirmed that it will be released worldwide.
Ⓒ 2021 SANRIO CO.,LTD.
Jennifer Coyle and Leo Matsuda are top-class artists and directors who bring their incredible history in and experience working with animation to the project. This marks their first collaboration, both of them beating many other directors to the job.
Coyle’s early days are rooted in series such as King of the Hill where she was a storyboard artist. She worked as a producer for the HBO Max animated series Harley Quinn and has also directed episodes in the hit animated series Bob’s Burgers, lent her penned her art for The Spectacular Spider-Man, and more.
Jennifer Coyle Photo by Andrew Marlin
Jennifer Coyle | Comment
“This is not only a rare chance to bring a beloved character to life, but also to spread the message of love, friendship and inclusivity that Hello Kitty stands for. The world so needs her brand of joy and happiness.”
Matsuda is a Brazilian director whose career began at Walt Disney Animation. He has worked on films such as Big Hero 6, Zootopia, Ralph Breaks the Internet and most recently Abominable for DreamWorks Animation.
Leo Matsuda Photo by Peter Lefevre Photography
Leo Matsuda | Comment
“Growing up in Brazil with a Japanese family, I was surrounded by the whimsy of Hello Kitty and it served as a reminder that it’s okay to be different. Along with Jen, FlynnPictureCo. and New Line, I am delighted by this incredible opportunity to work with one of the most universally beloved characters and expand their relatable Sanrio stories even further.”
Sanrio Official Website: https://www.sanrio.co.jp/
Japanese company JO, which operates seven restaurants serving Japanese-style food in Japan, launched its new anko red bean paste dessert brand Ankoto on February 28. The brand’s first product to be released is the “Anko Cheesecake.” All products will be released via their online store.
The launch of Ankoto
Ankoto launched after seeing many people in Japan calling for their desire to eat the same kinds of high quality anko sweet red bean paste desserts that they can in restaurants at home. The brand aims to bring many different sweet treats to its menu in collaboration with various other brands and satisfy customers’ sweet-toothed needs.
Ankoto also hopes to create all-new desserts using anko, an ingredient loved by the Japanese for years.
High-quality anko used in all desserts
The bean paste is made by hand every day over a period of two hours by Ankoto’s bakers. They use specially-selected beans grown in Tokachi, Hokkaido. No bad stuff is put in Ankoto’s desserts, the naturally sweetness comes from the sugar beet used in the cooking process.
The First Release: Anko Cheesecake
Ankoto’s first dessert to be released is the Anko Cheesecake, a popular mix of sweet red bean paste and cheese. This dessert was perfected after much trial and error over the course of half a year where over 100 iterations were tested. It’s made using creamy, full-bodied Brie de Meaux, a cheese that’s been called the king of cheeses. This cheesecake is gluten-free, using absolutely no wheat, and has a fresh sweetness brought about by the sugar beet. It’s an addictive amalgamation of sweet and salty and contains no nasty additives.
Ankoto Anko Cheesecake
Released: February 28, 2021
Price: ¥3,500 (Before Tax) + Shipping
Ankoto Online Shop: https://www.ankoto.jp
My Hero Academia Celebrates Japan’s White Day With Cakes and Macarons
Japanese cake company Priroll is celebrating White Day in Japan, the ‘sequel’ to Valentine’s Day, in collaboration with the popular TV anime series My Hero Academia with a collection of cakes and macarons.
There are seven sweet cakes to pick from which are baked with fruits such as peach and strawberry and finished with whipped cream or chocolate cream. There are also seven macaron sets which include chocolate, strawberry, pistachio, and orange flavours. These tasty treats are available from Priroll’s official website while supplies last.
White Day Cakes – ¥4,500 (Before Tax) / White Day Macarons 6 Set – ¥2,200 (Before Tax)
White Day day takes place in Japan annually on March 14, one month after Valentine’s Day, when people give reciprocal gifts to those who gifted them on Valentine’s Day. What better way to show your appreciation for your fellow anime-lover than with some sweet My Hero Academia love?
My Hero Academia White Day Sweets
Orders: From February 24, 2021
Buy Here: http://priroll.jp/shopbrand/ct5007
Doraemon Future Department Store to Open Pop-Up Shop in Ginza Mitsukoshi
Benelic Co., Ltd. has announced the opening of a pop-up shop version of Doraemon Future Department Store, the world’s first official Doraemon shop, at Ginza Mitsukoshi in Tokyo from March 17.
Doraemon Future Department Store first opened back in December 2019 in Odaiba, Tokyo. Dedicated to the beloved manga and anime character Doraemon, the store has opened various pop-up shops across Japan including Fukuoka, Osaka, and Nagoya. The new pop-up shop will be the first to open in Tokyo and will be stocked with the usual fan must-grabs, items exclusive to the Odaiba shop, Ginza exclusives, pre-sales, and more.
Ginza Mitsukoshi Exclusives & Pre-Sales
1. The Exclusives
The Ginza Mitsukoshi pop-up shop will sell four exclusive items including a T-shirt, handy tote bag, and more.
The merchandise will feature an illustration based on the designs of the shopping bags given at Doraemon Future Department Store. Take a look below.
Ginza Mitsukoshi Exclusive T-Shirt (5 Colours) | ¥3,520 (Tax Included)
Ginza Mitsukoshi Exclusive 2-Way Tote Bag | ¥2,860 (Tax Included)
2. The Presales
Fans can get their hands on pre-sales of 7 items in the “Flying to Department Store” series of kitchen, cookware, and other items, as well as 12 accessories that both kids and adults alike can enjoy.
Flying to Department Store Series – Kitchen Apron | ¥4,400 (Tax Included)
Flying to Department Store Series – 21cm Plate | ¥3,850 (Tax Included)
Doraemon & Dorami Back Earrings | ¥2,200 (Tax Included)
The pop-up shop will offer a customisation service which lets customers have different embroideries put into the T-shirts, tote bags, and key rings. The work is done on the spot by hand so you can see the result of what will be a very special item of which only one exists in the world. Perfect for Doraemon fans and gifts to friends and family.
The Ginza Mitsukoshi pop-up shop will also serve freshly-baked dorayaki stamped with Doraemon’s cute face. They will be made in limited quantities each day.
Dorayaki | ¥290 (Tax Included)
Bonus Items For Spending
1. Every purchase at the Doraemon Future Department Store pop-up will earn customers a free sticker. These are available in limited quantities.
2. The first 300 people at the pop-up shop to take their receipts to the main Doraemon Future Department Store in Odaiba between March 17 and 29 will receive a different limited-edition free sticker.
Ginza Mitsukoshi Original Doraemon Sticker
Odaiba Doraemon Future Department Store Sticker
Doraemon Future Department Store in Ginza Mitsukoshi 2021
Running: March 17, 2021 – March 29, 2021
Where: Ginza Mitsukoshi Shinkan Floor 7F
Address: 4-7-16 Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo
Opening Hours 10:00-20:00 (Until 18:00 on March 29)
Doraemon Future Department Store Official Website: https://mirai.dora-world.com/
TV Anime Romeo and the Black Brothers Opens Pop-Up Shops in Japan
Nippon Animation’s 1995 anime series Romeo and the Black Brothers is opening four pop-up shops in Japan selling a variety of themed merchandise. And for every ¥3,000 spent at the shops, customers will receive a special shopping bag with a design from the series.
Original Shopping Bag
Epos Card Holders Exclusive Items
A-Prize: Canvas Board
B-Prize: Complete Postcard Set
C-Prize: One Postcard (6 Designs)
The Marui City Yokohama branch pop-up shop will also feature a special exhibition of illustrations, photos, and artwork that take a look back over scenes from the series.
Romeo and the Black Brothers Pop-Up Shop
Japanese Pop-Up Shop Name: ロミオの青い空「ボルゴ横丁雑貨店」
Marui City Yokohama
Running: March 5, 2021 – March 14, 2021
Location: Marui City Yokohama Floor 7F
Running: March 27, 2021 – April 4, 2021
Location: Hakata Marui Floor 5F
Running: April 9, 2021 – April 25, 2021
Location: Kokubunji Marui Floor 4F
Running: April 16, 2021 – April 26, 2021
Location: Kobe Marui Floor 5F
Romeo and the Black Brothers Exhibition
Running: March 5, 2021 – March 14, 2021
Location: Marui City Yokohama Floor 7F
Opening Hours: 11:00-20:00 (Until 19:00 on March 14)
Epos Card Members Prizes
Running: Until March 5, 2021 @ 23:59 (JST)
Winners to be Chosen: 3
Official Website: https://www.sekaimeisaku-nostalgia.com/
2021 Sanrio Character Ranking Voting Begins in April
01.March.2021 | FASHION
Sanrio has finally announced news about the 36th annual Sanrio Character Ranking. This year’s award event, the 2021 Sanrio Character Ranking, will open initial votes on April 9 to May 24 when fans can vote for their favourite character from Sanrio’s roster. As with previous years, the 2021 run will also welcome the “Collaboration Category” of the awards which will feature 27 character entries from those who have collaborated with other companies and businesses over the past year.
Ichigo Shimbun is a monthly magazine published by Sanrio. It not only includes information about the latest character merchandise, but is also the place where the Sanrio Character Ranking first began in 1986. From Sanrio’s long list of over 450 characters, just 80 are entered into the awards each year. Cinnamoroll took first place for the 3rd year in a row at the 2020 Sanrio Character Ranking which we covered in detail, including the initial first round up of winners and second round up.
Normally, the results are announced in-person at a big event. This year’s announcement gathering was originally scheduled for June 8, but was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It will now be hosted online instead, and fans will also be able to vote using the new Sanrio members service Sanrio+.
This year’s 80 entrants are now being rolled out over on the official Sanrio Character Awards Twitter page.
This Year’s Award Theme: “The Witness of a New World – Your Support Will Change the Future”
Every Sanrio Character Awards has a theme, and this year’s is, “The Witness of a New World – Your Support Will Change the Future.” The “new world” refers to the future of Sanrio—which celebrated its 60th anniversary last year—that fans will bear witness to. The key visuals for the 2021 Sanrio Character Awards have the characters holding a magnifying glass with which they are peeking into that new world.
New Entrants Announce Everyday On the Official Twitter Page
The Sanrio Character Rankings’ official Twitter page will post the key visuals and personal messages from all 80 entrants on its official Twitter page between February 26 to March 31. Leading this year’s awards ceremony are the popular characters Kuromi, Badtz-Maru, and Hangyodon. Voting opened on February 25.
How to Cast Your Vote
Votes for the 2021 Sanrio Character Ranking can be cast online, at Sanrio shops, and for the first time, on the new Sanrio members service Sanrio+. Votes for the Collaboration Category however can only be placed online. Last year’s vote was open to all fans worldwide. It is unconfirmed whether this year will be the same, but stay tuned as we follow the event.
- Online Votes (Smartphone Only) *Cannot be cast on computers or tablets
- Sanrio Shops
- Sanrio Online Shop
- Ichigo Shimbun (May 2021 Issue, on sale April 10 / June 2021 Issue, on sale May 10).
*Ichigo Shimbun voting open from April 10
- Sanrio+ Members Smile Vote (Sanrio Shops/Online Votes)
- Sanrio+ Members Ticket Vote (Online Votes) *More info TBA
- Other Voting Methods (TBA)
Vote With Sanrio+
Sanrio+ allows members to exchange 100 Smiles (the currency on the Sanrio Shop) for two voting chips. Members can exchange a maximum of 1,000 smiles for 20 chips in one go. The chips are spent at the voting box on the Sanrio Shop. One chip counts for a total of three votes.
Additionally, when members first log in to Sanrio+ on the voting website, they can used 50 Smiles to cast one vote. Members can vote with a maximum of 500 smiles in one day. One Smile vote counts for a total of two votes.
Stay tuned for the latest news and updates on the 2021 Sanrio Character Ranking.
2021 Sanrio Character Ranking
Running: April 9, 2021 – May 24, 2021 (From April 10 in Ichigo Shimbun)
First Round-Up Announcements: April 14, 2021 at Noon (JST)
Second Round-Up Announcements: May 13, 2021 at Noon (JST)
Winner Announcement: June 8, 2021 (Online event, details TBA)