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Swedish home furnishing company IKEA, as many of you are undoubtedly aware, has a huge presence around the world, and Japan is no exception. Thousands of us enjoy wandering around their gargantuan stores on the weekends, gazing at their pop furniture displays and homeware or wolfing down a serving of their Swedish meatballs at their cafeteria.

Well now, IKEA Japan has news that’s sure to please sweets lovers in particular — for a limited time, they’re be offering an all-you-can-eat “Sweets Buffet”, which includes some delightful-looking Swedish treats that we’re dying to try, for the very reasonable price of 499 yen (US$4.25)! Who wouldn’t be excited about sweet news like that?

While the Sweets Buffet is apparently being promoted as a Valentine’s Day campaign, it also has a traditional Swedish theme as well, as one of the desserts they’re serving is the semla (also known as fastlagsbulle), a sweet bun filled almond paste and whipped cream.

▼The semla: goodness, that cream looks scrumptious!Ikea コピー1 Semla

According to IKEA Japan’s explanation, in the past, the people of Sweden would observe 40 days of fasting before Easter, and they would also prepare for that fast with a brief period of feasting preceding it called fastlagen. One of the rich foods traditionally enjoyed during this feast was the semla, and although the tradition of fasting is now no longer observed, the sweet roll is still widely eaten today in Sweden this time of year.

▼The buffet also offers Swedish-style pancakes, which are basically crepes, that can be enjoyed with jam and cream.
Ikea コピー2 pancakes

▼And yes, that’s a chocolate fountain you saw in the back of the first picture, and it’s part of the buffet too!
Ikea コピー3 chocolate fountain

Of course, they have various other tempting items that you can choose from as well, including miniature sundaes, cookies, several different cakes and fruit punch.

The Sweets Buffet is on offer each day between 3pm and 6pm until February 15  at all IKEA stores in Japan, and for those of you with very young family members, it’s free for children aged three and under! And if you’re over the tender age of three, well, we still think 499 yen is a pretty good deal for a chance to get your fill of sweets, especially some from Sweden, which we don’t see much of in Japan. What more delightful way could there be to get a taste of Swedish culture, after all, than a reasonably priced sweet-laden buffet?

Source and photos: IKEA Japan press release from PR Times (Japanese)