Temperatures are rising in Tokyo, y’all.

When the mercury goes through he roof, there’s nothing quite like a refreshing shaved ice, or kakigori in Japanese, to cool you down. Of course, when that snowy treat is served up half-naked by a fine specimen of chiseled man-muscle, you might actually end up hotter under the collar than before.

Ladies, meet Noriyuki Okubo from Saga Prefecture’s body-building group Gold U-35, which aims to attract more visitors to Saga by showing the world there are hotties out in the countryside too. He’s in town to continue Tokyo’s fine tradition of “macho” food events and use his bulging biceps to shave up a storm of kakigori on July 22 and 23.

The event is being held as part of the opening festivities for a new Shinjuku branch of Shugar Market, an all-you-can-drink bar specializing in umeshu and other fruit liquors. They offer over 100 different varieties to try with no limit on time for 3,240 yen (US$30.52) and allow you to bring your own food, just like at sister shochu bar Havespi upstairs.

Solely in the interest of providing our readers with the latest information on attractions in Japan, I headed to the press preview and brought back these pictures.

▼Okubo mans an old-school kakigori ice shaver. I’m sure the sleeveless top is just to free up his arms for turning the crank.


▼ The crowd cheers him on with cries of “muscle, muscle!”


▼ Ganbare, Okubo-san, you’re almost there!


 ▼ The finished product, topped with sweet strawberry syrup, also from Saga


 ▼ If strawberries aren’t your thing, you can also get a kakigori topped with a puree of Asian pears.


 ▼ The PR staff steps in to touch up Okubo-san’s baby oil. Hey, it’s work. You gotta do what you gotta do, right?


 ▼After making sure everyone got a kakigori, Okubo-san challenged the group to a game of bodybuilder rock, paper, scissors.


 ▼ Rock IMG_9056

  ▼ Paper IMG_9059



 ▼The prize for the winner? Getting carried around in Okubo’s arms.


 ▼ D’awwwww!


▼ Other tasty contributions from Saga Prefecture which are being featured as part of the two-week opening celebration: pomegranate, yuzu citrus, prune and chocolate liquors


▼ Asahara Brewery’s popular Fruit Sour Z line. Just add soda water for a fizzy, fruity cocktail.


▼ Shugar Market’s own line of cold-pressed fruit liquors


▼ Like Havespi, Shugar Market also offers a bar area to customize your drink.


▼ They even have draft beer if you need a break from the sweet stuff, though it costs an extra 200 yen per glass.


▼Loosely, “The muscles make the kakigori.”


Okubo and another member of Gold U-35 will be on hand to make kakigori for customers on July 22 from 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. and on July 23 from 1 p.m., 7 p.m. and 9 p.m., but if you want to get one for yourself, better act fast. Reservations for the opening event are almost sold out. People must really be dying for some shaved ice…

Bar Information
Shugar Market
Address: Shinjuku Watasei Tama Building 5F, 3-9-9 Shinjuku, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo
東京都新宿区新宿3-9-9 新宿ワタセイ・タマビル5階
Telephone number: 03-6457-7884
Hours: 5 p.m. – 11 p.m. (Monday – Friday), noon – 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. – 11 p.m. (Saturday, Sunday and holidays)
Admission/entrance fee: 3,240 yen (US$30.52)

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