Who needs a Slowpoke Tail when you have all these yummy noodles?

August is the eighth month, which means in Japanese it’s hachigatsu. You can read most numbers in Japanese a few different ways, and eight is no exception: ya or hachi both mean “eight”. Ten is a bit more complex in that it can be read juu or tou, but the latter can be accented (dou) in a pinch. So August 10, or 08/10, can be read like…yadou.

From there it’s only a hop and a skip away to Yadon, the Japanese name for the easygoing Water-type Pokémon Slowpoke. Slowpoke is a beloved guy both in and outside of the Pokémon world. Not only does it have an adorable, dopey face and a lackadaisical approach to life, but its tail is a much beloved delicacy.

Sadly, Slowpoke itself isn’t real. But it did become the fictional ambassador to the prefecture of Kagawa in 2018, and so every August 10, Slowpoke Day, is a great cause for celebration. Kagawa is well-known for its udon noodles, which not only are thick and floury but sound a lot like yadon if you say the name three times fast, so we ordered ourselves a spread of Slowpoke-themed Kagawa cuisine.

The first one we tried was perhaps the most adorably packaged of the lot. Slowpoke Udon costs 450 yen (US$4.08) and contains both pink and white noodles that evoke the image of a Slowpoke’s tail.

“So tasty that even Shellder wants to chomp on it!”*

*Shellder attaches to Slowpoke’s tail in order to help it evolve into Slowbro!

The udon noodles have a perfect balance of pink and white coloring. When serving them onto a plate you can almost envision the tail shape around them…

The noodles have a smooth, chewy taste. And don’t worry, the pink flavoring is all from natural ingredients!

Next up is a meal that uses another Kagawa specialty, Slowpoke Olive Udon.

Shodoshima in Kagawa Prefecture is an island famous for cultivating olives, so it’s only fitting that Slowpoke would adorn a special udon with crushed olive leaves in its flour. The noodles have a faint green color to them and are delightfully chewy, with a very subtle herb-like flavor. Serve them cold for a summery treat! This packet costs 470 yen.

If you’ve played Pokémon Sword or Pokémon Shield, you’ll know that there are two distinct types of Slowpoke. The common version we know and love is from Kanto, the land in the original games. In Galar, though, Slowpoke has a regional variant with a jaunty golden tint atop its head and at the end of its tail.

Typically Kanto Slowpokes have sweet-tasting tails, but Galarian Slowpokes’ tails are spicy. This makes them a perfect complement to our next product: the Galarian Slowpoke Curry Udon, which costs 1,296 yen.

The dish comes with a cute, edible Slowpoke in the form of a stamped oiri. Oiri are a traditional Kagawa snack made from rice and this Slowpoke version looks right at home, bathing in the curry!

The curry has a deliciously robust flavor and spicy finish so it’s well worth purchasing beyond the Slowpoke novelty.

We also purchased some Slowpoke Wasanbon, traditional Kagawa sweets crafted from fine-grain sugar. These are sculpted into adorable shapes in a variety of pastel colors. The Wasanbon box cost 594 yen.

If these delicacies look tempting, why not try visiting Kagawa itself? Slowpoke itself is the last person who’ll mind if you show up after Slowpoke Day to celebrate. And if you’re curious about other locales with a tie-in critter, make sure to read our articles about Iwate’s ambassador Geodude, Hokkaido’s representatives of twin Vulpixes, Tottori’s representatives of two kinds of Sandshrew, Miyazaki’s representative the tropical-themed Alolan Exeggutor, Miyagi’s ocean protector representative Lapras and Fukushima’s cuddly pink representative Chansey.

Related: Pokémon Local Acts Kagawa
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