The best-selling Japanese solo musical artist in history celebrates her 25th anniversary with a special sweet treat.

This year has been big for Ayumi Hamasaki, one of Japan’s major pop princesses and star of the Heisei era (1989-2019). Nicknamed Ayu by fans, she’s currently celebrating the 25th anniversary of her major musical debut in 1998 with a nationwide tour in all 47 prefectures of Japan. Unique for someone who has regularly filled up Japan’s largest musical venues throughout her career, Ayu has purposely selected smaller, more intimate local venues for this tour in order to connect more closely with her fans.

▼ As a longtime fan of Ayu, I was lucky to snag tickets to her July 9 performance in Chiba, her very first tour stop, in the 12th row. I credit my good fortune to praying at the special Tokyo shrine for concert tickets.


▼ A selection of celebratory flowers sent by other musical artists and companies to Ayu in commemoration of the start of her anniversary tour.


While Ayu’s concert tours always come with plenty of apparel and other merch, the latest product to hit the shelves seems to be garnering special interest, as it’s a collaboration with Club Harie, which is a popular maker of baumkuchen cakes (a German cake that’s extremely popular in Japan) that regularly sell out.

The limited-edition Ayumi Hamasaki x Club Harie cakes come in two versions. First up is a heart brownie cake, which is a mix of brownie, ganache, and macadamia nuts and is pre-cut into whimsical, puzzle piece-like slices. It comes packaged in a leopard-print box, which is a key visual of Ayu’s current tour and reminiscent of her getup on the cover of the 2000 album Duty.

▼ Ayumi Hamasaki x Club Harie heart brownie cake (3,000 yen [US$20.08])

Meanwhile, the second offering is a white chocolate heart brownie cake with the addition of slightly tart raspberry jam. This one comes in a vividly pink box.

▼ The Ayumi Hamasaki x Club Harie heart brownie cake (white chocolate), priced at 3,000 yen.

Both of the cakes include a pink “A” symbol, which is Ayu’s main logo as an artist. In addition, each box measures 12 x 12 x 4.7 centimeters (4.7 x 4.7 x 1.9 inches) and contains one of three randomly selected tin badges featuring Ayu’s longtime mascot “Ayupan” (a play on her name and a panda).

▼ Leopard-print kimono Ayupan, kotatsu Ayupan, and upcoming Year of the Dragon Ayupan!

Ayu’s musical label Avex began taking orders for the baumkuchen cakes through its online Mu-mo Shop on November 2 and will continue to take orders until November 16 for a planned delivery at the end of December. Orders can also be placed through Club Harie physical store locations (November 20-November 26) or on its online shop (December 4- December 10) with a planned delivery of early January. Until then, we suppose we’ll have to keep ourselves busy by munching on all of the flavors of baumkuchen at popular Japanese home goods and lifestyle store Muji.

Source, images: PR Times
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