Suddenly, Japan’s penchant for putting corn on pizzas seems relatively normal.

Made with tomatoes, mozzarella, basil, and olive oil, pizza Margherita is about as classic as pizzas come. And yes, Pizza Hut Japan will be happy to bake a traditional pizza Margherita for you…but now they’ll also be happy to bake you what they’re billing as a “Japanese Margherita” with some very unorthodox ingredients.

Called the Super New Star Umegherita, the marque ingredient here is ume, or Japanese plums. That’s “plums,” in the plural sense, as each and every slice of the Umegherita gets its own whole umeboshi (pickled plum).

Pizza Hut Japan isn’t just tossing any old picked plums on here either. The Umegherita was developed in partnership with Tokyo umeboshi specialty stand Tachigui Umeboshiya, and the companies started with a list of some 300 varieties of pickled plums produced in Japan. They pared that down to 16 promising candidates, and after testing them out decided on Shirara, a type of Kishunanko plum grown in Wakayama, Japan’s top ume-producing prefecture. Kishunanko are allowed to fully ripen and drop off the branch naturally before being harvested, and Shirara were chosen for their thick skin, plump, meaty texture, and flavorful juiciness with a mixture of sour and sweet notes.

The Umegherita’s cheese is a mixture of mozzarella and gouda, with a pink ume sauce drizzled on top for extra plum flavor. Leaves of oba, an edible herb sometimes called “Japanese basil” replace the orthodox basil of an everyday pizza Margherita, and the crispy crust gets an extra dash of salt, which should bring to mind the saltiness that umeboshi often acquire as part of the pickling process.

▼ The Umegherita, in front of containers of umeboshi

The Umegherita is on sale now and will be available until June 12, unless it proves so popular that Pizza Hut runs out of ingredients before then. It comes in medium size only, priced at 2,600 yen (US$16.75) by itself, but you can also order it with a regular pizza Margherita as part of a two-pizza comparison pack for 3,500 yen…

…or with two cans of alcoholic beverages (Kirin beer or lemon shochu sours) for 2,950 yen…

…which is, perhaps, Pizza Hut Japan’s tacit admission that they understand that plum pizza is something some people might not be ready to try for the first time while they’re still sober.

Surce, images: PR Times
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