B gourmet

A New Convenience Store (Just Probably Not Convenient For You)

The Japanese convenience store chain Poplar has announced its newest store opening in none other than Tachikawa Detention Center. As in the clink, the joint, the hoosegow: jail. Read More

The perfect summer snack – potato chips that are made to be cool, literally

Aren’t potato chips just great? They’re the ultimate comfort food (well, at least they are to me) and they come in a wide variety of flavors to suit your every mood. Well, there’s going to be another novel flavor for potato chip lovers in Japan to try, and the flavor is not the only thing that’s interesting about these new potato chips. Read More

Have the Ultimate Domino’s Pizza – All the toppings and Over $100!

Our adventurous reporters previously tried a plate of Coco Ichiban Curry with everything on it, and this time we decided to follow that up with an order of Domino’s Pizza with all the toppings on it. But we didn’t order just a regular pizza with all the toppings; that would be too simple.

No, we ordered a Triple Mille-Feuille crust pizza with all the toppings! The Triple Mille-Feuille crust consists of three layers of thin ultra crispy crust with plenty of cheese sandwiched in between. So, we placed our order and waited to see what the pizza would be like. Read More

You’ve probably never eaten melon with mayonnaise before. Well, we saw it being done by actress Erika Toda on the T.V. drama “SPEC” and thought we would give it a try. But seriously, melon with mayonnaise? Wouldn’t melon taste better as, well, simple melon?

Read More

Yay ‘merica! Bacon Shake! But How’s It Taste?

Well, that’s what we’re here for.

So, Americans love bacon. Bacon with eggs. Bacon with burgers. Bacon with waffles, even. We’ve even seen bacon with chocolate and other sweets. Read More

School Lunch Cookbook a Hit With Nostalgic Dieters

If you are feeling a bit nostalgic for the school lunch experience, you don’t have to pass yourself off as a grade schooler and sneak into your local elementary school. You can find healthy, hearty school lunch recipes in a recently published book by nutrition specialist Katsuko Fujiwara called “School Lunches at Home“.

And these recipes aren’t just any old standby. They’re the kind of meals that make everyone happy. Kids want school meals to be delicious, parents want them to be nutritious, and schools just want them to be reasonably priced and easy to prepare. That’s a high bar to clear, but with over 20,000 schools in Japan offering a school lunch program, there were sure to be a few offerings that hit the trifecta, and Fujiwara has compiled some of the best for you.
Read More

Goose That Laid the Golden Egg Hiding Somewhere in Japan

Have you ever seen such a lustrous gold egg before? I’m willing to bet most people would answer “no” to that. And yet, this shiny egg is the real thing! Well, at least it’s a real egg, anyway.
Read More

Do Milk and Ramen Make a Good Combination? There’s a Ramen Shop in Tokyo That Lets You Find Out!

Ramen comes in a wide variety of flavors. In the mood for soy-sauce based shoyu ramen? Or maybe you want to have miso-flavored ramen? How about salt (shio) or pork-stock (tonkotsu) ramen? These are the standard options for just about every ramen shop in Japan.

But what would you say to milk flavored ramen? Is such a ramen flavor even available?

Well, it is at a certain ramen shop in Tokyo, and apparently it’s quite tasty too!

Read More

We Order A Massive 2 Kilogram Steak And Feel Manlier Than Ever!

When western people visit Japan they often complain about the small size of the portions served to them at restaurants, especially when it comes to steak.  The average Japanese steak weighs in at around 150-200g (5-7oz) which would make for a decent sized American hamburger but little more than a frozen dinner-caliber steak. Read More

Ramen Shop Serves Mountains of Meat, Gets Customers and Laughs

There is a ramen shop in Japan that will pile the sliced pork higher than anything you’ve ever seen. It’s name, fittingly enough, is Niku-ya (Butcher Shop), and according to their sign, “We’re not a ramen restaurant, we’re meat specialists.” It definitely seems like they want to emphasize that end of the business rather than the noodles.

While it does look like a ramen shop and their customers are there to order ramen, their main selling point is definitely their meat. It’s said that their pork ramen has the largest portion of roasted pork slices of any shop in Japan! Well, we had to go check that out. Read More

Investigation of North Korea Reveals Their Fried Chicken Is Pretty Good

In these days of globalization there are very few countries that can keep themselves shrouded in a veil of mystery like North Korea does. Although there is information out there, it can be hard to get a clear picture of what life is like in such a guarded nation. For example, how do they eat?

North Korea would never allow Western businesses like McDonald’s or KFC to get their greedy capitalist hands on its people, but that doesn’t mean they reject the fast food format itself. In February, 2012, one lucky Japanese traveler in Pyongyang was able to experience what a North Korean fast food shop was like first-hand and document it.

Read More

China McDonald’s Finally Brings Curly Fries to The Asian Masses

China’s McDonald’s restaurants are pretty much the same as they are in other countries. They have the fries and burgers that we all have come to know and love. They use a different kind of oil for frying that’s out of this world, but that should be expected of a country that has centuries of experience in the art of fried food.

Now it seems McDonald’s China has also staged a coup in the fast-food realm and adopted the curly fry! We rushed in to investigate how they match up.

Read More

What Could Be More Fun Than A Crazy Delicious Stick Stick Party?

A new toy has pushed its way into the crowded Japanese market. Called the Crazy Delicious Stick Stick Party, it sells for 699yen (US$9). We got our hands on one of these babies to try it out a get a stick party started, but first the name probably needs some explanation.

If you walk into any convenience store across Japan and scour the lower shelves, under all the chocolate bars and gum you will find one of Japan’s most popular snacks, Umaibo (literally ‘delicious stick,’ which we will use throughout the remainder of this article for comedic effect). Delicious Stick is like a giant, rod-shaped version of that cheese-flavored snack of mysterious ingredients that goes by many names: cheese puffs, cheezies, cheese curls, cheese balls, and so on. However, in addition to cheese flavor, Delicious Stick comes in a wide range of flavors, including chocolate or shrimp and mayonnaise. At 10 yen (US$0.13) a pop they’re a pretty good little snack.

By using Crazy Delicious Stick Stick Party, you can – get this – cleanly cut one Delicious Stick into several smaller sticks. According to the name of this toy, making four smaller Delicious Sticks from a single large one will result in a “crazy stick party”. We rushed in to investigate this claim.

Read More

Anyone who is familiar with Japanese culture knows about the packaged lunch known as “bento.” A bento can be found homemade or bought from a supermarket, convenience store, or restaurant that specializes in bento. One particular subset of bento is known as ekiben, or, the “station bento.”

As its name implies, you can buy a station bento on the platforms of major train stations across Japan. The station bento is beloved by travelers in Japan because they use ingredients famous or native to the region that you buy them, letting you experience the taste of an area even if you are just passing through. However, there is just one shortcoming to the station bento – it’s cold.

Luckily, thanks to the leading researchers in the field of bento technology, this is no longer the case!

Read More

Would You Like Thousands of Baby Fish To Go With Your Pasta?

Near Musashi-Kosugi Station in Kanagawa Prefecture, there is a restaurant called Italian Izakaya: Natura that constantly has line-ups outside. Regardless of the day, it seems the place is always wall-to-wall with customers.

While Natura is said to have good food in general, the real buzz is spreading about their specialty: Whitebait Piled on Peperoncino Pasta – 880yen (US$11). Whitebait refers to immature fish that are collected, cooked and eaten whole in large numbers, and are popular in Italian cuisine.

We decided to go to Italian Izakaya: Natura and investigate what all the fuss is about.

Read More

Finally, Potato Chips That Make Us Feel Filthy Rich

On 19 January, potato chip maker, Koikeya, announced they will sell a new flavor in their Premium Series line of chips, this time using the flavor of one of the most expensive delicacies in the world, truffles.

Sold at convenience stores across Japan from January 30 to February 6, you too can get a taste of the good life for only around 150 yen (US$2) a bag.

Read More

You Can Take The Yoshinoya Out of Japan, And It Seems You Can Take The Japan Out of Yoshinoya Too

The number one gyūdon (beef and rice in a bowl) restaurant, Yoshinoya, has been working its way into Thai markets. Already having infiltrated America and China amongst other countries, it appears there is no stopping Japan’s favorite beef and rice restaurant from world domination.

However, the further a restaurant strays from its homeland, the harder it is to keep the original atmosphere of that restaurant, as a team of reporters from our editorial department learned during a recent trip to Thailand. At first they were simply curious whether the taste was the same as Japan or not, but what they discovered was far more troubling. One member of the party, who was new to Thailand, exclaimed upon seeing the menu: “Huh? A cup of tea costs 30 baht (US$1)? What’s this about?! It’s free in Japan!”

Read More

Carbonated Tea and Yakuza: A Big Hit With Thai Kids, But Something’s Not Quite Right

Although a popular drink around Asia, it can be difficult to turn the younger generation on to the simple pleasures of tea. In order to compete with the likes of colas and energy drinks, Bangkok tea makers have come up with Chakuza.

Chakuza combines the nutrition and refreshment of tea (“cha” in Japanese) with the rugged attitude and danger of organized crime (“yakuza” in Japanese). And according to a clerk at a Bangkok 7-11, it’s selling really well.

Read More

Japanese Packed Lunches That Are Hard to Swallow; Edible Batteries and Bathroom Cleansers Enough to Make Andy Warhol Blush

Recently a lot of attention has been directed at Japanese mothers’ painstakingly crafted packed lunches called charabens (character bentos). It’s something of a competition for mothers to send their children off to school with not just the best tasting or healthiest food, but also the most creatively arranged. The BBC ran a feature showing how housewives attend classes to arrange rice, seaweed, and other ingredients into characters ranging from Hello Kitty and Totoro to Michael Jackson and Barack Obama.

Read More

Manhattan Japanese Restaurant EAST Serves Unexpected Tear-Jerker

I happened upon a kaiten sushi-ya (conveyor belt sushi restaurant) while on an extended trip to New York, and I was surprised that something other than the hot wasabi brought tears to my eyes.

Japanese Restaurant EAST in Manhattan is a far cry from any Japanese kaiten sushi-ya – this place is as hip as any nightclub in the area. The chef is not Japanese, but his skills are just as good as those of any “genuine” sushi chef. He rolled out perfectly squeezed nigiri sushi and delicious miso soup.

And though I like to get adventurous with the wasabi from time to time, I was not prepared for the rotating item that would move me to tears on this day.

Read More

  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. 3
  4. 4