Strawberry Mochi

Brand: Yamazaki Cost: 129 yen Found At: Family Mart THE STRAWBERRIES ARE BACK! The hardest part of the long, hot summer and the short, temperamental autumn was the absence of one of my favorite desserts in Japan: the strawberry mochi. Much like the chestnut mochi, this is just a regular mochi (red bean paste in... Continue Reading →

Godiva Belgian Chocolate Sandwich

Brand: Uchi Café and Godiva Cost: 324 yen Found At: 7-11 “The Japanese diet is so healthy!” they said. “Japanese people are thin because they eat so well!” They told me. And then I showed up and I swear that this country is actively trying to give me diabetes. The sweets are the sweetest and... Continue Reading →

Spicy Fried Rice and Pork Onigiri

Brand: Family Mart Cost: 195 yen Found At: Family Mart This onigiri talks a big game. It’s from the Family Mart’s “man food” line – a randomly curated collection of ready-meals that seem to assume that women do not like meat. This one seems to have made the cut because of its extreme spiciness –... Continue Reading →

Shiroi Koibito

Brand: Ishiya Co., Ltd. Cost: 700 yen for 12 cookies Found at: Break Room (from Hokkaido) The problem with the jump between Japanese and English is not the grammar, not the vocabulary, not even the overflow of verb structures on either side of the divide. The issue, it seems, is that of the utter failure... Continue Reading →

Apple Kit-Kat

Brand: Nestle Cost: Travel Souvenier Found by: Coworker Liz   Chocolate is amazing. Apple is amazing. Chocolate apple is unpalatable. It is very, very rare that I do not finish something that I started eating. It’s a matter of some personal pride that I can get through anything. But half-way through this small chocolate and... Continue Reading →

Crispy Chocolate Orange

Brand: Yaokin Cost: 54 yen Found At: Daiso When I was in middle school, one of the most popular ways to pass the time was to discuss “dream guys.” Never mind that our idea of romance came from 90s rom-coms that we would later disavow - or that in a few years many of them... Continue Reading →

Bamboo Shoot Village Chocolates

Brand: Meiji Cost: 54 yen Found At: Daiso There is something about being human that compels us to seek out a clan. From the profound to the mundane, we will identify ourselves with just about anything – neighborhoods, sports teams, TV shows, toilet paper hanging techniques, dietary restrictions – if there is something that will... Continue Reading →

Tigresse Matcha

Brand: Gateau Festa Harada Cost: Break Room Found At: Break Room Not long ago, the sixth graders went to Kyoto on a school trip. They saw all the big sites – Kyomizudera temple with its beautiful view, the golden and silver pavilions that shine in the autumn sunlight, Sanjusangendo with its thousand life-sized statues of... Continue Reading →

Throat Candy – Herb Blend

Brand: Lotte Cost: 100 yen Found at: Yamadai   At this point, I am more cold than woman. It’s been over two weeks since I high-fived my way into a seasonal cold and I’ve forgotten what it’s like to go to work without a vial of ibuprofen, a box of tissues, and a stick of... Continue Reading →

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