One of my favorite thing to do when I’m abroad is visit the local supermarkets and grocery stores. I really like seeing what the supermarkets are packed with and look for stuff I can’t find at home. This time I really pushed my limits as I’ve returned from Tokyo with an entire suitcase full of snacks and random sweets. Here I plan to share some images and impressions from each. Every now and then I’ll add more snacks as I open and taste them.
One of my favorite so far is Fried Seaweed Setouchi Sudachi Flavor. It’s a crispy, deep-fried nori seasoned sourly with Japanese citrus (Sudachi) juice. I really love Fried Seaweed, and this one is really unique because of the kick from the citrus juice. I bought 2 bags of these and they were gone pretty fast.
The next one, from the same brand, is called Ikaten Setouchi, Lemon Flavor. It’s a crisp fried squid with a lemon flavor. It’s nice but I much prefer the fried nori over this snack. I found both snacks in a delicatessen shop in Shimokitazawa while trying to pass some time in the morning until the area wakes up.
On to the subpar snacks. This is a stem seaweed by Maejima Food I got from the Daiso shop in Harajuku (100 Yen store). The texture of the steam seaweed is pretty weird. It’s very hard to bite and chew plus the smell is not very pleasant. The package is super cute and this is what caught my attention and made me buy it but I would definitely not repeat this purchase.
This is Morokosh Wa Taro by Kado, which is essentially corn and corm rings. This crispy corn snack has the texture of a packing foam and doesn’t really have much flavor, but I found myself reaching the bag again and again until it was all finished. I bought this small pack (17g) at Super Potato in Akihabara for only ¥30 ($0.25/1₪). Even though this is a classic video game store, they have a section of snacks on the top floor. Most of them are smaller versions and are cheap so I think it’s a nice way to explore Japanese snacks without investing a lot of money.
This one is another puffy snack – Riska Umai wa – cheese flavor. I also bought this small pack (17g) at Super Potato in Akihabara for ¥30. The cheesy rings are crunchy but get pretty sticky as you chew them, so they annoyingly get stuck in your teeth.
I was pretty anxious to try the next one. It’s not visually appealing, to say the least and the smell is not the best. It kind of looks and smells like a dog treat to me. What also added to the mystery was the fact that nothing was written in English on the package, which made it really hard for me to find any information online. Overcoming my fear I tasted it and discovered a crunchy snack with what I believe to be brown sugar flavor. After two bites this thing went straight to the garbage. My brother, who studied Japanese at university, did some research and found that the name of this snack is Puchan, but he couldn’t find any information in English online.