It seems like every nation has their own unique traditions during New Year’s, and Japan is no exception. During New Year’s, it was often traditional for Japanese shops (including markets) to close down for the holiday. So, with dining-out options limited, folks would then dine on osechi ryouri over the course of several days. The dish, which is served in stackable bento boxes, features a cornucopia of symbolic goodies–for instance, shrimp typically represents the elderly (because they’re hunched over).

Interestingly, Nintendo is coming out with their own osechi ryouri for 2016 to be sold in Japanese department store Takashimaya. Nintendo’s version is Super Mario-themed, and it comes with special cards. The price is pretty steep ($225), but since it’s meant to last a few days, it might be worth the price.

(Culture Lab via Kotaku)


As you probably know, Japan is the home to a number of bizarre yet intriguing Kit Kat concoctions. Now a coffeehouse called “Pronto” has endeavored to take things to the next level by offering Kit Kat croissants.

The two offerings currently available include milk chocolate and matcha green tea-flavored Kit Kats in the center of a baked croissant. The flavors have been described as “a great contrast to the bitterness of a cup of coffee”. It can also be heated to get it all melty up in there.

Both examples are priced at 170 yen (US$1.40) and are reportedly available at all Pronto location from 7 am to 5:30 pm. However, they will only be around for a limited time.

Hit the jump to check out additional pics.

[click to continue…]

panda1 copy

Hot and buttery.

Thanks to Village Vanguard, you can celebrate all things toasty and doughy with their newest line of bread-inspired cushions, slippers and backpacks. The Japanese novelty company will be releasing the bread-themed goodies this November, but you can check out some of their offerings after the break.

[click to continue…]


If you’ve ever seen traditional samurai armor, then you know that the craftsmanship is absolutely astounding. Now you can actually buy some affordable armor from Samurai Age (albeit in miniature form) that are accurate recreations of sets of armor that were worn by famous warriors in Japanese history.

These samurai armor sets are certified as “Wonder 500” products by the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. The “500” title is a prestigious one, as it denotes that the armor is one of 500 goods, products or services that are considered by the Ministry to be the best of the best. The armor can be used to protect your favorite figurines, or to cover bottles of wine, shochu or sake. From RocketNews:

Designed to fit over 900-millilitre (35-ounce) sake (Japanese rice wine) and shochu (Japanese distilled liquor) bottles, the Samurai Armour Bottle Cover range also works perfectly for 750-millilitre (25-ounce) wine bottles.

As for the pricing, they’re pretty affordable, especially considering how well they’re made. The Date Masumune at the top left, for example, is priced at 7,020 yen or $58.23.

Check out some more pics after the break…

[click to continue…]

3d bread

A new trend is taking over Instagram in Japan that features the work of bread magicians bakers that create adorable, edible 3D characters called “chigiri-pan”. Inspired by the likes of Disney, Ghibli, San-X, and Moomin characters, artisans have baked outstanding doughy cuteness by playing with a variety of textures and colors.

Check out some of our favorites after the break…

[click to continue…]


This compact charcoal grill cube is small enough to use just about anywhere. It measures 6.5 x 6.5 x 5.1 and comes with detachable parts for grilling, small spit roasting, or even kettle boiling.

I wonder if I can put one on my desk for some BBQ and browsing without burning my house down.

Check out more pics after the break…

[click to continue…]


Fans of Usagi Yojimbo–the comic book series by Stan Sakai which follows the adventures of Miyamoto Usagi, a katana-wielding rabbit–will definitely love this cake topper.

Created by The Bunny Baker Café & Cake Studio, this topper is absolutely perfect–the details, ranging from his swords to the scar over his eye, are totally on point. This is one bunny you wouldn’t want to mess with.

(via Betweenthepages)


Toru Yamashito, a blacksmith from Japan, created a series of beautiful, high-carbon steel utility knives that just happen to be shaped like whales. As you’ll see after the break, the knives are made to look like five different types of whales (I think the humpback is my favorite!). They’re actually utility knives, which means that they can be used for just about any daily task ranging from opening letters to dicing up some apples.

Kujira Whale Knives are hand forged Multi Purpose Utility knives that have a Virgin High Carbon White Steel #2 inner core with a “Kurouchi” Black Forged finish and handle. Famed for their playful and imaginative whale shaped handles and their durable edge retentive blades these unique knives are sure to be a conversation piece.

Check out more knives in the series after the break…

[click to continue…]


To honor the character known as Kirimi-chan, whose head is a giant piece of salmon, Japanese companies Pucco and Sanrio teamed up to create salted-salmon chewy candy. The limited edition offering features a gray color to mimic salmon skin and the addition of salmon flakes to its center. But rather than acting as a ipecac, the candy has been described as having an orange flavor and only “hints of fish”, while others described it as sweet and mild.

Whatever the case, most purchases will most likely be the result of curiosity rather than any sort of appetizing appeal.

Check out the equally weird promotional video after the break…

[click to continue…]

attack on titan hot dogs

The Titans might not have wieners, but you can still enjoy an Attack on Titan hot dog in the theater if you don’t think too much about it. The hot dogs will be on sale at Aeon cinemas in Japan ahead of the movie’s debut. Diners can choose from honey mustard which goes on sale this week or relish and ketchup which comes out in September. Both are ¥550 or about $4.48 and come in Attack on Titan boxes.

See Also: New Attack On Titan Trailer Is Loaded With Maneuver Gear Mayhem

See another picture after the break.

[click to continue…]