Orange Injection Candy

Mike GristFood / Drink, Japan

Drugs designed for kids often taste like candy. I remember getting to love the taste of the cold remedy Sudafed, and looking forward to taking it- lovely goopy syrupy sugar. If I could’ve chugged it freestyle, I very well might have (and actually did once, when my sister and I sat under the kitchen table around 6 years old and sampled the delicacies of the medicine cabinet). Now one Japanese candy company has picked up on this trend, turned the tables, and started marketing candy as a drug. The Japanese says- Syringe Water Candy. I saw this delicacy when I …

Japan’s sexy Coca Cola

Mike GristFood / Drink, Japan 5 Comments

It’s not often this site gets sexy. Occasionally you’ll get your dabblings in Coppertone bikini girls or your Girls Generation Cheetos, but never explicitly sexy. Here though we’ll get explicit. We’ll get sexy. If you’re a minor, avert your gaze. Everyone else, buckle up and batten down, cos here we go: Phew, somebody get a dehumidifier in here, it is steaming UP. OK, so maybe that picture is a little deceptive. It looks a lot like a regular convenience store shelf, packed with delicious nutritious soft drinks. From right to left we see Coke, CC Lemon, Oolong tea, and Japanese …

Girl’s Generation Cheetos

Mike GristFood / Drink, Japan, People / Culture 12 Comments

Girls Generation is a big news 9-member pop group from South Korea. They are currently breaking into Japan and other Asian countries in a major way. This can be seen in their cute same-looking legs gracing the covers of many product ads, from cookies to Cheetos. Girls Generation prep for launch. My favorite is probably, um, the leader? 9 different flavors of same though, really. Girls Generation = sexy, young, vibrant. Cheetos= not. Cheetos – serious taste-having cheese. With 1 collectible card. It’s an odd branding exercise. If they’d carved each individual Cheeto into the shape of one of the …

Sweet Tomato Jello

Mike GristFood / Drink, Japan 10 Comments

Tomatoes are the great pretenders; spies who ply both sides of the aisle like double-edged moles in a John le Carre novel. One day they’re cropping up as vegetables, hidden amidst a salad, getting all the juicy low-down on what the peas are really up to with the carrots, and the next they’re in bed (are they gay? bisexual? I didn’t say it here first) with peaches and pomegranates, squeezing out seeds seductively and acting all sweet. Trust the Japanese to capitalize on that. So you think you’re sexy, tomato? Also earthy? Ha ha, f%*k you, into the jello cup …

Japanese Bread Vending Machine

Mike GristFood / Drink, Japan 2 Comments

You can buy a lot of things out of vending machines in Japan. Vast ranges of tiny plastic toys, Calorie Mate snacks, hot drinks, cold drinks, hot soup, cooked food (chicken and chips at motorway services), oxygen canisters (at the top of Mt. Fuji), manga (in train stations), beer, cigarettes. Infamously some machines sell panties. Many are outfitted with cameras to scan ID cards (for beer and tobacco), scanners to read Pasmo and Suica cards for digital payment, and security cameras enabled with direct lines to the police in the event they witness some kind of crime. They also sell …

Pumpkin Pudding Yoghurt Drink

Mike GristFood / Drink, Japan 3 Comments

I had never drunk pumpkin in my life before today. I wonder if anybody else has? If you’ve spent any time in Japan there’s a good chance you’ve eaten a fair bit of it, both savory and sweet. You may have had it in ice cream, you may have had good old Pumpkin Pie (though that’s surely more American), or you may have had Pumpkin Purin. Have you drunk it though? From the front art it’s pretty hard to tell this is a Pumpkin drink, though if you look top right you’ll see the green lid of a pumpkin. The …

Pepsi Mont Blanc

Mike GristFood / Drink, Japan 1 Comment

Pepsi Mont Blanc is the latest in a series of crazy-flavored products in the Japanese soft drink market. Past favorites include- Pepsi Blue Hawaii Pepsi Yoghurt Pepsi Ice Cucumber Pepsi Baobab Pepsi Beefsteak (shiso) Pepsi Beans (azuki) And that’s not even mentioning the Coke products. Mont Blanc is an Italian dessert of whipped cream and chestnuts on a meringue cake or tart. I picked up the drink without really knowing what the dessert was- I guess I never ate many chestnuts growing up in the UK. In Japan though they’re very popular, as ice cream flavors, on cakes, and now …

Friend Bakery

Mike GristFood / Drink, Japan, Japangrish 2 Comments

A tasty nibble I snacked upon in Kyushu- though probably available all over Japan. Just smack your surf-board sleeping friend over the head and bake her into a biscuit.       More Japangrish and J-products than you can shake a stick at.

Kids Beer

Mike GristFood / Drink, Japan 13 Comments

I’ve always said more things should have beer in them. Beer is after all one of the 5 food groups, along with rye, barley, gin, and malt liquor. Sometimes sure the product people get it right, with Beer Candy, Vegetable Beer, and Beer flavored Kit Kats, but I often wish they’d just try a bit harder, go the whole hog, really commit, and inject beer into more of the things that we love. When will we have beer medicine? When will we have beer tobacco? When will we have beer books that are written in beer? Here from the sunny …

Melon Cream Soda

Mike GristFood / Drink, Japan 10 Comments

Sometimes you just need a melon. Here is an example of a time you might need a melon: You’re hungry, and thirsty, and want to eat a melon. That’s the appropriate time. For the rest of the time- let’s enjoy Melon Cream Soda! Melon Cream Soda.