Japan is a country of extremes. In a place where your age determines your rank in a company, not, say your work ethic or fabulous ideas, change is very, VERY hard to come by (you can read more about that matter at our friend's blog here). On the other hand, there have been a few seemingly good ideas infiltrated from beyond or within which Japan has grabbed on and seriously ran with. First it was cars, then electronics, then video-games.
And now it's Kit Kat bars.
Yes, that's right. Kit Kat bars RULE here, baby! The name itself closely resembles the Japanese phrase, "kitto katsu," which students use to wish each other luck on those ever-so-important-and-life-altering exams, and which, therefore, have contributed to the candy's popularity as items of good luck.
But no ordinary chocolate flavor would do in Japan...that would be silly and boring. For the Americans who thought that the introduction of "White Chocolate" Kit Kat bars was innovative, you ain't seen nothin'! Currently, Japan has introduced over EIGHTY flavors of Kit Kats, many of them regional specialties or limited editions. Flavors have ranged from blueberry, apple, and Hokkaido Yubari melon, to roasted buttered corn, green tea, and sweet potato!
This phenomenon can only mean one thing: a new obsession for me! Since my KFC Colonel Sanders statues have been taking a bit of a hiatus from their costumed Colonel Sanders of the Month, I now give you my personal lowdown on monthly (possibly weekly) Japanese Kit Kat flavors, beginning with that ever-popular Japanese dessert, Mochi and Azuki (sweet bean):
The Mochi and Azuki is actually quite good and tastes like the real deal...not too sweet with a light-rice cake aftertaste!
Surprisingly, one of the worst flavors I've had so far was the most "normal" flavored one: Strawberry. With one bite, I was instantly transported back to childhood illnesses and that thick, pink "medicine" that was an obligatory part of every doctor trip:
And the best so far was the most unexpected: Limited Edition Valentine's Lemon! It tasted like a delicious lemon cream pie, and the box folded out into a writable message for your Valentine!
I'm currently on the hunt for the fabled Exotic Kit Kats, with such flavors as Brandy and Orange, and Wine. Follow up post to come...