Last month I had the pleasure of reviewing a Premium snack box from Tokyo Treat, and I can honestly say it was the most fun I’ve ever had reviewing a box. I mean, is it even possible to not have fun while eating Japanese snacks and candy? When Tokyo Treat was kind enough to offer me another box for review this month, I could not have been more excited!
Tokyo Treat is a monthly food subscription service that sends you snacks and candies directly from Japan. They have three different subscription options: Small ($14.99/month), Regular ($24.99/month), and Premium ($34.99/month). The Small comes with 5-7 candies/snacks, Regular gets everything in the Small plus 3-5 more items including a DIY kit, and the Premium gets everything in the Small and Regular, plus 4-6 more items, a DIY kit, a beverage, and a special item. These prices include shipping, and I’m pretty sure they offer free worldwide shipping–good news for all my non-US friends!! I’ll be reviewing the February Premium box today.
I know I already raved about their adorable new packaging and illustrations in my last review, but it warrants another mention. Seriously, how fun are these?? The box is very sturdy as well. Both boxes that I’ve received looked a little travel-worn upon arrival, but the snacks inside were pristine. Oddly enough, this month I had to actually go to my local post office to pick up this package. Last month they just left it at my doorstep. I’m not sure why there was a difference, but either way I didn’t have to pay any customs fees of any kind.
Each month they include a little booklet about the contents of your box and also some mini articles about Japanese culture. The booklet is meant to be read the traditional Asian way, with the pages opening on the left side and flipping left to right.
It lists everything in your box along with a brief description. I highly recommend keeping this page, since it will give you more information about your snacks and also the pictures are helpful if you’re trying to track down the same item in your grocery store.
Since all Regular and Premium boxes come with at least one DIY kit each month, Tokyo Treat always includes a page of brief instructions with illustrations. The DIY kits themselves only come with Japanese instructions, so I appreciate the translations!
I really like that each booklet contains interesting tidbits about Japanese culture. This month there was a page about the Sapporo Snow Festival, a “Kawaii Monster Cafe” in Harajuku, and chopsticks. If you’re interested in learning about Japan, these are nice little articles that you can learn more about on your own time. I like to read them while munching on my snacks 🙂
Okay, can we take a moment to appreciate how amazing this all looks?
Kiki and Lala Strawberry Crunch
I actually recognize these characters! I used to see them at the Sanrio store back when I lived in California. This packaging makes me feel so nostalgic for my childhood.
It looks and tastes similar to a Rice Krispie’s Treat, except not nearly as sticky and more dense and crunchy. It was also less sweet, though most Asian snacks tend to be less sweet than American snacks in general. I grew up eating cakes and pastries from Chinatown, and my first bite of American chocolate cake was a serious culture shock moment!
Pocky Strawberry Filled Heart Sticks
I’ve had lots and lots of different kinds of Pocky over the years, but this is the first time I have seen heart shaped ones! It’s so festive and perfect for Valentine’s Day! Even though I’m obviously reviewing this in March, subscribers received their box in February. Strawberry Pocky has always been my favorite, so this was a slam dunk. It has little flecks of real strawberry mixed in, which was a nice surprise. I wish I could find more of this version in local stores.
Grain Gummy Jelly Beans
These look just like your regular jelly bean, but have a slightly harder shell and gummier inside. The flavors are also different: apple, grape, muscat, orange, and peach. I’ve always wished for muscat flavor to be adopted here in the US. I mean, we have Moscato wine and it’s delicious and amazing! Why not a candy flavor as well?
Collis Strange Gum
This contained 6 sticks of gum, two of each flavor (lemon, strawberry, and green apple). As you chew, the flavors all turn into a grape flavor. As with most chewing gum, the flavor didn’t last long at all but they were delicious while they did. I’ve also noticed that Asian gum tends to be very soft–perfect for blowing bubbles!
Nagewa Mentai Mayo Flavor
Okay, I was like way too excited to see this in my box. These potato rings are the same as the Habanero ones we got in last month’s box, just in a different flavor. And those Habanero Rings were so addictive! I couldn’t tell what flavor this was by the illustration, but the handy booklet informed me that it’s marinated roe with mayonnaise. Sounds odd, right? But I figure I eat roe and Japanese mayonnaise all the time in my sushi, this might just taste like a sushi flavored chip or something.
And I was totally wrong. These don’t actually taste like anything to me, except slightly salty potato rings. My boyfriend agreed with me and described them as “Original Pringles flavor but so much better”. It has a really great crunch to it, doesn’t taste or feel greasy at all, and you get a rich potato flavor from each ring. They are just so darn good! I took the empty bag to several Asian grocery stores in the area to try and track down some more, but had no luck. Some people on Ebay are selling bags directly from Japan, but with shipping it comes out to about $6.00 for one bag.
Princess’s Lost Treasure Pastry Snack
Cute packaging! Based on the picture, these are meant to be eaten with coffee or tea. Since the pastry was so buttery and soft, it crumbled apart in the mail. But this one small item was literally the only one that suffered any damage whatsoever. All my other snacks are in perfect condition.
Despite being a bit broken up, it still tasted delicious! It has a strawberry flavored jam on the inside, and the crust has a flaky butter cookie taste and texture. This pastry and everything I reviewed before this is included in the Small box ($14.99/month).
String Candy Grape and Muscat
This is the DIY kit that all Regular box subscribers received. It’s a more simple DIY activity than most kits, since the candy is already pre-made. It’s more of a play-with-your-food sort of activity versus creating your own candy.
The pink candy strings are grape flavor and the yellow strings are muscat flavor. You can make whatever shapes and patterns you want, or just eat them one by one.
I braided mine and I think it turned out kind of pretty! The texture of these candy strings feels like bubble gum, except it’s actually candy that you can eat. I was pretty pleased with all the muscat flavored items we got this month!
Fujiya Peko Poco Chocolate Lollipops
I’ve seen these around the grocery store before! They are milk chocolate lollipops in the shape of a classic character’s face. Usually I only see the girl, but since this is a Valentine’s Day box I thought it was cute that they included one with the boy and the girl.
I’m always impressed with the amount of detail that goes on these lollipops. They’re pretty pricey for what they are at my store ($2.99 for 2 lollipops) so I’ve never actually purchased them for myself before. I’m glad I finally got to try one!
Lotte Koume Soft Candy
Another familiar item! I’ve seen these at the store as well, also selling for $2.99. These are soft chews that have the texture of Starbursts. The flavor for this one is umeboshi, or pickled plum. I personally really love the flavor of pickled plum, but I know it’s an acquired taste. These chews are sweet, a little bit sour, and almost have a hint of savory to them. I realize that probably sounds kind of gross but they’re actually quite good. If you get a chance, I would recommend trying it!
Dontaco’s Chili Tacos Flavored Chip
I found it kind of funny that I live in Texas and a box from Japan is sending me taco flavored chips! I was very curious about what the Japanese consider to be “taco flavored”. I was expecting it to be something very different compared to what we have here.
Surprisingly, it tastes just like taco seasoning. The chips look and feel just like a Doritos chip, so I guess because I’m so used to Doritos having a cheese taste that’s what I was expecting on these as well. But there’s no cheese flavor at all, just taco seasoning. Surprisingly tasty! These chips and everything I reviewed before this is included in the Regular box ($24.99/month).
Sweet Red Bean Soup
Red bean soup always reminds me of home, because my parents used to make it for me as a dessert. It’s traditionally served hot, which might be a little disconcerting to the American palette. Since I grew up with this stuff, I found it to be a nice little treat. If anyone out there is hesitant about the idea of a sweet bean soup, I would highly recommend trying red bean ice cream first! It gives you the flavor in a form that you’re already comfortable with. If you like the taste, then move on to the soup.
Kracie’s Mr. Fun Bakery
I love DIY kits and wish we had more of them readily available here. Some of them are surprisingly challenging and require a good amount of dexterity (like this one!), but would also be fun for kids.
This kit has two colored powders that you mix with water to make a sort of thick icing. It also comes with 2 ice cream cones, several wafers, and 1 tart base. You put the icing into the included piping bag and decorate your desserts as you wish. As a finishing touch, add sprinkles!
The packaging even has patterns for you to cut out that can serve as wrappers for your ice cream! This part requires pretty precise cutting skills, so I decided to skip it. Too advanced for me!
Ta-da! My finished ice cream cone. The icing part tastes like vanilla and the cone is an actual cake cone taste and texture. What do you think of my creation?
LOOK Two Types of Strawberry Chocolate
Strawberry and chocolate is such a classic combination, so I knew this was going to be a hit. The packaging is quite luxe on this chocolate. The middle opens up as a flap and each piece of chocolate is pre cut. I’m always really impressed with the amount of care that goes into the presentation in Japanese candy!
I managed to stop eating these long enough to grab a good picture of the center. The chocolate is filled with two types of strawberry filling: one that is creamy and one that has a jelly/jam texture. The end result? Amazingly good chocolates. I’m definitely going to be on the lookout for them when I go shopping!
Good Luck Fortune Chopsticks
This is the “Special Item” that each Premium subscriber receives. Each pair of chopsticks comes with a fortune that is revealed inside the sleeve. Mine was “average good luck”, but I’ll take that over bad luck! I was excited about getting chopsticks, since I use them all the time and can always use a new pair. Also these are pretty cute! The quality is also pretty good, and I can see them getting lots of use in the near future.
If you can’t tell, I totally love Tokyo Treat boxes! I had so much fun trying everything and found the curation to be perfect. I think the love theme for Valentine’s Day was cute and thoughtful, and the balance of sweet and savory snacks meant there was something for everyone. I enjoyed every single item and would totally buy a duplicate box if I could!
I did not include any retail values, since it’s quite difficult to calculate due to the fact that many of these items simply aren’t sold in the US. Some of the products that are available in stores near me are quite pricey, and I think Tokyo Treat does give you a good deal. I’ll reiterate what I said in my last review, because I think it’s still relevant: I know there are various other Japanese snack subscriptions out there, but I think this is the only one that has their headquarters in Japan. Their office is located in Tokyo and Ayumi (the founder) personally sources the snacks.
For me, that holds value in itself because I know that these are authentic snacks that I could not have discovered otherwise. Many of the snacks they send out are limited edition or seasonal. It’s great to know that the products are fresh and not overstock!
I find myself wishing more than ever that there was a way to purchase more snacks! I would love the chance to buy more of my favorites, and I’m sure others feel the same way. Tokyo Treat recently redesigned their website to be more user-friendly, so it seems that they are really striving hard to better serve their customers. I hope in the future we’ll be able to order previously featured snacks directly through Tokyo Treat!