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More unusual burgers…

18 Jun

A few years ago, Burger King Japan offered a black burger…even the bread cheese were black!
(Click here to see my post about it).

And then, last year, McDonalds Japan decided to get in the game.
They offered a pink Sakura Teriyaki & Egg Burger in April, and their own black burger in October.

McDonalds Japan's pink 「さくらたまてら」 (Sakura Teryaki & Egg) burger.

McDonalds Japan’s pink 「さくらてりたま」 (Sakura Teriyaki & Egg) burger.

And now, Burger King Japan has decided to offer new, unusually-colored burgers this summer (2015).

From July 3rd (until sometime in August), they will offer two new spicy red sandwiches…even the cheese and buns are red!

The "Aka (Red) Samurai Beef"

The “Aka (Red) Samurai Beef”

The “Aka (Red) Samurai Chicken”

And then, for a limited-time from August 21st, Burger King Japan will offer two new black sandwiches with black cheese and buns…but different from the ones they offered a few years back.

The "Kuro (Black) Shogun" burger with black cheese and eggplants.

The “Kuro (Black) Shogun” burger with black cheese and eggplants.

The “Kuro (Black) Taiso” burger with black cheese and hash-potato.

Customized Kit-Kat

4 Jun

You can design your own original Kit-Kat package with any photograph you like of your family, friends, pet, or whatever, and have that picture on a pack of regular, dark, or green tea Japanese Kit-Kats.

Kit-Kat Japan’s 「チョコラボキットカット」 (“Kit-Kat Chocolate collaboration”) website

Click here to go the Kit-Kat Japan website where you can design and order original Kit-Kat packages (site is in Japanese only).

Shinjuku

31 May

We went to 新宿 (Shinjuku, Tokyo) yesterday.

Saw the giant Godzilla over the Toho Theater building, went to the 45th floor observation platform in 東京都庁 (Tokyo Government Building) to see the sunset over the city skyline.

And then we went to an 居酒屋 (izakaya restaurant).  While we were there, a big earthquake struck near Tokyo. I’ve experienced numerous earthquakes in Japan over the years…but will always hate them!

When we went home, it took longer than usual because, as we feared, the earthquake caused train delays.

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Metal Festivals in Tokyo

26 May

Every October for the past ten years, there is a two-day heavy metal music festival in the Tokyo area called “Loudpark“.

This year it is scheduled for 2015 October 10th (Sat) and October 11th (Sun).

Loudpark heavy metal festival; 2015 Oct 10-11

Loudpark heavy metal festival; 2015 Oct 10-11.

Some of the major bands that are billed to play are: Slayer, Megadeth and Anthrax. Three of the “Big Four“!

And then the following month, there will be another big heavy metal festival in the Tokyo area!
OzzFest Japan is scheduled for 2015 November 21st (Sat) and November 22nd!

OzzFest Japan 2015 will be held on 2015 Nov 21st - 22nd.

OzzFest Japan 2015 will be held on 2015 Nov 21st – 22nd.

Unlike Loudpark, OzzFest doesn’t have a long history in Japan. This will only be the second OzzFest in this country so far.

The first OzzFest Japan ever was held in May of 2013. I went to it with a friend of mine.
(Click here to read my post about it.)

I saw Black Sabbath, among other bands, at OzzFest Japan 2013…and they were initially billed to headline OzzFest Japan 2015, but it’s been changed for whatever reason…Ozzy will still be playing with his solo band instead.

The main acts of OzzFest Japan 2015 will be: Ozzy Osbourne, Black Label Society, KoRn Bullet For My Valentine, and Evanscence.

Gari Gari Kun

15 May

It seems that, because of the internet, a number of people know of the myriad of Kit-Kat flavors in Japan.
Click here to read of the posts I’ve written about them.

But many other products, both Japanese and foreign, are sold in unique flavors in Japan.

For example, Coca-Cola and Pepsi-cola. (Click here to see the posts I’ve written about them.

Also, potato chips, chocolates and other snacks…as well as sandwiches and beverages (besides the colas I’ve mentioned above) come in a variety of flavors here.
Japanese pizza and crepe have unique “only-in-Japan” toppings sometimes.

Maybe I’ll write a blog post about some of those one day.
But today, since the weather is getting warmer, I decided to write about a Japanese ice-pop (or アイスキャンデー (ice candy) as it’s known in Japan) that is very popular here in the summer.

It’s called 「ガリガリ君」 (“Gari-Gari-kun“)

Japanese 「ガリガリ君」 (

Japanese 「ガリガリ君」 (“Gari-Gari-kun”) ice-pop. (This one is “Soda flavor”).

In America, the “Popsicle” brand ice-pop (ice candy) is the most popular…in Japan, it’s “Gari-Gari-Kun“.

And, just like a lot of other snacks here (such as “Kit-Kat“), Gari-Gari-Kun is sold in a wide, diverse variety of flavors.

Here are a few examples:

Tiramisu (Italian dessert)  flavor "Gari-Gari-Kun" ice-pop.

Tiramisu (Italian dessert) flavor “Gari-Gari-Kun” ice-pop.

みかん (Tangerine)  flavor "Gari-Gari-Kun" ice-pop.

みかん (Tangerine) flavor “Gari-Gari-Kun” ice-pop.

Grapefruit flavor "Gari-Gari-Kun" ice-pop.

Grapefruit flavor “Gari-Gari-Kun” ice-pop.

Kyoto trip

6 May

Today is the last day of Golden Week. It’s a series of consecutive holidays in May that are known collectively as “Golden Week”.

We decided to take a two-day trip to Kyoto during Golden Week this year.  So, in early morning of May 4th, we took a fast but comfortable 新幹線 (bullet train) to Kyoto. We stayed in a nice hotel that overlooked 琵琶湖 (Lake Biwa), the largest lake in Japan. And we took the bullet train back to Tokyo in the evening of May 5th.

We had a really good time and got to see many of Kyoto’s famous sites.

Here are some of the photos I took:

We took this 新幹線 (bullet train) to Kyoto from Tokyo on May 4th.

We took this 新幹線 (bullet train) to Kyoto from Tokyo on May 4th.

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View from the bullet train window.

View from the bullet train window.

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Even the local trains were a bit different from Tokyo's.

Even the local trains were a bit different from Tokyo’s.

The famous Fushi-Inari Temple in Kyoto.

The famous Fushi-Inari Temple in Kyoto.

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1000 torii gates at Fushimi-Inari.

1000 torii gates at Fushimi-Inari.

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Wisteria at Byoudou-in

Wisteria at Byoudou-in

The famous Byoudou-in Temple in Kyoto.

The famous Byoudou-in Temple in Kyoto.

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This temple is shown on the backside of the Japanese ¥10 coin.

Kyoto Tower

Kyoto Tower

Our hotel had a lovely view of the largest lake in Japan: 琵琶湖 (Lake Biwa).

Our hotel had a lovely view of the largest lake in Japan: 琵琶湖 (Lake Biwa).

Delicious dinner at our hotel. 近江牛 (O-mi-gyu Beef)!

The second (and final) day of our trip (2015 May 5th), the weather was much nicer!

The second (and final) day of our trip (2015 May 5th), the weather was much nicer!

The famous 嵐山公園 (Arashi-yama Koen) in Kyoto.

The famous 嵐山公園 (Arashi-yama Koen) in Kyoto.

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many people wear kimono in the ancient city of Kyoto.

many people wear kimono in the ancient city of Kyoto.

Tenryuuji Temple

Tenryuuji Temple

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The famous 金閣寺 (Kinkaku-ji) Temple is covered in gold.

The famous 金閣寺 (Kinkaku-ji) Temple is covered in gold.

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6PM on May 5th, 2015 at Kyoto Station to take the bullet train back home in Tokyo.

6PM on May 5th, 2015 at Kyoto Station to take the bullet train back home in Tokyo.

京都駅 (Kyoto Station)...we had a good time!

京都駅 (Kyoto Station)…we had a good time!

Ra-mu-ne

30 Apr

Do you know the Japanese soft drink called 「ラムネ」 (Ramune)?

「ラムネ」 (Ramune)

It’s a 炭酸のソフトドリンク (carbonated soft-drink) in a uniquely shaped glass bottle that is sealed with a glass marble.

It comes in a variety of flavors, but the most common flavor is the original lemon flavor.

Ramune is a very popular drink, especially with young people, in the summertime in Japan. It is sold in many places including summer festivals.

One time I saw a store with a sign that said 「まずいラムネランキング」 (The Worst Ramune Flavors).
The #1 worst flavor on the list was 「キムチラムネ」 (Kimchee Ramune)!

「キムチラムネ」 (Kimchee Ramune)

I bought it just to try it. They weren’t kidding! It was disgusting!

Have you ever tried Ramune?

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