Kizuna Japanese subscription box

Kizuna Japanese subscription box This is a promotional post. We were offered the opportunity to try a new subscription box from Kizuna Box from Japan. Of course we jumped at the chance. We were given the option of two different boxes, Read more

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Japan Candy Box review + giveaway

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review

Kizuna Japanese subscription box

whysojapan Kizuna lifestyle snack subscription box

Kizuna Japanese subscription box

This is a promotional post.

We were offered the opportunity to try a new subscription box from Kizuna Box from Japan. Of course we jumped at the chance. We were given the option of two different boxes, the Kizuna Snack Box or the Kizuna Lifestyle Box. The snack box includes 13-16 traditional and artisanal snacks and beverages, and a couple of lifestyle items. Often the snacks are only available from a particular time of the year and only from certain regions in Japan. The lifestyle box includes 5-6 beautifully made Japanese goods, that may include items such as stationery, ceramics, snacks, cloths and more. The lifestyle box also has a nicely tied in seasonal theme.

The box we chose to go with this time was the Kizuna Lifestyle Box. It sounded more interesting to us, as we have already tried a couple of snack based subscription boxes from Japan before, and this sounded both exciting and intriguing.

The box arrived very fast from Japan to us. It only seemed to take a couple of days, which was a positive thing because no one likes to wait. The subscription box was well packaged and had a very personal and professional feeling to it.

whysojapan Kizuna lifestyle snack subscription box whysojapan Kizuna lifestyle snack subscription box

whysojapan Kizuna lifestyle snack subscription box

On opening the box, the first thing that greeted us was a little booklet, explaining the theme of this month’s box, and giving an in-detail description of everything found within. We received the June 2017 edition, which was influenced by tsuyu – the rainy season, and the ajisai flower – the Hydrangea.

whysojapan Kizuna lifestyle snack subscription box

Mino-yaki Ajisai ceramic bowl

This beautiful Mini-yaki ceramic bowl fearures the Ajisai flowers, coinciding with this month’s theme. The Mino-yaki (Mino ware) originated from the Gifu Prefecture where around 50% of Japanese produced pottery comes from this region.

whysojapan Kizuna lifestyle snack subscription box

whysojapan Kizuna lifestyle snack subscription box

Mino-yaki Ajisai ceramic plate

The Mino-yaki Ajisai ceramic plate is shaped like the Ajisai flowers, and also comes from the Mino province (modern day Gifu Prefecture). The pottery from this area is believed to have started more than 1300 years ago.

While writing this post we discovered that we have previously bought a couple of bowls and plates while in Japan, bearing the stamp from the Mino province, something we would have never known about if it wasn’t for this subscription box giving us information about it.

whysojapan Kizuna lifestyle snack subscription box

whysojapan Kizuna lifestyle snack subscription box

Ajisai hankerchief from Yonagado

Included in this box was this hankerchief, which I can imagine would come to plenty of usages in Japan’s rainy season, even though we found it too beautiful to ever use. The hankerchief is from Yonagadou, which are based in Osaka. They mix traditional and modern Japanese designs into their products.

whysojapan Kizuna lifestyle snack subscription box

whysojapan Kizuna lifestyle snack subscription box

Ajisai document folder from Unsodo

A beautiful plastic folder, featuring the Ajisai flower, from Unsodo, established 1891, who are based in Kyoto. They’re famous for their Japanese woodblock printing technique.

whysojapan Kizuna lifestyle snack subscription box

The Cat Series – Tsuyu Ukiyo-e styled postcard

The post card that is another thing too good to use, pictures a cat sitting inside watching the rain go by, with the Ajisai flowers in the garden outside. The postcard is in the style of Ukiyo-e, an art genre that dates back to the 17th century and is very much about evoking feelings in the viewer.

whysojapan Kizuna lifestyle snack subscription box

KitKat Premium Mint Summer limited edition, Kamakura Ajisai Sandwich cookie and Ito En Instant green tea

This time the lifestyle subscription box also contained a selection of cookies, instant green tea and a limited edition mini KitKat.

whysojapan Kizuna lifestyle snack subscription box

Kizuna Box is currently having worldwide giveaway contests on both their Facebook page and their Instagram account. For the chance to win, check out Kizuna Box on Facebook and Kizuna Box on Instagram. They’re two separate contests so you can enter both to double your chances of winning. The contests are open until June 23, 2017.

If you want to know more about the Kizuna Lifestyle Box and the Kizuna Snack Box, just head over to their site, Kizuna Box | Re:Discovery Japan, where there are plenty of subscription and gift choices to choose between.

whysojapan Kizuna lifestyle snack subscription box

Disclaimer: This product was sent to us for free, but our review is an honest take on the products.

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Posted on by Vega @ whysojapan.com in Food & snacks, Reviews Leave a comment

Japan Candy Box review + giveaway

whysojapan japan candy box japanese sweets subscription box

Japan Candy Box

This is a promotional post.

The Japan Candy Box was kindly sent to us to try and review for Why So Japan. We’ve been wanting to try a Japanese themed box for a long time now and thanks to the people at Japan Candy Box this is the first time we got the opportunity to do so. We are big fans of subscription boxes which lets you explore different products which you might not know otherwise are available on the market. Each subscription box is filled with 8-10 Japanese candies and snacks and the box we received  was the November box. Previous boxes can be viewed on their homepage, japancandybox.com.

At the end of this post enter the free giveaway to win your very own Japan Candy Box!

The box

The box arrived very quickly after it was sent, which surprised us since things that are sent from the other side of the world can take some time to arrive. Once we received the box we were eager to open it. Inside we found the box full to the lid with treats and snacks from our favourite country. It was surprising to find so many things in one box, which made us really happy and looking forward to trying the snacks. It was a good mixture different kinds of snacks and treats.

whysojapan japan candy box japanese sweets subscription box

whysojapan japan candy box japanese sweets subscription box

Candy and snacks reviews

Here’s what we thought of each product. One thing that we liked throughout the box was the cute design.

whysojapan japan candy box japanese sweets subscription box whysojapan japan candy box japanese sweets subscription box

Fuiya Anpanman Biscuits

Every bite sized biscuit features a cute character from Anpanman. The sweet tasting biscuit reminds us of the Marie biscuits.

 

whysojapan japan candy box japanese sweets subscription box whysojapan japan candy box japanese sweets subscription box

Yaokin Christmas Chocolate Stick

A waifer tasting snack with a chocolate coating. Simple and sweet tasting treat, in a cute christmas packaging.

 

whysojapan japan candy box japanese sweets subscription box whysojapan japan candy box japanese sweets subscription box

Fujiya Milky Matcha Green Tea Candies

Each sweet is individually wrapped and comes in a cute box featuring Peko-chan and Hello Kitty. The candy are sweet tasting matcha flavoured treats which we highly enjoyed.

 

whysojapan japan candy box japanese sweets subscription box whysojapan japan candy box japanese sweets subscription box

Pompompurin Pudding Gummies

This has to be our favourite out of the whole box. The package contains small chewable gummies tasting of custard and caramel. It didn’t take us long to finish the entire bag. Absolutely adore Pompompurin from Sanrio.

 

whysojapan japan candy box japanese sweets subscription box whysojapan japan candy box japanese sweets subscription box

Hi-Chew White Soda Chewy Candy

As always with Hi-Chew sweets, a nice chewie texture. A flavour of white soda, if you can imagine. Really enjoyed these!

 

whysojapan japan candy box japanese sweets subscription box whysojapan japan candy box japanese sweets subscription box

Fujiya Anpanman Lollipop

Cute packaging. Wasn’t one of our favourites, but we like the idea of a chocolate lollipop. Tasted a bit artificial to what we are used to. The chocolate reminded us of Kinderegg chocolate.

 

whysojapan japan candy box japanese sweets subscription box whysojapan japan candy box japanese sweets subscription box

Yaokin Christmas Corn Potage Snack Stick

On the first bite it tasted a bit weird, but after that we got used to the taste and really enjoyed it. The puffed corn shaped stick left a savoury and sweet taste in your mouth. Reminded me of Burger King’s French Toast snacks.

 

whysojapan japan candy box japanese sweets subscription box whysojapan japan candy box japanese sweets subscription box

Morinaga Tsum Tsum Chocolate Biscuits

A cute little sweet biscuit with chocolate cream inside, with the added bonus of cute Tsum Tsum characters printed on them. Sweet and cute.

 

whysojapan japan candy box japanese sweets subscription box whysojapan japan candy box japanese sweets subscription box

Lotte Koala March Strawberry Biscuits

We usually buy the Koala biscuits in China Town in London, but this is the first time we’ve tried them with strawberry. Each biscuit has a sweet strawberry filling and a printed koala on them.

 

whysojapan japan candy box japanese sweets subscription box whysojapan japan candy box japanese sweets subscription box

Meiji Mushroom Mountain DIY Kit

This is also one of our favourites. We’ve tried a few of these DIY candy kits before, but this was a new one to us. The instructions were easy to follow and it was a lot of fun making them. A biscuit base and a nice tasting chocolate top. Recommend trying these DIY kits, because they are a lot of fun.

Win the Japan Candy Box!

We really enjoyed reviewing this box. There were a lot of new snacks and treats that we hadn’t tried before and we’ve now got some new favourites. Even though we’ve reviewed each sweet on it’s own, for the whole box we would give it top marks. Perfect thing to give as a present to a friend or for yourself. Now you’ve got the chance to win your very own box! Details below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclaimer: This product was sent to us for free, but our review is an honest take on the products.

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Posted on by Vega @ whysojapan.com in Food & snacks, Reviews Leave a comment

JAPAN – Where tradition meets the future

whysojapan Where tradition meets the future tourism

Japan National Tourism Organization

JNTO in Europe has just started it’s largest ever promotional campaign for inbound tourism from Europe, as a part of the visit Japan project. The tourism organization based in London has launched a site showcasing what Japan has to offer in “tradition and “innovation”.  The JNTO will be promoting Japan in 15 different European countries, including the UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Sweden and more via several media platforms. The campaign showcases Japan through the eyes of Europeans with an interactive site, with it’s main feature being a video that was made by filmmaker Vincent Urban from Germany. Vincent Urban has also made the video “In Japan 2015”, which to date has been viewed on Vincent’s Vimeo channel over 2.2 million times. Check our previous post on his video and other great filmed in Japan by clicking here: http://www.whysojapan.com/videos-filmed-japan/

Where tradition meets the future

The film was shot in 45 different locations in Tokyo, Kyoto, Kumano and Ise – from the modern to the traditional and beyond. The video takes you on a whirlwind journey through the modern sites of arcade centres, Tokyo Skytree and the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation in Tokyo, to the beautiful picturesque scenes of the the Great Buddha of Nara and the unbelievable Sagano Bamboo Forest Road in Kyoto, just to name a few. After watching the interactive video on the site you can click back to all the different parts of the video and read more information about the certain location in the film. I found this to be a great feature, because I’ve now been able to discover more parts of Japan that I want to visit.

whysojapan Where tradition meets the future tourism

The second section to the site is an interview part with people from Europe have been asked questions about Japan and their experiences. The site is available in five different European languages (English, German, French, Italian and Spanish).

whysojapan Where tradition meets the future tourism

I found the whole site to be beautiful. A great read, I loved the interactive video, and even the background music that is played while on the site is lovely. I think that this will be just the start as we look forward to the 2020 Olympics, where Japan is going become more and more in demand.

Visit the site here: http://visitjapan-europe.jnto.go.jp/en/

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Posted on by Paul in Media, Visiting Leave a comment

RocketNews24 – News From Japan

whysojapan rocketnews24
Rocketnews24 Soranews24 – News From Japan

There are few sites that we visit often on the internet, that are to do with or about Japan. RocketNews24 is one of them that we really do love.

RocketNews24 started off as a Japanese written news blog back in 2008. Their news articles are a real mixed bag of news and interesting tip bits from Japan and Asia – with everything from cute animals to the latest J-pop group to hit the scene, and so so much more. You can spend hours and days just clicking from news piece to news piece. It’s really great! You will almost always find something of interest to read on the blog. The best thing with the blog now is that since it has become so popular around the world, they now translate their articles for the English version of Rocketnews24, (Since  2010) so us who can’t speak Japanese don’t have miss out on all their great articles that are posted on a daily basis.

Most of the news are lighthearted, so it’s the opposite to most news outlets with all the doom and gloom, which makes Rocketnews24 a breath of fresh air. If you love all things Japan you have probably already read one of Rocketnews24 articles on one of the many other sites they work with, like Japantoday, Buzzfeed, Gizmodo and more.

The news blog has a couple of different sections on the site. My favourite is the “most popular” category, which can be found near the top to the right hand side.  I love that you can see what was popular last week, last month and even last year. Like I said, it’s easy to end up just clicking from news post to news post.

Next time you’re looking for some fun tip bits on Japan and Asia, head on over to Rocketnews24.

Site: http://en.rocketnews24.com





Posted on by Paul in Reviews Leave a comment

Book review: Confessions of a Texan in Tokyo

whysojapan confessions of a texan in tokyo grace buchele mineta

About the author

whysojapan confessions of a texan in tokyo grace buchele minetaAs we previously wrote in our last book review Grace is Texan that moved to Tokyo to be with her husband Ryosuke. Grace is a self publishing comic book author, freelance writer and YouTuber. If you want to know more about Grace, you can either read our previous post or check her out on YouTube or her blog.

Confessions of a Texan in Tokyo

This is Grace’s third book. We were really looking forward to reading it, as we both are big fans of Grace and Ryosuke, and we enjoyed her two previous books and had high hopes for the third. Thanks to Grace we were able to get our hands on the pre-release version of the book before it was available on Amazon. We both got down to reading it straight away and within a day we had both read it, we couldn’t put it down.

whysojapan confessions of a texan in tokyo grace buchele mineta

The book follows Grace and her day to day adventures in Japan, with her husband and friends, and her imaginary rabbit Marvin. The book is a mixture of comic strips and tip bits of information on all things Japanese. One of the things we really like about the comic strips is that we can actually hear Grace saying the words, which makes it even more funny. The book also shows the cultural differences between a Japanese person and a non Japanese person. The book is both fun and informational, with lots of interesting facts about Japan, on every few pages. One of the fun facts that we didn’t know about before, was that there are shop dedicated to gift wrapping. We’ve always been impressed by our friends that have given us nicely wrapped gifts and now we know next time we are in Japan we can go to a shop and get ours wrapped just as good.

whysojapan confessions of a texan in tokyo grace buchele mineta

Another nice touch in this book was that Ryosuke had two pages with comics that he had drawn himself, which we hope to see more of in the future.

As with the previous books, we highly recommend this new one. Either buy as a hard copy, or as we did, download and read on a tablet. If you buy the book from Grace on Etsy you can get the book signed.

 

whysojapan confessions of a texan in tokyo grace buchele minetaAll books by Grace on Amazon:
http://www.amazon.com/Grace-Buchele-Mineta/e/B00NUJBQAG/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1

Texan in Tokyo on Etsy:
https://www.etsy.com/se-en/shop/TexaninTokyo

Texan in Tokyo website and blog:
http://howibecametexan.com/

 

 

 





Posted on by Vega @ whysojapan.com in Reviews 1 Comment
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