If you’re a little bored of the same Pocky and Panda cookie snacks you get from your local oriental store, there’s a company that serves up a new selection of Japanese snacks every month. Snakku tosses in a few of the “popular” snacks you’ll find in a conbini or 100 yen store, but most of the monthly treats that they stuff their boxes with are a bit more special, seasonal, or from generations-owned snack shops all over the country of Japan. They have a bit more of a gourmet edge over most other Japanese snack subscription boxes, and I they impress me more than Bokksu, the mysteriously similar company that is the direct competition.
Just shy of $40, expectations are high. My main disappointment was with slow customer service and very slow shipping. The FAQ said shipping generally took 7-10 days, and after 2 weeks, I was getting a little nervous. I shot a couple emails to the company, but they floated around several days before I got a reply. I get the feeling that Snakku is a one-man-band, so I understand. And since last month, he’s been working on updating some things, including the FAQ. Instead of 7-10 days, it now says 10-15. While my October box was well outside that (a little over 4 weeks), my November box came inside the normal range.
These items are definitely “snack size”, but that’s fine- you get 2 or 3 of each thing. This pumpkin baumkuchen was moist and had legit pumpkin flavor, not the cinnamon spice mixture that passes for “pumpkin spice” flavor without the pumpkin in the US. The “chocolate” was not real chocolate, but the oily candy confection that ended up a bit soft in our warm Florida November weather.
Caramel Pudding Kit Kat, woo hoo! Can’t go wrong with KitKat in the wide array of Japanese flavors. Light caramel flavor with the milky pudding flavor. KitKat Japan has been playing with their pudding flavors a lot- it’s a winner.
A senbei with pumpkiny flavor and salty sweetness. I think there was a tiny bit of pumpkin seeds, too. This was one of my favs, and it was one of the smallest things in the box. I love sweet and salty senbei.
Collon is one of the cheaper snacks, but it’s a fun sweet, crunchy snack. The guide said this was pumpkin, but when I tried it, it talked apple-fruit sweet/tangy. And sure enough, it was apple flavor. Oops.
This month’s box was cracker/senbei-heavy, but I don’t mind. I miss Japanese senbei, not just the boring stuff that makes it too the states, but the variety of things, like this mild wheat-based senbei with pumpkin seeds. Like a cookie and a cracker had a child, and it was delicious.
Rusks- I had never heard of them before I started researching Snakku, but a lot of people have fallen in love. Sweet varieties of toast, usually based on French bread. If you like biscotti, it’s in the same boat, but crispy thin. I didn’t like it as much as I thought I would, but it does have a certain can’t-stop-at-just-one quality to it.
Did I mention senbei? The packaging on this thing is beutiful. The contents are a nice savory mix or distinct flavors like black sesame and mentaiko fish egg and chestnut.
The “caramel corn” was like sweet caramel Cheetos, and I wouldn’t call them special per se, but they fall into the “popular” category. But they are tasty for what they are.
Another senbei, this one slightly sweet. It has chestnuts in the ingredients, amd the flavor was interesting- something a little new for me. I liked these guys for their texture as they melted into slightly sandy particles in my mouth.
That’s about it. .75 kilograms of snacks so slowly savor with tea or coffee. For me, it fed my foodie lusts and my Japan-centric obsession. I’m looking forward to November and December- we’ll see if I resubscribe after that.