Japan Crate Review
I am super excited to present my review of Japan Crate, a Japanese snack subscription service that delivers the tantalizing tastes of Japan straight to your front door. I love Japanese food and Japanese sweets, and I've been privileged to live in Japan and savour the diverse range of snacks and treats Japan Crate offers, directly from their origin.
In this review, I will share everything you need to know about the Japan Crate subscription service, investigating its value, what's included, and how it operates.
The brainchild of Hank, a Japan-enthusiast who visited Tokyo in early 2014, Japan Crate is driven to share the excitement of Japanese snacks and candy culture with the world. According to the founder, Japan Crate is more than a box subscription but a monthly experience with full-sized goodies.
Japan Crate box includes 18-20 snacks and candies, including sweet and savoury items. Each box includes a drink, and some boxes come with small toys or collectable items. So let's explore what makes Japan Crate so special, and discover how it has managed to satisfy my cravings for these unique and delicious Japanese goodies!
Excited? Order your Japan Crate Right Now! Code: YOUCOULDTRAVEL to save $$$
Much like all other Japan box subscriptions, Japan Crate curates monthly specials with new themes. This is a great way to experience the more of Japan and learn about its culture from the comfort of your own home. My Japan Crate arrived in April and was cherry blossom themed. A great way to experience hanami.
Table of ContentsOpen
My Japan Crate Review
My Japan Crate arrived after about 7 days of checkout. The Japan Crate box aesthetic and colour changes every month, and mine was a beautiful cherry blossom pink to celebrate April in Japan. The items in the box also change every month to ensure you always get different snacks to try.
Same as all other Japanese subscription boxes, you can choose from 1-month, 3-month, 6-month, or 12-month plans. The longer the subscription, the greater the savings.
What I really liked about Japan Crate is that you can score some really cool perks and promo codes. I reached out to the company to get you a really great discount code.
Go to Japan Crate's website. Order your subscription. Apply code: YOUCOULDTRAVEL and get a 15% discount.
Do make sure to check if Japan Crate offers its own perks and discounts too. Occasionally, you can even score a second crate for free or cool new gifts along your crate. This is a good time to mention that, according to Japan Crate, they are the OGs of the Japanese subscription boxes.
Target audience for Japan Crate
Japan Crate is targetted at those who love Japan's alt culture. We're talking about kawaii, manga and anime here. It caters to enthusiasts who are captivated by irresistibly cute snacks that are not only visually appealing but also incredibly delicious. Japan Crate is synonymous with devoted fans of Japan, and trendsetting individuals.
If you love Akihabara, Ikebukuro and can see yourself exploring Harajuku with love, then Japan Crate is for you. Are you up to date with the latest anime and manga collections from Japan? Then Japan Crate was specifically crafted for you, as many of their snacks and treats have really cool editions of snacks with the latest and coolest Japanese characters.
As I mentioned, my Japan Crate was celebrating sakura in Japan, but it still kept its youthful vibe. My box had a fun self - blooming cherry tree (great Japanese souvenir), cute chocolate pens to create my own treats and delicious savoury snacks with Miorine Rembran, the deuteragonist of Mobile Suit Gundam the Witch from Mercury.
What's inside the Japan Crate Box
Each Japan Crate comes with full size Japanese snacks. All boxes come with 18-20 treats and each box has an exclusive Japanese drink. There are always bonus items related to the month Japan Crate celebrates with their boxes. You will also get a booklet to know what's in your box and sometimes, with instructions on how to use certain items.
In my case, for example, I received a cool pack of chocolate pens to create my own treats. In the booklet, I received the Japanese explanations and translations on how to utilise the pens properly.
It's also quite clear that each Japan Crate box is curated with the latest and hottest trends in mind. Japan Crate also collaborates with Japanese partners, so some boxes can get cool treats from Funimation, Crunchyroll, Bandai Namco, Kodansha, Comics and more.
Alright, so what was in my subscription box from Japan Crate?
- Amazake Rice Drink - Introduced in 1974 as a canned beverage, this beloved Morinaga product has remained a cherished option among generations of Japanese consumers. Crafted with carefully selected premium sake lees and kome koji (rice culture), this drink offers a delightful combination of profound and invigorating flavours. The inclusion of koji grains enhances its texture, resulting in an even more delectable experience.
- Ginbis Asparagus Biscuit - A crispy mini biscuit soaked in white chocolate sauce. It was super delicious and addictive at first bite, seriously. The company has its HQ in Tokyo and it first opened its doors for trade 45 years ago.
- Strawberry Mugikko Chocolate - Strawberry Mugikko Chocolate is a delightful confection that combines the flavours of strawberry and chocolate into a delectable treat. The creamy strawberry shell is one of the most delicious I've tried yet. The cream made from Hokkaido cream is enveloped in a gentle blend of cacao milk chocolate, creating a delightful treat.
- Yaokin Strawberry Cream Roll Cake - This is much like a European Swiss roll. It's a mini roll cake filled with strawberry flavoured cream. I would recommend this for a quick dessert after your lunch.
- Grape Soda Gu-mmy Candy - This was tiny but packed with flavour. It was a grape gummy that honestly was devoured in one single bite. It was also one of my favourite items from the box so honestly super sad I didn't get more. For when I visit Japan next, I know exactly what to get from the local konbini.
- Mini Peach Ramune - Retro and delicious. Japan is famous for all its treats and these were so delicious, I basically ate them all in one go. I was familiar with them, so was super excited to get them again in my Japan Crate box.
- Marukawa Bubble Gum - Strawberry flavoured bubble gum. It's tiny but, again, packed with flavour and super delicious. I don't even like chewing gum but enjoyed this. Every bit of gum is tiny in comparison to what we're used here in the West, so careful when you chew on them to not swallow. You can pop the whole pack in your mouth in one go or do it bit by bit, whichever you prefer.
- Coris Whistle Candy - These Japanese sweets bear a resemblance to polo mint candies in shape, but their flavour is infused with ramune, a classic Japanese fizzy beverage akin to lemonade. Each sweet is designed with a tiny hole in the centre, allowing you to whistle through it for added amusement.
- Fruits Doughnuts by Yaokin - This is a chewable candy that comes in different flavours. It's soft and coated in sugar. Expect a gummy that's shaped like a doughnut, but super delicious.
- Petit Donut Biscuit - I'm sensing a doughnut theme here. This was a super tiny treat but delicious nonetheless. It's perfectly bite size and I recommend it alongside a cup of tea or coffee for a pick me up treat.
- Bisco Mini Strawberry Cream - Again, I am very familiar with this treat and loved it so much. It's one of my favourite Japanese biscuits, so was very happy to see it in my box. It's basically a biscuit sandwich with strawberry cream in the middle. It's made by Glico, the same company who has the famous Glico sign in Osaka!
- KitKat - A small special edition Japanese KitKat. My husband has this one and loved it. I'm usually a matcha KitKat fan only, so I'm going to stick to that.
- Yaokin Yaitara Dried Fish Strips - I really liked this savoury snack, a delicious dried strip of fish. You need to give it a bit of a chew, but that's the fun of it. It definitely reminded me of all the cool Japanese konbini dried seafood snacks.
- Maeda 11 Veggies Stick Snacks - These stick snacks are made with 11 different kinds of vegetables including onions, red peppers, parsley, tomatoes, gobo, spinach, pumpkin, carrots, cabbage, moroheiya, and chingen greens. I mean, not going to lie, happy I could enjoy these guilt-free after all the sweets.
- Pocky Strawberry Sprinkle - Give me a full-sized box of Pocky, and I'm happy. I love Pocky so much, and that's a main reason why you'll find me shopping in the Asian stores every week. I normally go for Matcha Pocky (I am obsessed, I know, I know) but these strawberry delights hit a sweet spot.
- Pure Potato Butter & Rock Salt Chips - A delicious and limited thick-cut potato chips that offer an exquisite umami experience. The creamy cultured butter for these potatoes is sourced from Furano City in Hokkaido mixed with French Lorraine rock salt. So, so good!
YBC Aerial Fresh Tomato Flavour Mobile Suit Gundam: The Witch From Mercury - I loved these snacks so much, and it's fair to say that they were my favourite in the box. For fans of The Witch From Mercury anime, these are extra special as well, and I get that. But beyond the fan club here, honestly, these tomato flavoured snacks were incredible. Out of this world good.
- Meiji Kinoko Mushroom DIY Chocolate Kit - Kinoko no Yama Mushroom DIY Chocolate is a unique make-your-own kit from Meiji. It includes everything you need to create cute mushroom-shaped chocolate biscuits in strawberry, white, and milk chocolate flavours. Simply melt the chocolates, fill the moulds, insert the biscuit stalks, refrigerate, and decorate with the provided chocolate pens. It's a fun and delicious way to enjoy handmade chocolates.
- Self-blooming cardboard cherry tree - As part of the fun Japan Crate surprises, I received a mini self-blooming sakura tree. Honestly, I know, I was just as confused. The idea is that the cardboard is soaked in a special substance that makes part of the tree crystallise. The result (after 6 hours or so) is a beautiful sakura tree to be enjoyed on your desk. Such a cute idea from Japan Crate, they brought a little bit of Japan's famous cherry trees for everyone to enjoy.
My favourite Japan Crate Snacks
I loved my Japan Crate box a lot, but overall, there were a few snacks that I gravitated towards more so than others. Of course, this is based on personal preference as well.
If you check above, I received a total of 19 items in my Japan Crate box. As discussed, a mix of sweets, savoury, a drink and what I would class a toy (the self blooming tree).
By far, my favourite treat was the YBC Aerial Fresh Tomato Flavour snack. Those went so fast, my husband and I pretty much ate them all in a record of 60 seconds. Not even joking here. We can't wait to go back to Tokyo to eat more. As I mentioned before it wasn't just the fact that these snacks were in partnership with Mobile Suit Gundam: The Witch From Mercury, but the texture and flavours were so good. Normally, I wouldn't pick a tomato flavoured snack from the shelves but now I know better. Japan Crate, this was amazing!
My husband really liked the Amazake Rice Drink so it deserves to be on the list of favourites, but in my opinion, it was a little too sweet. I think you can tell by now that I tend to like savoury stuff a bit more.
The asparagus mini biscuits were incredible too. I think the name of the snack confused me as I honestly thought they contained asparagus somehow. But apparently it's just the shape of the biscuit which made the company name them asparagus biscuits. Anyway, the version with white chocolate was a triumph.
Finally, loved the Grape Soda Gu-mmy Candy and the Fruits Doughnuts by Yaokin. Both were unbelievable, and I can't really pick a favourite between the two. However, I wish there were part of a much larger pack, as these were very much bite size.
How much does Japan Crate Cost
Japan Crate offers a variety of subscription plans tailored to suit your needs. Of course, the same as with its competitors, when you subscribe for longer periods, you get to save and also receive cool promos!
The best value is the 12-month plan, priced at just $45.79 per month, allowing you to save a total of $49.95.
The popular 6-month plan offers a saving of $18, with a monthly cost of $46.95.
For those seeking a shorter commitment, the 3-month plan saves you $6.00, at $47.95 per month.
The 1-month plan is available for $49.95 per month, but while pricier, it does give you the freedom to try out Tokyo Treat boxes without a long-term commitment.
Regardless of the plan you choose, you can cancel anytime, ensuring a hassle-free experience.
Although Japan Crate's prices may appear higher than those of its competitors, it's important to consider that the cost includes free shipping. Therefore, when factoring in the shipping charges, Japan Crate's prices are comparable to other Japan subscription boxes.
Japan Crate Delivery
Japan Crate generally offers Free Worldwide Shipping! However, there are some areas around the world that require a shipping fee of $9.95. Please fill in your shipping address at checkout to see if you may incur a fee. For UK and USA the shipping was free the last time I checked.
Is the Japan Crate worth it?
Yes, Japan Crate is definitely worth it. While the monthly cost may seem a bit high at $49.95 especially when comparing to its competitors, Japan Crate includes free shipping and convenient delivery. When considering the value in terms of individual items, convenience, free shopping and extra gifts, the overall price turns out to be a reasonable investment.
Subscribe to the Japan Crate and embark on a delightful journey of Japanese flavours. Don't forget your discount code YOUCOULDTRAVEL at checkout! Enjoy!!
Frequently Asked Questions
Is Japan Crate a monthly subscription
Yes, Japan Crate is a monthly subscription service. Subscribers receive a box of Japanese snacks and treats delivered to their doorstep on a monthly basis. You can, however, subscribe for 1, 3 6 or 12 months and cancel anytime, hassle-free. Depending on where you order the box from, you will usually get free shipping included in the price of the box.
What is an alternative to Japan Crate
A comparable alternative to Japan Crate is Tokyo Treat. TokyoTreat is also a monthly subscription service that delivers a curated selection of Japanese snacks and treats. It offers a similar experience of exploring and enjoying the flavours of Japan, making it a great alternative for those interested in Japanese snacks and subscription boxes.
What do you think?
Did you like this article? Do you have any questions or suggestions?
Leave a comment below.