Culture · Culture Shock · Japanese Pop Culture · Living in Japan · Pictures

Let Them Eat Cake

I have decided to take part in “National Blogging Post Month.” I am sure some of you have heard about “National Novel Writing Month,” which takes place in November, where one takes a swing at writing a 50,000 word novel over the course of a month. I must admit that I am tempted to give this a shot this coming November as I am constantly sitting at my desk at work with nothing to do because I am “too efficient” (teachers’ words, not mine) at getting my work done. Anyway, back to this national blogging thing. What this means is that I am signing an imaginary agreement that says I will post a blog entry everyday for the month of July. Missed the 1st of the month, so technically I am already behind, but it should be OK since I only just heard about this event today.

Now, don’t expect long-earth-shattering entries everyday or even something that is totally culturally fascinating to those unfamiliar to Japan because those types of entries will not be appearing everyday. However, you can probably expect lots of picture-type updates everyday of something that caught my eye during the day. These might end up being pictures of more Kit Kats as the official Japanese Nestle website made an announcement the seven new Kit Kats will be hitting the market this month (already captured the new ramune flavored Kit Kat, so now I need to hunt down the rest of them). Mostly likely there will be food pictures of either things I made (and I promise to post the recipes too) or places I have eaten at. Actually, a food post will be following my little speech, so you can look forward to that. If there is anything anyone wants to know about Japan or working as an ALT, now is your chance to get some questions out and I can use those questions to hit my daily post goal.

So now, onto the food post.


I mentioned in my entry yesterday that Jun and I had some sweet plans for the evening. Seeing as I am not an overly tanned surfer or hard-core skater, I hope that you assumed that this had something to do with food. The other day a TV program introduced a restaurant called “Sweets Paradise” which is an all-you-can-eat sweets restaurant. The restaurant provides over 30 different types of cakes, 20 different types of drinks, and a selection of hot foods that changes almost every 15 minutes along with a salad bar all for the price of 1450 yen (around $15). Since I have been stressed out recently and sweet things make me feel a little better, Jun suggested that we give the place a try. The closest place to us was in Omiya (about a 30 minute train ride away) so we headed over there and arrived at a very pink restaurant decorated with hundreds of paper stars. When we saw all the cakes, our eyes popped out of our heads because they not only looked beautiful, they also looked delicious. The food looked equally as enticing and there was a self-serve Italian soda bar. Jun took a plate and headed over to the hot foods while I was on cake duty. Once we had full plates, we sat down at our table and began to eat.

the cake buffet
the cake buffet

Now, you know when you eat a cake and you think it tastes really good because there is a nice texture and the flavor is sweet, but after awhile you begin to realize that that’s all there is to the cake, sweetness and a good texture? Well, that is pretty much how every single cake was at this place. If you had not read the labels above each cake, chances are you would have had no idea what you were eating. Jun loves cheesecake, so I made sure to take a piece from each of the cheesecakes present. However, after Jun ate half of each piece of cake I had taken, I asked him if he liked the cheesecake to which he replied, “There was cheesecake?” Cheesecake has a very distinct flavor and to have eaten a cheesecake that bore no resemblance to the cheesecake flavor should be illegal. Jun also likes Tiramisu, so we got a small piece of that, but all it tasted like was cocoa powder on something creamy. Needless to say, the cakes were a little disappointing.

the selection of food Jun and I picked on our first round
the selection of food Jun and I picked on our first round

As we looked around the restaurant we realized that very few people were actually eating the cakes, but were instead eating the food. I must admit that I enjoyed the meat Dorian and some of the pastas were not too bad, but they were not anything spectacular. Still, we had spent the money so we ate until our stomachs were full and filled out the place’s comment card – not good marks at all – and returned home.

We wont be trusting that TV program again in the future. The restaurant was cute, but when I am going to eat all-you-can-eat cake, I want it to be worth all the calories and actually have a taste beyond sweet.


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