Tea is to Japan what apple pie is to the United States. There are few places around the country where you won’t find tea and even fewer people who don’t consume it at least twice a day. However, the tea here in Japan is not often like the tea that Americans, like myself, are familiar with. They tend to not be as sweet and lack the elaborate flavorings that you might find from a company like Arizona or Sobe. Of course there are always companies trying to boost sales with new and interesting teas that stand out about the rest. This is where Lipton Japan comes into the picture.
Lipton, a tea company that most Americans are probably familiar with, has a decent size presence here in Japan despite focusing only on tea (unlike Coke, Kirin and other brands which also have juices, alcoholic beverages and more). They sell a variety of tea offerings here in Japan including three main types of containers to include cans, PET (plastic) bottles and cartons.
In my household the favorite type of Lipton tea are the ones that come in a carton. They can be purchased for around ¥100 at local grocery or convenience stores and come in a variety of flavors. Like other companies in Japan it is not uncommon to find Lipton playing with different flavors and themes to include the most recent which is known as “Tea’s Travel” where they sample flavors from around the world.
This creative theme took consumers on a journey through places like Turkey with their “Turkey Apricot Tea” and London with their “Orange Marmalade Tea”. They even went to the good ole’ USA with “American Tea Lemonade”. Each tea is unique and features a distinct taste that is different from the next. Unfortunately all are only available for a limited time.
Located in the San A Ginowan Convention City is a small shop called the KALDI Coffee Farm. The name of this shop is slightly misleading. Originally I had thought that with a name like Coffee Farm coupled with the enthusiastic woman serving samples of coffee the main theme of the items in this shop would be . . . you guessed it. . . coffee but this was not the case. I was pleasantly surprised to find that this was not only a place to get fresh gourmet coffee but also a variety of import goods.
There was everything from snacks to wine, noodles to marshmallows flavored like coffee and tea and so much more.
One of the great things about this shop is that they have a variety of very specific items from America (I honestly have no idea how common the items from other parts of the world are in this shop) that you otherwise would not have the ability to find here in Okinawa. This could be your favorite type of maple syrup, arm and hammer baking soda or even fluff. These items are all priced accordingly and in my opinion are not too bad if you don’t have access to them elsewhere on the island.
Although this is a great place to visit it is important to keep in mind that it is small and very crowded. This makes it a place not ideal for carriages or even young children. Even a big purse can be a hassle as you try to navigate the narrow aisles and move around the other customers.
Whether you are looking for a little taste of home or some delicious fresh coffee head over to Ginowan and check out this small shop!
Summer in Japan . . . . . well . . . . kinda sucks. (Especially if you’re in Okinawa!) The beaches are crowded, the streets are packed with traffic from tourists and oh yeah there is enough humidity to make you wonder how the people who live here long term haven’t developed gills. Doesn’t sound very pleasant huh? Well it’s not (I haven’t lied before and I am not going to start now!), but there are some fun things that do happen during the summer that can help keep our mind off the fact that we are living on the surface of the sun.
Back in Bean Town we used to call them “Freebies” but here in Japan they are usually referred to as a “Campaign”. Simply put a campaign is an opportunity for companies to push their product and consumers to get stuff. Sometimes it will be an item which is attached to your bottle of tea at a convenience store and other times it’s a display that looks a little something like this:
As you can see this particular display is featuring Coke-a-Cola* as well as DVD’s. Other displays for various products this summer alone have featured child size backpacks, fans, cookers, oversized beer mugs, drinking glasses, hats, sandals and much much more.
Now, I’m sure you want to get in on this “Campaign” action so let’s talk about how it works. This type of display usually means that you are required to purchase a certain number of items before you are eligible to receive the free item. In this case it’s 4 bottles of Coke product to receive 1 DVD. Take a look at the photo above one more time. See that happy family? If you look just below them you will see that the sign says 4本で１つ this means that when you purchase 4 you can get 1. This might vary depending on the particular campaign but it’s usually about 4 to 6. Now look again and you will see that list of Coke products that you can choose from (Coke, Diet Coke, Fanta, Aquarius and Green Tea). You can’t see it in this image but the other Coke products are off the the right. Now all you have to do is decide what it is you want, put it in your cart, and pick the DVD of your choice. It’s really that simple.
This goes on throughout the year but the summer is the prime time for some awesome stuff!
*No paid endorsement.