Krispy Kreme is King

May 24, 2007 at 3:44 pm 2 comments

It’s official. Krispy Kreme is big in Japan.

Within the first three days of its opening last December, 10,000 people filed in for these deep-fried doughnuts long-rumored to be the sweetest, fluffiest treats to arrive from America. When I read in the newspaper of the hour-long wait, I was hit with a Tokyo-in-the-‘90s flashback when the fever was for Belgium waffles.

krispy_kreme.jpg

They came out oven-fresh from a kiosk in Shibuya station. The wafting aroma of hot butter and syrup enticed the senses of morning commuters desperate for a quick pick-me-up. But the line only grew longer as word got around, and so one-hour waits became the norm. Women seemed to love it most. The joy of toting a half-dozen waffles around by the handle of a little box trumped any guilty remorse for a missed morning of work.

If Japan is the reigning nation of culinary fads, then American junk food proudly sits on its throne. Cold Stone Creamery, McDonalds, KFC, and now Krispy Kreme. With all the fanfare, some are worried that young Japanese people are heading down the path of over-consumption, much like their American counterparts. Some are worried that a fat, sodium-rich diet will leave a greasy smudge on the country’s healthy reputation. Personally, I think they’ll be fine. Despite current notions in the news, they may be consuming high-calorie foods, but believe me, they eat nowhere near the amount most Americans do. I dropped 10 pounds in Japan simply because I was curbing my intake to Japanese levels.

One thing for sure: Food fads can fade quickly in Japan. I haven’t been back to Shibuya station in a while but I’d bet that waffle shop is long gone. Though, some snacks have luck in finding their way into modern food culture. Fries, pizza, French-style bakeries ― it really depends on how you market yourself.

Start off by fanning out a delicious scent in the air. That should get them running in by the masses.

Himawari

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Entry filed under: Japanese Business, Japanese Foods.

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