That's right, after a 6-year absence you'll be pleased to know that Burger King is in fact back in Japan. They have one shop setup now in Shinjuku and are planning on opening another shortly in Ikebukuro I think... both Tokyo, but that's where everything in Japan starts so no surprise.
Apparently I just missed them last time as price wars with McD's drove BK out of Japan right before I got to Chiba and my study abroad. This time around though I think they'll be staying for a while.
I actually heard the news of Burger King's triumphant return a few months back when they announced that it and also Krispy Kreme Donuts would be making the venture into the Big Mikan. KK Debuted last December, and much to my (and most likely others' as well) surprise, you will still to this day most likely be waiting at least an hour in line just to get into the place to get your donuts. I seriously don't see why people don't just go to Mister Donuts though as those have been around for years and don't have a wait. I guess they like lines, like it makes you feel more accomplished and adds to the taste or something. Whateva.
Anyway, one thing in particular caught my interest in the article that I'd like to point out:
I dunno how true that really ever was... at least in recent history. But really, you would not believe how much fried food Japanese people eat. Tempura? Fried. Tonkatsu? Yep, fried. Karaage? Fried-a-roni. Korokke? (basically croquettes) Friddly-fried. They even have fried tofu, (Agedofu anyone?) And I bet that whole fried sushi trend that some Koreans started and has spread to the US would do well out here as well. It's like I'm in the Deep South - you dip it in oil and they'll probably eat it. (yes, KFC has a following, but it tastes like chicken tempura to me) Also ramen, one of the most popular foods out here, is basically a bowl of grease and oil with noodles - a bowl at my favorite place up here will grow a layer of greasy skin if you let it sit too long, which is why I ask them to cut out the grease.
Miami-based Burger King is banking on the recent hunger here for greasy and sweet food, and a move away from the healthy, traditional fish-and-rice centered diet.
I'm not complaining as it does taste good, but I'm just trying to point out that the whole image of Japanese food being all rice and fish and health food is a misconception. The food is excellent, but it's not all healthy. Oh just as an aside, Japanese people hate raw celery for some reason - haven't found one person that likes it. And there has been a recent trend, like they're saying. McDonald's now has the Mega Mac (do they have these back home too?) with it's 4 patties and daily allowance of calories all in one wollop, or a double teriyaki burger now if you prefer. Japanese are catching on to the whole eating big thing I guess. If it means the days of anorexic looking girls running around skinny enough that I can see their rib cages are over then ok, but I hope they don't start blimping out like back home. Oh, and it's had a noticeable effect on the sizes of boobs nationwide. I think I did actually hear that the UK is fatter than us though, so that's one thing to be... ok no, there's nothing good about that. The world is fat.
What was I talking about? Oh yeah, yey BK!! Gimme a Whopper with cheese and some scrumptious fries!