Kansai International Airport is an airport that's said to have never lost a piece of luggage since it opened 22 years ago, and it's the second biggest hub airport in Japan after Narita. Here are 5 delicious Japanese souvenirs that you can buy there.
1. Matcha Purin (Fukujuen)
Japanese purin (custard flan) is popular even overseas. Glico's Pucchin Purin is even registered in the Guinness Book of World Records since it's sold over 51 billion units worldwide. Japan is a country where companies compete ruthlessly and develop delicious purin on a regular basis. The Matcha Purin from Fukujuen, a matcha specialty shop that's been in business since 1790, is so delicious it even impresses Japanese people. The purin itself is matcha flavored but that's not all; instead of caramel sauce it's topped with Uji matcha powder for a superb taste. When you use a spoon to scoop out a bite, the rich matcha flavor fills your mouth. It has a shelf life of 180 days, so it's great as a souvenir. However, since purin is considered a liquid, you can't pack it in your carry on. Please pack it in your checked luggage. 1 unit is 378 JPY (incl. tax). You can buy it at Fukujuen on the 3rd floor of Terminal 1.
2. Mitarashi Komochi (Chidoriya Souke)
The recommended souvenir from wagashi masters Chidoriya Souke, first opened in 1630, is their Mitarashi Komochi. Wagashi are traditional Japanese sweets, often eaten with tea. Chidoriya Souke is famous for their Honchidori Chidori Manjuu and their Marubouro, but this Mitarashi Komochi is a product suitable for being an Osaka specialty. The mochi (rice cake) is made with high-quality Japanese rice, and it is stuffed with mitarashi an, bean paste made with sweet soy sauce. When you eat it, the sweet-salty bean paste melts in your mouth and you're wrapped in bliss. It's so delicious you'll want to eat another! Since they're bite-sized, you can eat them without dirtying your hands. Actually, Chidoriya Souke has a patent for this product! The shelf life is only about 3 days, so it would be good to buy it on the day you leave. It costs 621 JPY (excl. tax) for a box of 12. You can buy it at Chidoriya on the 2nd floor in the Center Block. Why not pick it up as a travel companion?
3. Kyobaamu (Kyoto Meika Otabe)
If you want to try the supreme collaboration of baumkuchen and matcha, you must pick up the Kyoto Meika Otabe by Kyobaamu. It's a popular sweet that's been featured in various Japanese media. The sponge cake is made with soy milk and wheat blended with matcha for a moist, fluffy, soft cake. You'll never forget the way it feels in your mouth. It has a shelf life of about a week, so it would be good to buy it while thinking of your schedule when you return home. The 3.5cm size is 1,166 JPY (incl. tax). You can buy it at Blue Sky in the departures lobby of North Terminal on the 2nd floor. If you want to buy a Japanese-like sweets souvenir, this is one to consider.
4. Mahou no Tsubo Purin (Kobe Frantz)
If you're going to buy a souvenir for people that like sweets, pick up the Mahou no Tsubo Purin from Kobe Frantz. The rich custard purin (flan) and the thick cream has a delicate sweetness and texture. This purin is the number one purin bought through mail-order in Japan, and it's even sold out of 25,000 units in one day. It's often featured in Japanese media. It's one of the most popular sweets in Japan right now! It'll definitely make people happy if they receive it as a souvenir. However, this purin has a shelf life of only two days, so make sure to buy it the day you leave. The purin sold at the airport is frozen. A set of 4 costs 1,560 JPY (incl. tax). You can buy it at the Applause branch on the 2nd floor of Terminal 1.*The shelf life is very short so if you don't buy it right before you leave, please eat it during your trip.*Please be aware that if you have a layover you cannot carry it on board even if it's packed in your checked luggage. If you have a direct flight, then you can bring it inside your suitcase.
5. Butaman (551 Horai)
If you don't want to buy sweets but rather a filling foodstuff as a souvenir, why not pick up a butaman from 551 Horai, a flavor that Japanese people recognize as truly Kansai? It has a simple filling of pork and onions, but it's a very popular product that sells an average of 140,000 units in one day. The springy dough is filled completely with the pork filling, and when you take a bite it's extremely juicy. It's so delicious you'll understand why it's so popular! After you experience this deliciousness for yourself, you'll definitely want to share it with your friends. A set of 2 starts at 340 JPY. You can buy it at 551 Horai on the 2nd floor of Terminal 1. When you buy it let them know you want it as a souvenir so they'll put ice packs in it for you.*The butaman sold in the airport are frozen. They have a shelf life of 5 days in the refrigerator.
It's good to talk about your trip as a kind of souvenir, but bringing food as souvenirs will give your loved ones a pseudo-experience of enjoying Japanese gourmet so they'll definitely be pleased! There are many more delicious souvenirs outside of those presented, so don't forget to look around before you leave for home!
*Please note that the information in this article is from the time of writing or publication and may differ from the latest information.
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