Monday, March 22, 2010

Caramel Caravan

"Love was always the goal, and my point every step of the way was that nothing is wrong with love, no matter what flavor it comes in."
Ani Difranco 

While on a weekend journey to Hakodate, a southern port city in Hokkaido, I noticed quite a variety of unusual caramel flavors. "Corn caramel? Cantalope caramel?" These boys were just too odd to sit on the shelf. So I quickly snatched up a few of the 18 piece boxes. But as I hopped from one お土産 (omiyage, souvenir) shop to the next, more intoxicating flavors surfaced. "Beer caramel? Wine caramel?" Ranging from 105 to 165 yen, they were too tempting to pass up. I knew Hokkaido, Japan's northern island was known for their caramel, but this was getting ridiculous. After the third round of purchases, my obsessive compulsive spirits overtook my soul and wallet. The goal of relaxing the day away quickly changed to storming every building with a cash register in search of additional caramel specimens. Twenty eight boxes later, I had captured every brand I could find. Though, sadly I've been made aware that more flavors such "Guarana" are hiding out there just waiting to be chewed. But without further ado, I humbly ask you to board the キャラメル キャラバン (Caramel Caravan), as we review 28 varieties of caramel, and rate them on a scale of 1 to 3 stars. Buckle up, it's going to be a sticky ride!

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