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Bullet Train Box Lunch - Ekiben

Posted: 12/13/12


Bullet Train Box Lunch - Ekiben

Restaurant: Japan

Nelson on Nozomi: By being late/ignorant we ended up on the fastest bullet train by mistake. The ekiben as they are called are a type of bento box that you can buy at the train station or on the train itself for longer journeys. We decided to buy them on the train itself and unfortunately we had the last pick and only two choices remained. We were hungry.

They come in a nicely decorated box, that look and feel better than the cheap material it is made from. They all come cold, but also shrink wrapped in plastic and yet more plastic inside with chopsticks included. I'm not sure the name of the one I had, where it was from or what the ingredients were, but it had many many different ingredients and cost ¥1000/$12. On the right are some rolls of rice with a super super sour plum and some pickled vegetables. In top left there some red pepper, shiitake mushrooms, jelly, aged tofu, plum, snow pea and root vegetable. Bottom right had a few different fish balls, salmon, chicken, deep fried fish cake and and yummy fried tofu piece. I like the variety, but in the end I didn't think it was that good overall.

Kitty had a neat design on her box, but it ended up being just a beef bowl (¥1000) with some pickled vegetables, onions, vermicelli knot, egg cake and bamboo shoots. Since it was cold it didn't taste as good as I was expecting.

The most interesting thing is when we arrived in Kyoto, there was a store selling them with all the varieties. Out front they even had a plastic model of each one so that you can preview it. Japan is crazy about plastic food to showcase to potential customers. I suppose it makes it easier on the tourist, but I think Japanese people like to see what they are buying before they commit. I took a quick snap of the ekiben we had bought and although it looks a bit fake, it looked more appetizing than the real thing.

Maybe because we didn't get to choose or they were the least fresh, the ekiben we tried on the Japanese bullet train were not that impressive. And although Taiwan probably copied the idea from the Japanese, the one I had on the Taiwan bullet train was better.

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Categories: Beef,  Fish,  Japanese,  Seafood,  

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