Tuesday, September 09, 2008
Pom Juice Tirol Choco
"10 yen attara Tirol (chiroru) Choco" (if you have 10 yen, you can buy a Tirol Choco)
That's the jingle that many Japanese people have grown up with. On my recent visit to Shikoku in July, I came across an interesting variation of this chocolate, Pom Juice Tirol Choco. Yes, it's a Pom Juice Chocolate! Does the idea of pom juice (made from mikkan, a tangerine-like fruit) chocolate sound crazy? Not to me, I brought back a box of fifty of this delicious bite-sized confection.
For those of you who aren't familiar with it, Tirol Choco is a square-shaped chocolate that came onto market in 1979. At only 10 yen per individually wrapped piece, many Japanese people of a certain age remember singing the jingle and popping one into their mouth. The name Tirol came from Tyrol, a state located in western Austria. The name was chosen for its evocation of theTyrolian, "Sound of Music"-like imagery; green grass-covered, undulating hills under an azure blue sky against a backdrop of the majestic Alpine mountain range. The idea was to associate the enjoyable experience of eating Tirol Choco with a nostalgia for the beauty and simplicity of life in the past.
A surprise awaits those who expect this to be a dark or milk chocolate. It is in fact an apricot-hued "white" chocolate with a Pom Juice jelly center. Not only is this Tirol Choco unusual in its appearance, it also bursts with mikkan flavor. I bought the box of the Pom Juice Tirol Choco to give to friends or our SAKAYA customers, but Rick found it so tasty that he has been depleting the supply by eating one almost every day!