Hooray for a Japanese foodie box! Bokksu is a themed premium monthly box of tasty gourmet snacks and teas straight from Japan.
This month’s theme is Modern Kyoto. You’ll see the menu insert below, but the general idea behind this theme is that it combines the traditional with the modern, as does the city of Kyoto itself.
Here’s some blurb for you:
Bokksu is unlike any other Japanese snack box. We are totally in love with Japanese snacks, which is why it is our mission to craft authentic Japanese gourmet experiences for our Members around the world. We source directly from artisanal producers in Japan, so you won’t find our delicious snacks and teas anywhere else.
Classic Bokksu will take you on a gourmet journey through Japan each month. From Hokkaido white chocolate butter cookies to Kyoto handground matcha to Kyushu mango chiffon cakes, get the experience of tasting authentic Japanese snacks delivered right to your door. Each box comes with:
- 20-25 delicious Japanese snacks and a tea pairing curated around a cultural theme
- Our Tasting Guide that explains the story and flavors of each product in your box
- The option to pause or cancel anytime
- Free shipping worldwide
Payment is made upfront for the subscription period. The price starts at $39 (£29.71) for a month-to-month subscription, and the monthly cost is reduced the longer the subscription! You can find more details here.
The presentation box is delivered in a plain brown shipping box, which isn’t very beautiful. But what’s inside certainly is!
Love that bright orange. It’s a lovely box too, just like those fancy gift boxes.
Open the lid (yes, a proper separate lid) and you get a wonderful first impression.
Attractive packing shred peeking out, and the menu card on top.
The menu leaflet is beautifully designed. You get descriptions of every item, the packaging and the food itself pictured, plus an allergy guide.
I love the graphic layout, it all looks incredibly enticing!
On the back you can read a little bit about what’s behind this month’s theme. I love the snowy photograph too, makes me want to hop on a plane to Japan at once.
Also, remember the smaller blue card with the picture of a cat?
How lovely, a little bonus gift! The neko design is gorgeous.
Now, this is actually a plastic glass, so I wouldn’t put hot tea in it. (I don’t put hot things in plastic.) But it’s very cute, and is just fine for drinks, or hey, how about a scoop of ice cream? Lots of possibilities!
The box is so beautifully packed I feel rather reluctant to mess it up! But i have to, especially because I’m planning on eating what’s inside.
So on we go.
This Sencha and Matcha Blend Tea is not what was listed on the menu, but they helpfully included this little correction slip.
Of everything in this box, these Young Sardine Pepper Senbei were really the only thing I wasn’t quite on board with. It wasn’t so much that I didn’t like the taste, because crunchy and salty are always a good thing in my book. The taste of fish is extremely subtle, more an aftertaste. I love fish to eat, and I adore sashimi. However when I was a child we used to give our cat sardines as a treat, and so to me they are always inextricably linked with cat food.
I can assure you everything else is incredibly delicious, so let’s move on.
This Koto Matcha Milk Rusk is so pretty! OK, it did get a little broken in transit (this box has come all the way from Japan, and I’m sure it’s been kicked a few times on the way) but it doesn’t matter in the least.
Japanese rusk is thinly sliced bread baked dry with sugar. It might not sound very appetizing, but I assure you it is delicious! This one has matcha in it, and tastes wonderful. In fact, I entirely agree with the little note on the packaging. I like eating delicious sweets and I certainly do have a wonderful time doing so!
Matcha & Chocolate Azuki Beans also sound strange, but are incredible. Azuki beans are red mung beans. Forget the image of yogurt-weaving vegetarian wholesomeness that mung beans conjure, these beauties are dipped in white chocolate and covered in matcha powder.
Damn, they’re delicious . Sweet, with just that tiny hint of matcha bitterness. I’m especially pleased that they came in four little separate packs, because there’s no way I’d be able to stop eating halfway thorough a large package of these.
I’m usually dismissive of sandwich cookies, and I especially dislike Bourbon biscuits. Saku Saku Kakao are not like any chocolate sandwich cookies you’ve had before. The outer chocolate cookie is light and crumbly, and the chocolate filling is rich and melting. It tastes of actual chocolate, and they are amazing. The only problem was that I made the mistake of offering them to my Bourbon-loving husband, and I got to taste exactly one bite before they both disappeared.
So pretty! These Kyoyuzen Candy Mix look like tiny pieces of stained glass. They are little sugar candies with different fruit flavours. One of these things that look almost to nice to eat. Usefully, the packaging is resealable, as these are sweet enough that I can’t just scoff down the entire package at once.
Ararezutsumi have a great combination of sweet and savory flavours. The outer layer is a sweet wafer, and inside is a senbei cracker. No sardine this time, just sweet/salty and delicious. I do like the contrast of mixing sweet and savory (I eat Marmite and jam on toast) and these are very tasty.
Another matcha snack here, these are Kyoto Matcha Baumkuchen. Baumkuchen are a type of German cake that is very popular in Japan, and this version includes matcha to give a Japanese twist to this traditional cake. Also, lovely little portions again.
Natural Yeast Bread Matcha is an amazingly light and fluffy cross between a bread roll and a cake. Last month’s box contained the coffee version of this bakery product, and the matcha variety is equally delicious. Looking at it, you would think it has the consistency and weight of a regular bread roll, but it really doesn’t! It looks like bread but the texture is airy and very slightly chewy.
The brand name Day Plus, or D+ refers to the shelf-life, which is apparently at least sixty days! They say preservation is possible without the use of artificial preservatives, and also the inclusion of a little green ‘alcohol pad’, which further maintains the freshness. And my god, it’s true, you would never guess for a second that this was anything other than absolutely freshly baked.
Another sandwich cookie that makes me take back all my preconceptions about sandwich cookies. Yuzu Sandwich Cookies are light and soft on the outside, and the centre is fresh and citrussy.
Yuzu, a type of citrus, is a popular fruit in Asia. Putting it in cookies is genius. I really wish I could find these in the UK. At least I got to have these all to myself, as my husband doesn’t like fruit half as much as he likes chocolate. And I didn’t give him the opportunity to try these, just in case he discovered a taste for yuzu.
Ofu Smoked Crackers are a mixture of crunchy crackers and peanuts. They’re savory and smokey, with the tiniest hint of spice. Much like the Spice Cheese snacks in last month’s box I think these lend themselves to a glass of wine or beer even more than tea!
That’s the lot. I did have a little search through the packing shred in the bottom of the box in the hope I might have missed something, but alas, no.
Here are my thoughts.
Japanese snack boxes are increasing in popularity, and I’ve reviewed and enjoyed plenty of them! They send out a great variety of fun Japanese candy and snacks of the type you would find in a grocery or candy store.
Bokksu is on a whole other level.
I get the impression every single aspect of this box is chosen with incredible care.
The presentation is superb. Every single thing, the box, the tasting guide, the selection ofartisanal products, makes this a truly premium experience.
I really like the theme. They have found a really interesting selection of goodies with a twist, and it feels like it gives a real insight into the creativity and ingenuity of Japanese food.
The little bonus cat glass is incredibly cute, and will be added to my collection of Japanese items I’ve acquired over the years!
Value-wise, I think £30 (or less, depending on the subscription period) is entirely reasonable for a premium box of this quality.
Subscription boxes make superb gifts, and we’re nearly at Christmas! You’ve definitely got time to order a subscription for the foodie in your life, including yourself. This is a truly superior exploration of Japanese taste and culture.
A different version of this review was first published on allsubscriptionboxes.co.uk.