Try These Premium Japanese Snacks At Your Next Staff Meeting

by Emi Noguchi

Picking snacks for a staff meeting is kind of like being Snack Parent for soccer practice. But instead of slinging orange slices at third graders with low blood sugar, you’re staring down a long conference table where all your colleagues are starting to wilt. Your boss is getting hangry. When you reach into your grocery bag, you have nothing in your hands but empty sandwich bags! You pull them out like tissues from a box, and then—oh! Phew, you just woke up from a snack nightmare. Well, except for the part where you still thought you brought a bag of goodies for your specific workplace.

Whether this is your week in the rotation or Office Food and Beverages is in your job description, there’s no shame in running out of staff meeting snack ideas. Bokksu has you covered! Japan actually has an entire cottage industry for just this scenario. Omiyage, the generally edible and regionally-specific souvenir, is individually wrapped and sold in large quantities to distribute to all one’s friends, family, neighbors, and coworkers. Shop a la cart or in small packs at Bokksu Boutique: each item has a brief description and list of common allergens. Here are a few of our favorites.

a wide variety of Kit Kat flavors. From green tea Kit Kats to regular chocolate Kit Kats

Japanese Kit Kat: Variety Party Box 2020

If you have a big team, the Variety Party Box is an easy one-stop. It comes with a whopping sixty individually-wrapped pieces and eighteen flavors, from Strawberry to Azuki Sandwich. For fans of the “mystery flavor” effect, try the Kit Kat Momiji Manju, named for a mochi-like bun baked in the shape of momiji, or Japanese maple leaf, a treat tied domestically with fall foliage viewing. Another option: “Otona no Amasa Matcha,” the darker “Sweets for Adults” variation of the classic matcha Kit Kat. If everyone still seems curious or peckish, encourage them to try another!

Mochi Puffs so delicious it melts in your mouth

Funwari Meijin Mochi Puffs: Hokkaido Cheese

Here’s the ideal response to your Classifieds ad, “Friendly and Adventurous Office Seeks Something Savory to Share.” Unlike the glutinous and chewy mochi your coworkers may have enjoyed before, these cloudlike puffs melt in your mouth, thanks to their creator Echigo Seika’s patented technology. If your office is located in dairy country, these should be a fascinating textural departure from whatever cheese-based snacking you ordinarily do.

Rich and crunchy senbie, perfect to bring to your next meeting.

Dondon Yaki

If you’re in for a marathon session, this packet of rich, crunchy senbei will keep everyone alert. It’s even named for a booming drum: “don don,” says the thundering taiko. After frying, the senbei are marinated in tonkatsu sauce, the sweeter, thicker cousin of Worchester sauce, with a whole lot of umami (or “the thing that makes food delicious”). If you feel shy about crunching, just roll it around your mouth like a Gobstopper until, impatient for another, you bite. On to the next!

Mini Baked Cheesecake, so rich that any employee would love. Great corporate gift.

Mini Baked Cheesecake

Because it is neither the size nor density of the typical slab of New York-style cheesecake, this mini cheesecake gives you the rush of an otherwise soporific dessert without actually putting anyone to sleep. Moist, fluffy, and flavorful, this cheesecake bite comes individually-wrapped, meaning that you can buy a few extra without worrying about spoilage. You’re more likely to run out...once you try one, these little cakes beg you to take another.

A green tea waffle snack that all your employee's would appreciate.

Kyoto Matcha Waffle Sandwich

This sandwich-style cookie is a delight for the eyes: a muted pistachio-green filling peeks through and laps at the edges of a crisp golden waffle. Take a bite to enjoy the gentle crunch of wafer, two smooth, cool layers of white chocolate and matcha cream. Though its distinctive flavor profile is what makes matcha a beloved ingredient in drinks and pastries, matcha itself is traditionally thick, frothy, and, as mentioned before, rather bitter. It’s this aspect of the matcha cream (sourced from the region where matcha was first developed!) that adds depth to its white chocolate neighbors. It’s a lot to experience in a cookie, but what is a snack good for if it doesn’t allow one to reawaken their senses and be in the moment...even if that moment is in a conference room?

Visit Bokksu Boutique, and you’ll find staff meeting snack ideas for days! Rather than running out for something last-minute and uninspired, why not opt for Bokksu’s corporate snack delivery? You can browse at your own pace, confirm dietary restrictions, and use some executive decision-making to select something to surprise and satiate the people with whom you spend so much of your life. Even if that meeting could have been an email, no one’s going to complain. They may have just found their new favorite snack.

Author Bio

Emi Noguchi is a fiction writer, blogger, and freelance writing instructor, and co-founder of MFA App Review. After studying standard Japanese at Columbia University, she picked up Kansai-ben while living in Osaka and some Awa-ben in her paternal hometown in Tokushima. Emi is a 2020 recipient of the John Weston Award and holds an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Arizona. You can read her work in Essay Daily, The Spectacle, and Fairy Tale Review. Emi is currently writing a novel about diasporic illnesses, art-making, and traditional Japanese puppetry.