food

We buy Vladimir Putin chocolate from the Red Square Russian shop in Tokyo

8 Comments
By Oona McGee, SoraNews24

It’s easy to come across “Western” or “ethnic” food stores in Japan, but what about those looking for Russian groceries? Many will be surprised to know there’s now a store for that, and it’s located in Tokyo’s upmarket Ginza district.

▼ Aka no Hiroba (“Red Square”) is the bricks-and-mortar branch of import food company Victoria Foods Market, which opened in February 2021

Russian-shop-food-Ja.jpg

Victoria Foods Market specialises in Russian imports, and as soon as you step foot inside the store, you’ll be greeted by shelves upon shelves of exciting, unfamiliar products.

Russian-shop-food-Ja.jpg

Russian-shop-food-Ja.jpg

They also have these Putin chocolate bars in stock, which staff say are incredibly popular. At 20 percent off the usual retail price of 324 yen, we immediately added one to our shopping basket.

Russian-shop-food-Ja.jpg

The store also sells Russian sweets like Shirok, which has become increasingly popular in Japan in recent years. Shirok is a sweet made from cottage cheese, which is coated in chocolate.

▼ These sweets are sold frozen for maximum freshness.

Russian-shop-food-Ja.jpg

Everything looked enticing, so we asked staff to introduce us to their top five recommended items. We already had one of those items, the Putin chocolate, in our basket, so the friendly staff there added four other products for us, and after paying for it all, we took them home for a taste test.

Russian-shop-food-Ja.jpg

First up, we have this gorgeous-looking Chocolate Caviar (529 yen). These smooth, glistening pieces of dark chocolate really did resemble Russian caviar, but cost about a tenth of the price. This product is ideal for gift-giving, as anyone who receives this jar of chocolate will be delighted to see these glorious little pieces.

Russian-shop-food-Ja.jpg

Next up is the Premium Cheese, and the one we bought was the dark chocolate variety (322 yen). These are popular due to the fact that they contain 20-percent milk fat, which is higher than regular cheese on the market, which usually contains around 5-percent milk fat.

▼ Higher fat makes for a creamier product.

Russian-shop-food-Ja.jpg

This was a real treat for the taste buds, melting on the tongue like a super-rich cheesy ice cream, with the crisp chocolate coating adding just the right amount of sweetness. It was somewhat similar to a thick cheesecake as well, although it was a lot denser and heavier, meaning that you wouldn’t be able to eat a lot of these in one sitting.

Moving on to the next sweet, we have the Prague Chocolate Cake (594 yen). This thick, rich morsel of chocolate contains chocolate butter cream, fruit jam and chocolate sponge within its dark chocolate coating. It was a lot sweeter than we’d anticipated, but incredibly decadent and delicious.

Russian-shop-food-Ja.jpg

Next up is a gorgeous pink product called Honey-Souffle Wild Strawberry (1,188 yen). This was the most expensive of the lot, but it promised to deliver a very unique flavour, which staff recommended we try on toast.

Russian-shop-food-Ja.jpg

When we opened the jar, we expected to see pink jam, but the texture was less like jam and more like…souffle! This was due to the fact that it was made with an unheated honey paste, which had been blended with wild strawberries and a small amount of water.

Russian-shop-food-Ja.jpg

▼ When we spread it on hot toast, we were surprised to see it melted with the heat and became a moist paste.

Russian-shop-food-Ja.jpg

We were glad staff had recommended the Honey-Souffle to us, as it was something we’d never seen before, and it tasted fantastic on toast, where the tart fruit and sweet honey flavors melded harmoniously with the hot bread. Staff also say you can drop a spoonful into a cup of tea for some added sweetness.

Last but definitely not least, we have President Putin’s Dark Chocolate (259 yen). Inside the box were two small foil-wrapped chocolate bars, and as we ripped into them we hoped we might see Putin’s face on the chocolate as well, but alas, Putin’s visage was only on the box.

▼ Still, a great souvenir or Christmas stocking-stuffer for unsuspecting friends and family, who’ll enjoy the darkly sweet flavor of the President’s chocolate.

Russian-shop-food-Ja.jpg

So there you have it — five products to introduce you to the sweet taste of Russia, without having to travel all the way there. With travel restrictions in place due to the pandemic, this shop in Ginza really is the next best thing to visiting the real Red Square at the moment.

Store information

Aka no Hiroba / 赤の広場

Address: Tokyo-to, Chuo-ku, Ginza 1-20-14

東京都中央区銀座1-20-14

Hours: 11:00 a.m.-7 p.m. (weekdays); 11 a.m.-6 p.m. (Saturdays)

Closed: Sundays and public holidays

Read more stories from SoraNews24.

-- Want to smell like Vladimir Putin? Splash his essence all over yourself【Video】

-- Ladies and Gentlemen, the comedy stylings of Vladimir Putin 【Video】

-- All-Russian cosplay cafe opens in Tokyo – uniformed girls serve up borscht, pierogi, cute 【Video】

© SoraNews24

©2021 GPlusMedia Inc.

8 Comments
Login to comment

Do they have Vladimir Putin toilet paper? I'd buy that but I'll bet it's so thin your fingers poke through, lol.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

What is the Japanese safety standard for food items sold in Japan, especially foreign foods - e.g. American foods own up to the USDA and other agencies . . . . I would be especially wary of items sold by a country which does not have formal diplomatic relations with Japan .

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

@Jtsnose

Don't worry. Russia does have formal diplomatic relations with Japan.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

I've never understood why Russians in general indulge in such appalling tastelessness. Chocolate with Putin? Totally tacky. The more bolshoi, the better. This is just eye sore, nekulturnyj.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Does the Putin chocolate come with Novichok topping?

6 ( +6 / -0 )

What a cheap way to sell a tacky looking item with Putin's face on it. Does the Russian company that makes this chocolate bar have any connections with the tsar Putin? I wonder

2 ( +2 / -0 )

What, no ogurets? No vareniki? What kind of Russian food store is this? The best Russian food is savoury, not sweet.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@BigYen, I agree. I often shop at an online Russian shop and have found some delicious savories. Their pickles are amazing, especially the pickled tomatoes.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites