Japanese convenience store’s Above and Beyond Series puts our sense of adventure to the test

Combos including sweet beans & chili powder, chocolate and potato make Mr. Sato wonder if he’s just getting too old for this.

As we reported earlier, the discount convenience store Lawson 100 came out with a unique line of baked goods called the Above and Beyond Series as a part of their Value Line (VL) store brand. This series was made up of three seemingly bizarre combinations of ingredients that the store claims taste much better than you’d expect.

When their release date of 17 April rolled around, we sent our ace gourmet reporter Mr. Sato to try them out. And after putting it off for about a week he finally summoned the courage to try them out.

Another reason for his procrastination was the hope that by the time he went to Lawson 100, at least one or two of the kinds would have been sold out. However, when he trudged over to his third-nearest location, the shelves were fully stocked with all the Above and Beyond items. It turned out the demand was far lower than he had hoped.

After buying them there was no turning back, so Mr. Sato headed back to the office to taste them once and for all.

He decided to start with the Pickled Ginger Lovers’ Donut, which is an enclosed ball of fried dough stuffed with a tangy pickled ginger known as beni shoga that is slathered in mayonnaise. He had had mayo and pickled ginger before so he sort of knew how this one would play out.

After cutting into it, he was surprised at how plentiful the ginger and mayo was. It was a good value for only 100 yen (US$0.90).

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