Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Where to find Kit Kats

I've been traveling recently and when not doing that I've been gorging myself on all the Easter candy my mom brought me from the States. (I have the best mom ever!) So no reviews at the moment. Sorry!

In the meantime though I'd like to answer a question that I get a lot and that is "where do you get all of these crazy flavored Kit Kats? And more importantly where can I get them?"

The obvious answer is Japan. I live here, way out in the cabbage fields yes, but I still have a 7-11 across the street from my apartment so that's where my search usually starts. If you are lucky enough to also live here then you should start by looking in your neighborhood conbini.

Be aware though that not every convenient store will have each variety of Kit Kat. I've determined that my 7-11 only carries every other special edition Kit Kat so I also check the three conbinis near the train station in the next town over. (I go there once a month or so to meet friends for drinks and to hit up the international food store.) I've gone in one store and found one variety only to visit the next and found a different one. You have to be relentless in your search if you want to try every Kit Kat out there. They certainly don't make it easy.


I usually check the Nestle website to keep track of what I should be looking for. They change flavors every 6 weeks or so, so don't pass up a flavor thinking you will buy it later. A lot of what you see on this blog is already gone.

Regional Special Editions such as the Wasabi Kit Kat, Yuzu Kosho Kit Kat, or the Citrus Blend Kit Kat stick around a little longer and can be bought in the regions they come from, usually in the train station or in shops selling omiyage. Some of them can be purchased online but not all of them. In fact, I'm planning a trip to Sendai in part because I really want the Zunda Kit Kat and the Sakura Kit Kat and they aren't offered anywhere online that I can find.

But what if you don't live in Japan? You can also try crazy Japanese Kit Kats but there's less skulking in conbinis to do. My favorite site to order through is napaJapan. They are pretty good about having up to date Kit Kats and if I really can't find something in the stores then this is my next stop. Their prices are very reasonable and they ship internationally.

I've never ordered from them but the other site that I see recommended a lot is jlist. They have a variety of products from Japan - including recent Kit Kat flavors. You might also try any Asian grocers or international food stores in your area. If they don't offer any then try asking if they could start.

If you are my sister or best friend then you get your Kit Kat fix through me sending Kit Kats through the mail. So if you don't live in Japan but know someone who does then try asking them to send you some. (But not me because all of my extras go to the aforementioned best friend and sister.)

So there you have it. That's where I get my Kit Kats. Where do you get yours? Does anyone have any other suggestions for places to look? Say for example where I can get Zunda Kit Kats without schlepping all the way to Sendai?

16 comments:

  1. You can get regional KitKats at the main train stations in Tokyo, and some airports. It kind of nullifies any specialness of them being regional. You may want to check whatever the biggest transport hub is in your area (for us, it's Tokyo station and in Shinjuku).

    I get mine at conbini, because they're the only ones that carry new releases. Supermarkets tend only to carry plain or white ones.

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  2. Great post! I am one of the lucky ones with a few friends in Japan, but I sometimes order them online anyway because I can't force my friends to go on a KitKat hunt all over Japan. Most of the time, when I mention a new flavor to one of them, they had no idea it existed!

    At least I get to read your reviews of all the flavors I don't get to sample. Thanks for blogging!

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  3. Great post!

    I may have to start ordering some fun Kit Kats online soon!

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  4. Whoohoo for being on the "bringing them home list!". I've convinced a couple co-workers to order on line so thanks for the post.

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  5. I got my zunda kit kat from napajapan actually..

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  6. OK, so more conbini hunting will be scheduled for my next trip to Tokyo! In the meantime, I just tried to Intense Roast Soybean flavour (purchased at Narita T1, at the small shop just before security check) -- and it's quite excellent. It claims "Tokyo Limited" but surely that should be one of the easier regions!

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  7. Orchid64 - Good point. Although they don't have all of them they do have quite a few. I saw several regional varieties in Tokyo Station that weren't strictly from Tokyo. And I could buy the Okinawa special edition in Kyushu. So you just have to keep your eyes peeled when you travel. You never know what you might find where.

    Ebidebby-I'm not surprised about your friends. Most of my Japanese friends have been surprised to find out I have this blog because they had no idea there were so many different kinds. I have a few friends now that keep an eye out for me and let me know when they see new ones.

    Kristin and Erin - I should have some more minis to share with you this summer but definitely hit up napajapan for anything you can't wait for.

    Tasty Japan - they are "currently unavailable" at napajapan and have been for awhile. :-(

    Tom - I've seen that flavor but I've hesitated to buy it since it looks to be the same as the Kinako Kit Kat I've already reviewed. Kinako remains one of my favorite flavors so I might have to go ahead and buy it anyway.

    Thanks everyone for reading and commenting!

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  8. so many flavors i want to try, but napajapan (almost called them napa valley, lol) are all sold out. i discovered that site just yesterday and ordered a bunch of kit kats i want to try. haha. man, so much money spent but it's a lot cheaper than jlist.

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  9. Whew.. that NapaJapan website is really expensive. Jlist is cheaper and gives you discounts if you order in quantity.

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  10. wow, this information really usefull for me, I am searching around many kind variety of kit kat, but only find the original and black chocolate kit kat in Jusco... maybe I should find nearest 7-11 to find another taste of kit kat

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  11. i've been on a mission to find different flavors os kit kats to send back home. after being on the island for over 3 months, i finally was able to find cheese kit kat at Lawson between 75 and 8. i also found flan kit kat at San A on the 8. I'm hoping to find green tea kit kat soon as request by family and friends.

    if anyone has any suggestions where to buy it on the island, please let me know. Thanks!

    Love the blogs!

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  12. Do you know a place where to buy online?

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  13. I am deeply envious -- only read about these crazy flavors online. However, Kit Kat HAS offered dark chocolate and white chocolate as 'special flavors" so maybe they will come around -- I have written them (in the US) and so should you!

    I have looked at napajapan, but honestly -- $4.50 for a single Kit Kat bar???? I do not know what candy bars cost in Japan (maybe you could let us know?) but in the US, a regular Kit Kat costs from 59 cents to maybe $1.15.

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  14. I came back from Japan yesterday and found 7 flavours in Narita Terminal 1 airside.
    They were located in both little souvenir/convenience stores (called Fa-So-La) at both ends of the terminal (one is next to the Duty Free shop). You need to visit both as some flavours can found in one of the shops only.

    Hope it helps, I found orange, strawberry, strawberry+asakusa(!), soy sauce, orange, green tea, wasabi and rapsberry cheesecake (5 Kg worth of Kit Kats, was so proud!)

    Please do pass it on!

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  15. I feel like I've found my people, having been obsessed with Nestle Kit Kats for years and usually being offered the inferior Hershey one, since I live in the states. Have a free afternoon in Tokyo on a very short trip so will be hunting out as many flavors as I can find!

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