When it comes to fast food restaurants specializing in burgers, no doubt McDonald’s comes to the minds of most people. After all, the brand has managed to market itself successfully all around the world. While McDonald’s in Japan does offer some unique food that is different from what you get in your home country, you may want to switch it up a little sometimes and try burgers from LOTTERIA.
LOTTERIA is a chain of fast food restaurants which was first established in Tokyo, Japan in September 1972. If LOTTERIA sounds familiar to you, it is because the name is inspired by its parent company called LOTTE. LOTTE is a multinational conglomerate which is engaged in diverse industries such as food processing, retail, heavy chemicals, publishing, and entertainment.
LOTTERIA has franchises not only in Japan but also in its neighbor country, South Korea. Besides that, LOTTERIA also has franchises in a few Southeast Asian countries like Myanmar, Indonesia, Cambodia, and Vietnam. One has to wonder when LOTTERIA would have franchises in Singapore, Malaysia, and Thailand. The success of the expansion of LOTTERIA to other countries is attributed to its similarity with McDonald’s.
Other than burgers, LOTTERIA also offers other food on its menu, such as fried potatoes, chicken fingers, fried chicken, and chicken wings, which is typical of Western fast food franchises. Apart from those fried foods, LOTTERIA in Japan also sells fresh sandwiches and desserts such as apple pies and crepes. Among the best-selling food at LOTTERIA Japan are hamburgers, teriyaki burgers, and cheeseburgers, with the premium cheeseburger being the best. In 1977, LOTTERIA came out with a shrimp burger which was so popular that McDonald’s and MOS Burger followed suit.
In 2013, LOTTERIA came up with the idea of a burger with everything on it. The burger in question was rereleased in April 2016. It is named “Zenbu Nose Burger,” which carries the meaning of “burger with everything on it.” (For a while there, I thought “Nose” meant the nose in English.)
This gigantic burger is a dream for those who are huge fans of burgers with a lot of patties in it such as beef patty, fried shrimp patty, rib patty, and a second beef patty with cheese. The Zenbu Nose Burger is probably best to share between 2 or more people! This towering burger was priced at 1,350 yen and was only available for a brief period, from 28 April until 31 May 2016.
To remedy your sadness for the lost opportunity to sample the Zenbu Nose Burger, you have to realize that spring is coming. And what happens when it’s spring in Japan? New menu items with sakura infusion, of course! This trend is not new in Japan and is constantly done by many food companies, yet we are always still amazed by the limited-edition sakura-themed food and drinks.
LOTTERIA introduces a few menu items to celebrate the coming season but not all of them are sakura-infused. (All of them has a cute tinge of pink, though!)
Sakura Mochi Mochi An Pie (桜もちもちあんパイ)
For those looking for a sakura-flavored food item, you should definitely check out the Sakura Mochi Mochi An Pie which is really affordable at 180 yen. The pie features a sweet red bean paste filling and a fragrant, sakura-flavored crust. The sweet red bean paste is made using red beans sourced from Hokkaido (北海道), so you can be certain that you are getting the good stuff!
Sakura Ebi Tartar Prawn Burger (桜エビタルタルのエビバーガー)
Hungry for more? The Sakura Mochi Mochi An Pie definitely looks too small to fill the tummy. Therefore, LOTTERIA also introduces this Sakura Ebi Tartar Prawn Burger which can be a main meal for you. The burger will be priced at 380 yen.
Sakura ebi is actually a species of shrimp that can mainly be found in Suruga Bay (駿河湾), Shizuoka Prefecture (静岡県). Despite its name, there is no actual cherry blossom infused in the shrimp. The reason that it is called “sakura ebi” is because the dried shrimp will take on a pink hue! The buns in this Sakura Ebi Tartar Prawn Burger, however, contains sakura extract. Sandwiched in between the buns are fried prawn patty and creamy tartar sauce!
The sakura-flavored menu items end there as the Sakura Mochi Mochi An Pie and Sakura Ebi Tartar Prawn Burger are the only offerings on the spring menu that feature the infusion of sakura extract. Do not despair, though, because the other items on the menu look equally delicious and tempting! You may have already predicted this, but what other food ingredient has that tinge of sweet pink similar to sakura-flavored food? The answer is none other than strawberry!
Milk Pudding Strawberry Shake (ミルクプリンのイチゴシェーキ)
Another new product on the menu for spring is the Milk Pudding Strawberry Shake, which will be retailing for 360 yen.
LOTTERIA also introduces beverages with strawberries sourced from Tochigi Prefecture (栃木県), which is known as the number one producer of strawberries in Japan. Due to that reason, Tochigi is dubbed as the “Strawberry Kingdom.”
The strawberry used by LOTTERIA is the Tochiotome (とちおとめ) variety which is a highly popular variant of strawberry in Japan. Tochiotome was developed in 1994 and seeing how it is such a hit in Japan, it makes up about 90% of the strawberry production in Tochigi. The beverages that feature these Tochiotome strawberries as its star ingredient are the Tochiotome Iced Latte (とちおとめラテ [アイス]) and the Strawberry Soda (ストロベリーソーダ). Each one retails for 280 yen.
Not a fan of cold drinks? No worries, LOTTERIA has it all covered for you. There is also a Hot Tochiotome Latte (とちおとめラテ [ホット]), priced at 280 yen, which would be comfortable to sip during the chilly weather.
All these brand new and tempting food and drinks will be available from 15 February to the beginning of April 2017, except for the burger which will be available only until the end of March 2017! Hence, be sure not to miss paying a visit to one of LOTTERIA’s branches during your spring trip in Japan. It will be worth it and the photos of the food and drinks are definitely Instagram worthy, which would make your friends and family turn green with envy!
LOTTERIA Japan Website *Japanese only
There are many branches, but we will introduce one of them here.