WOWBOX is a Japanese snacks and sweets subscription service that offers multiple themed boxes.
Currently, there are four themes in various sizes (Small, Regular, or Large). I'll be reviewing the New & Limited Box, which contains new, limited, or exclusive items that are hot off the shelves from Japan. They also offer a Fun & Tasty Box—the original WOWBOX filled with "all the fun, tasty, and weird treats that Japan is known for," including DIY kits. Their Kawaii & Beauty Box contains kawaii packaged beauty-themed products as well as low-calorie snacks and health-conscious treats. And finally, they offer a Dagashi Box, which is a mini-sized snack box filled with traditional dagashi treats "from a bygone era."
This box was sent to us at no cost for review. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)
This is a review of the large (9-11 items) New & Limited Box, which is $34.99 a month.
The Subscription Box: WOWBOX New & Tasty Box
The Cost: $24.99 per month for a Regular box, $34.99 per month for a Large box with discounts on longer commitments.
LIMITED TIME DEAL: Through today, 4/22, use code EASTER-PROMO to save 15% off your first box!
ACTIVE DEAL: Save 10% off for your first plan
The Products: Japanese snacks and candies curated to one of four themes
Ships to: Worldwide!
Good to know: WOWBOX ships from Japan and accepts PayPal.
Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!
WOWBOX doesn't list its items on its info card. Instead, you can look up the products via their site. At first, I was like "wha?" at this extra step. But I realized that listing things online lets WOWBOX provide nutrition information, too, which is nice to have. Plus, I'm a nerd for website design, and I don't think I've ever seen a subscription box website so sleek and clean as theirs!
Their information about an upcoming NEW box theme, too! I can't wait to see what they think of next.
Koala No March Custard Pudding Flavor - Value $2.50
It seems so weird to me now, but when I was little, my local pharmacy sold Koala cookies like these at their checkout counter. They always seemed so special, exotic, and most of all, adorable! So when these critter cookies show up in a subscription snack box, I'm always delighted.
The box is hexagonal, but the cookies themselves are sealed in a foil bag for freshness. I love the expressive koala faces on the packaging.
The outside of these cookies are thin and crisp, almost like a wafer. Each koala has its own personality, which is my favorite part. The cookies are filled with smooth flavored cream. I'm used to vanilla and chocolate Koala cookies, but these ones are flavored like "custard pudding". To me, the taste was like a sweet salted caramel. I was actually surprised by the complexity of the flavor, which had a deliciously salty, savory note to it that made these cookies really addictive!
Caramel Corn in Rare Cheesecake - Value $2.75
I've received this brand in other subscription boxes, but I've never tried the "rare cheesecake" flavor!
These little corn puffs are sweet, light, and crisp. They have the same savory sweetness as kettle corn, which is one of my favorite snacks here in the states. I didn't notice any cheesecake-ness in these little curls, though. But again, they were so tasty that I didn't mind!
Ninja Snack Fuwamaru in Butter and Soy Sauce - Value $1.36
I LOVE the packaging of this snack. It's so kitschy, colorful, and cool.
I don't know for sure, but I have a hunch that the reason these snacks are named after ninjas is because you can munch on them almost silently. These feathered little twists (WOWBOX says they look like throwing stars, but I'm not seeing it) dissolved pretty quickly in my mouth. I'll admit I was a little bummed—I like my savory, salty snacks to also be crunchy—but the rich, buttery flavor did taste great!
Fruits Saison Banana and Chocolat - Value $2.00?
I really love real bananas. They're one of my favorite snacks, I love them in smoothies, I love them in desserts... But there's something about banana flavors that just rub me the wrong way. Nevertheless, I gave these a taste.
The vanilla-ish outer layer of these bite-sized balls is soft and cake-like with an almost velvety finish. The inside, however, is a banana gummy. Those who've read my reviews before know that gummies are not my favorite, so this snack, unfortunately, was a swing and a miss for me. If you're a banana fan, though, you might enjoy snacking on these. I will say they'd make a great on-the-go treat!
I couldn't find this item online anywhere, so I just took a guess at the value.
Fettuccine Gummy in Honey Lemon - Value $2.50
Again, gummy candy isn't really my bag, but I'll try to do this justice! This is another unique flavor that I haven't seen in a candy before (a cough drop, sure, but not a candy).
These sugar-coated candies are just slightly sour and citrusy sweet. You can eat one string at a time or nibble it down in a bite or two. If you're looking for a different taste than you usually find in gummy candies, these are a neat step outside the norm. I just wish they were hard candies instead of gummies!
Grape & Shuwa Ramune - Value $2.00?
Speaking of hard candies... These hard candies have the same texture as mints, but they come in a fun fruity flavor. I couldn't find this item online, so I estimated the value here.
These candies are grape soda flavored (I like how they're packaged in a grape soda bottle). They were kind of like beefed up versions of the grape-flavored vitamins I used to love as a kid. Which is to say, I loved 'em!
Fit's Apple Pie Gum - Value $2.50
Gum, like gummies, isn't my favorite thing (I know, I seem so boring, don't I?). So for me, the fun of this item was just seeing what this snack stand staple looks like in Japan. I'll have to give it to a friend to get some use out of!
I love the crisp, pink foil wrapping.
The gum was fruity, sweet and lightly cinnamon-flavored. I wish I could give it a better comparison to products in the states, but I just don't buy gum!
Koi Fukami Matcha Pocky - Value $3.61 USD
Matcha and Pocky? The perfect pair! I was so excited when I saw this package in the box. The design of this Pocky box is awesome, too. It looks very sophisticated and classic.
There are two foil packets of Pocky inside the big green box, each with 14 Pocky sticks inside. They're sweet, though not overwhelmingly so, and go great with tea or coffee. The matcha chocolate is a little waxy, but alongside the crunch of the breadstick, it's not super noticeable.
Syokuji To Issyo Ni Jyuroku Cha W - Value $1.00?
I thought this was a juice box when I first saw it. Turns out, this box holds tea! The tea itself is light and barely sweet. My favorite part is that it has the subtle, natural smoky flavor that comes out in gunpowder green teas. It's a refreshing chaser to all of these sweet treats! I couldn't find this unique product online, so I estimated the value.
Haru Potato Ama Uma Sio Aji - Value $1.00?
It's hard to improve on a potato chip. These chips are rippled, which is my favorite, and according to the WOWBOX site, they have an extra pinch of salt on top. Hello, dream snack.
What I didn't expect is that these chips have a hint of sweetness to them, too. It's nothing as big or bold as you'd find in kettle corn, for example. But it does add a unique dimension to what's otherwise a typical chip. I couldn't find this product online, either, so I estimated the value above.
I noticed online that there was supposed to be another item—a mini bag of Snyder's wasabi pretzels—but I didn't get that in my box... I checked with the folks at WOWBOX, and they kindly sent it along! I would've loved to get it with the rest of the snacks in the box, but I didn't mind too much getting it after the fact.
I couldn't find this specific flavor of pretzels online, so I linked to a more traditional Snyder's product to give an idea of value. I'll say that's probably a sign of how rare this flavor is here in the states. This wasabi taste is so powerful. After about 4 pretzels, my eyes were watering and my sinuses felt wide open as if I had just downed a dollop of real wasabi! I had to pace myself in eating these, but boy were they good!
Verdict: I really liked WOWBOX! Some Japanese snack boxes focus on items that are so strange and unique that I can't really dig in and enjoy them. This box, on the other hand, featured items that were new, unique twists on familiar favorites (things like the flavored corn chips, the tea drink, the pretzels, etc.). I felt like I got a lot of mileage out of this box, even though there were items I didn't like so much. There are 11 items in this $34.99 box, which means each one would have a value of around $3.18. Most of the items I could find a price for didn't hit that $3.50 mark (my estimated value was about $22.00 in total). I will say that a lot of these snacks were hard to find online, so most of the value comes from getting a curated box of uncommon products. But I would've loved to have a little more tangible value in there, too!
What do you think about WOWBOX?