ZenPop Ramen + Sweets Mix Pack Review – November 2018
ZenPop Ramen + Sweets Mix Pack is a monthly subscription service from ZenMarket that sends popular and unique Japanese noodles and snacks handpicked by their staff in Japan.
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.)
About ZenPop Ramen + Sweets Mix Pack
The Subscription Box: ZenPop Ramen + Sweets Mix Pack
The Cost: $24.50/one-time purchase (save with longer commitments).
The Products: 2-3 bowls of noodles, 6-10 Japanese sweets + snacks
Ships to: Worldwide for free!
ZenPop Ramen + Sweets Mix Pack “Green Goodness” Review
Every box begins with a nice thank-you note from the creators, as well as a coupon!
Each box also features an info sheet that explains special instructions, ingredients, and common allergy warnings for food items.
Shall we begin our almost healthy adventure?
Vegetable Curry Ramen – Buy a 12-pack for $38.77 (£30.63)
The info sheet told me this cup was based on Japan’s famous CoCo curry restaurant, and I can see why! The picture above shows the broth powder before I add water into it. The curry broth had a nice kick of spice—I loved how the noodles soaked up the broth and paired very well.
I mixed rice with the remaining soup and ooh… it was so good! I’m a fan of Japanese curry rice, which is curry sauce poured partially over steaming white rice. It’s so, SO tasty, and this soup was perfect to make curry rice with leftovers.
Vegetable Tan-men (タンメン) is a type of ramen soup noodle flavored with vegetable broth and topped with stir-fried vegetables. This bowl required boiling the noodles and dried vegetables first to get that amazing veggie flavor.
After waiting for the dried parts to soften, I added the broth powder and stirred. The broth was a touch salty, but I enjoyed the strong flavor of corn and miso.
Melon Soda Sours – Retail Value $2.50
After experiencing so many of Japan’s sour flavors, I was prepared for a strong tang. Surprisingly, the sourness was almost undetectable! But wow, that melon flavor? When you open the bag, it’s like cracking open a honeydew melon and eating a scoop of the middle (sweetest) part. These gummies were also very hard, and I later found out these SOURS gummies are known for their strong flavor and hardness. It was fun to chew, though!
Ooh, I loved these! These are like Pocky – chocolate coating + savory powder. For the vegetable theme, we have tomato flavored Pretz! These gave me salad aftertaste vibes (?!) If you’ve ever tried Panera’s Asian sesame salad, the fried wonton strips, they taste exactly like the Pretz. I went through these fast—but there were two
CRATZ Edamame – Retail Value $2.50
I’m not much of a beer person, but I passed this on to my dad to try. You know those small snacks that pair well with beer (like wine + cheese platter)?? These were apparently perfect with a cold glass! It’s salty, dense, and has a strong edamame flavor. Paired with roasted + salted almonds? Even better.
Calbee Saya Snow Pea Crisps – Retail Value $1.49
Snow pea crisps are a familiar snack I’m a fan of, but these were salted a bit heavier than those I’ve tried (which made it 10x better). They weren’t very oily and had a nice, almost fluffy snap when I ate them.
Sakusaku Panda Strawberry Cookies – Retail Value $2.99
Oh! These are from October Bokksu’s curation, except in a white-dark chocolate flavor. These panda cookies are so cute—the faces are all emoji faces! The strawberry chocolate was a wonderful tart flavor, unlike the artificial pink flavors. (Plus, points for cute packaging! I love that metallic pink!)
Sapporo Potato Tsubu Tsubu Vegetable – Retail Value $2.98
These chips, a glorified version of veggie straws, have seven different types of vegetables and include blocks of veggies for visual enjoyment (tsubu-tsubu is Japanese snack onomatopoeia for clusters of small things or sprinkles!). They were meh. Salty, potato-ish, but not much of a strong vegetable flavor- yes, even colorful veggie cubes included.
Petit Bourbon Matcha Chocolate Cookies – Retail Value $2.48
I’ve never seen cookies packaged this way, and we have to see it more often! These petit shortbread cookies are so cute and come in various flavors. ZenPop gave us the matcha version, which had a wonderful dark and earthy flavor that paired so well with dark chocolate chips. The tray it comes in is perfect for sharing with others.
This pie has a beautiful sugar-glazed, crunchy + flaky pastry portion, and was filled with a soft, semi-sweet chocolate ganache. It was a delight to eat/devour!
The Verdict: This month’s unique vegetable theme was fun to try. My favorite item was the Tomato PRETZ, with their soft, biscuit-like crunch and savory flavor. I was surprised with the vegetable tanmen and its power punch of veggie broth!
To Wrap Up:
December’s Box will be Christmas themed! It’ll be an Xmas Dinner Pack, including a fried chicken ramen for fried chicken eating traditions in Japan on Christmas. Teriyaki chicken potatoes, cranberry chocolates, caramel chocolate balls, and squid gummies add to the pack!
Value Breakdown: For $24.50, you receive 2 bowls of ramen/soup and 8 sweets + snacks, so you’re paying about $2.45 per snack (but free international shipping!)
Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!
What do you think of November’s ZenPop Ramen + Sweets Mix Pack? What did you like best of the veggie harvest season?