The Delicious World of Japanese Doritos

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This weekend I was shopping for snacks. I picked up a bag of corn soup-flavored "Gourmet" Doritos. But that's only the tip of the iceberg.

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Most Doritos in Japan are typical Doritos—"Dorito-flavored," if you will. But, like Kit Kats, Doritos also get an array of interesting flavors in Japan. The vast majority of them are strictly "kikan gentei" (期間限定) or "for a limited time only." But for many flavors, their short run on store sleeves still leaves an impression.

Doritos launched in the U.S. in the mid-1960s, but didn't come to Japan until 1987. The unique flavors aren't exactly brand new, but they certainly became much more noticeable after, say, 2006 or so. In the last few years, the "Gourmet" line of Doritos has added even more taste sensations. Case in point: Hokkaido camembert cheese flavor.

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Or, better yet, anchovy and garlic flavor:

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Typically, only a couple unique flavors are on sale at anyone time. And they are seasonal: limited edition flavors change quarterly.

Here are some of the flavors the snack has received in Japan over the years:

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Shrimp mayonnaise flavor—as in the pizza topping flavor.

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Corn soup flavor.

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German potato flavor.

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Smoked bacon flavor.

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The inevitable wasabi flavor. I believe this also went on sale outside of Japan, no?

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Fried chicken flavor—not Pepsi fried chicken flavor, mind you.

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Coconut curry flavor.

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Korean seaweed (nori) flavor.

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Sausage flavor.

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Sesame salt flavor.

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Steak flavor.

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Mexican BBQ flavor.

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Shame these are not pumpkin flavor, you know?

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The one-two punch of sukiyaki flavor and mushrooms with butter and soy sauce flavor. Both packages read "Autumn Gourmet."

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Pepper bacon flavor.

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Almond cheese flavor.

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Black pepper and salt flavor (with bamboo charcoal added). Aimed at adults, the packaging featured "Tightskun," which is a series of comedy illustrations. And yes, these Doritos were black.

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Caesar salad flavor.

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Shrimp mayonnaise—not the pizza topping version!

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Yakitori or "grilled chicken" flavor.

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Crab mayonnaise flavor—as in the pizza topping!

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Seven types of spices went into this. Seven!

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Citrus yuzu flavor.

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Yakiniku or "grilled meat" flavor. This type of Dorito is harder than your typical chip.

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And here's the "harder" version of wasabi flavor.

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Korean seaweed (nori) and sesame oil flavor.

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Salami flavor.

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Mexican salt. No, The Mexican Salt flavor.

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This is not Evangelion-flavored. It's salt, but not The Mexican Salt.

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Caramel flavor.

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Spicy sausage.

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Teriyaki mayonnaise flavor.

So, how did the "Hokkaido Corn Soup flavor" gourmet Doritos taste? Well, like corn soup powder sprinkled on Doritos—that's not a bad thing. Oh no, it's a very, very good thing.

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The flavor wasn't obviously salty, and it was just the right mix of corn soup powder and Dorito.

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For the purpose of writing this article, my wife and I polished up an entire bag in, I dunno, ten minutes or so. The lengths I must go, huh?

You can see more Japanese Dorito photos in the links below.

Photos: Gigazine, みっちょとのんの雑貨な生活, ぴろきちのブログ, 食べるの大好き。食べモノ大好き。, 食べるの大好き。食べモノ大好き。, アレルギーの子供を守る! 実践!ダニ退治商品レビュー, GRD Films, 家へ帰ろう~KOKORO NOTE~, 『日本食紀行』☆んまいものを探せ!, 私の日記, Hello mee, そんなの関係ね~?, 気分しだいで食べりゃんせ♪, Saranet, メモ代わり, Beeboo, sekiguchikashi, オヤツ食べ, favorite things, 輝けポーラスターの幸せの味SWEETS, なっとう息子&娘のつぶやき, 新宿西口OL徒然草子, momota, Kufu, Aloha, Beeboo, 212_edt, kwatanabe3580, Natalie

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To contact the author of this post, write to bashcraftATkotaku.com or find him on Twitter @Brian_Ashcraft.

Kotaku East is your slice of Asian internet culture, bringing you the latest talking points from Japan, Korea, China and beyond. Tune in every morning from 4am to 8am.

DISCUSSION

Schmaltzed
Schmaltzed

The one that really piqued my interest was the caesar salad flavor. I can only imagine that light tangyness of fake caesar dressing powder sprinkled atop the romano cheese flavored chips. At least, I assume that's how they'd do it. I have no idea where the watery water taste of romaine lettuce would fit.