So I arrived at Shibuya. My sole purpose of going there was to witness Shibuya crossing, the famed crossway where seas of people collide and everyone comes out unscathed. All the shopping in the area was a bonus.
Before I started walking around the area, I had to feed myself, fast. I was so hungry. I decided to try McDonald’s. Mostly, I stuck to Japanese food whilst in Japan, but there’s some fun in visiting familiar establishments and seeing what twists the country has made.
Teriyaki Burger Set meal. This was 550 yen, if I remember correctly. What is this radioactive looking green drink? I’ll tell you…read on.
See how small this Teriyaki burger is. A little bigger than my palm. I couldn’t get this size at Toronto even if I asked.
What I noticed off the bat:
- They don’t use the word “combo”; they call it “set”.
- Things are smaller
- The only thing that was North American-sized was the fries. The drink and the burger were both 2/3 the size of what I would be served in Toronto. If you’re a grown-ass man or just a anyone with a NA sized appetite, a set will not be enough for you.
- Interesting options for your drink
- Not just Coke, Sprite…they have some stuff that look radioactive green, pink, etc. Don’t be scared and order it. Pretty much everything in Japan tastes good. If you don’t know what it is, just put it in your mouth (Use your judgement when following this advice).
- No ketchup is provided, and none is available for self-serve. If you want ketchup for your fries, you have to ask at the counters.
- A lot of locals killing time alone. They order one drink and just sit there and play with their phone. Even saw one girl putting on her fake eyelashes at her table…Thought she could have handled this in a bathroom. I guess one thing is the same at all the McDonald’s across the world. People go there to do out-of-place stuff.
- Anime characters used for promotions, posters, paper tray mat, etc. I am definitely in the birthplace of anime.
All the cashiers at the McDonald’s near Shibuya crossing were foreigners of brown skin color who spoke English and Japanese fluently. Whilst ordering my set meal, he asked me which drink I wanted, and pointed to the section of the menu with pictures of all the options. I saw a very, very green-colored drink. Naturally, I chose that, not knowing what it was. I was looking forward to finding out when the drink touched my tongue, but the cashier confirmed my order, “Melon Fanta?”, at which point I realized why it was green.
The melon Fanta was delicious. It smelled and tasted like carbonated honeydew melon (and artificial flavoring, but the good kind, you know?). If that was available in Toronto, I’d get it over Coke any day. It’s a popular drink with the locals too, not just some sucker option for the tourists.
The burger was basically the McDonald’s white sauce, teriyaki sauce, iceberg lettuce and patty. It tastes exactly how you’d imagine it. Nothing mind blowing, but still good, thanks to the sweet and salty teriyaki sauce.
I was not full. The fries helped me fill up. I wanted ketchup, but somehow felt ashamed to ask for it. Plus, I was too lazy to go downstairs to ask. Oftentimes, there is little or no seating on the first floor where the cashiers are, you must go upstairs for the dining area.
Get the melon Fanta when you’re at McDonald’s in Japan.