Gifts for Foodies

Find all of your gifts this Christmas at Japan Centre, with plenty of gifts for food lovers, kids and even your boss! From beautiful Japanese ceramic kitchenware, authentic Japanese recipe books and also food kits for those just starting out their culinary adventure, we have the perfect gifts for all foodies.

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Japan Centre Cook Boxes and Food Kits

Want to give the gift of cooking but don’t want to overwhelm them? Our cook boxes and food kits come with all of the essential ingredients you need to create Japanese recipes, from okonomiyaki to sushi. Our cook boxes come with instructions on how to make your favourite recipes, all you have to do is add your favourite fresh ingredients and you can cook up a meal for the whole family.

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Cookbooks

For budding new chefs, take a look at our Japanese cook books, from how to create traditional Japanese meals, vegan recipes, cook books all about matcha and bento box lunches for kids to take to school, there’s something for everyone. These cook books are the perfect gift for people who don’t know where to start and would love to learn more.

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Japan Centre Bakery

Whisk your loved ones away to Japan with our delicious Japanese bakery range. From freshly baked melon pans, to sweet and chewy mochi in multiple flavours, give them a tasty experience they will love. Our new Bake at Home range also allows your friends and family to bake Japanese bread from frozen in their own oven, so that they can enjoy the aromas of a true Japanese bakery. We also have beautiful Bundt cakes which can be displayed as a centrepiece on Christmas Day and enjoyed with the whole family.

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Shoryu DIY Kits

Shoryu’s DIY Kits allow you and your family to recreate their popular and delicious ramen at home! With all the ingredients you would need and easy to understand instructions, gift your loved ones a dine out experience without having to dine out. From their popular ramen like Ganso ramen, to their unique Japanese fusion cocktails and famous bao buns, it’ll be a great activity for the whole family.

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Japan Centre DIY Kits

Our range of DIY Kits includes poke bowls, katsu curry, sushi and cookies and include all of the ingredients needed to make your own Japanese meals from scratch. Enjoy family fun this winter by trying new and exciting recipes at home. With clear instructions, they easily explain how to create your dish and experience a taste of Japan without even leaving your house.

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Sake & Alcohol

Christmas celebrations call for alcohol! From quality Japanese whisky, fruity umeshu plum wine, artisan sake and traditional Japanese sakeware, treat your friends and family to a unique bottle and try a taste of Japan. Create unique cocktails or enjoy them neat or on-the-rocks, the choice is yours.

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Ceramics and Speciality Housewares

Gift your foodie friends with beautiful Japanese ceramics for them to present their Japanese cooking in. From adorable Shiba Inu soy sauce dishes to intricately designed sake servers, you’ll find the perfect gift here. Find the perfect Sake cups and match it with a beautiful bottle of artisan sake.

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Gifts for Home

From beautiful incense holders to furoshiki wrapping cloths, find unique homeware gifts here to gift your loved ones with this Christmas. Discover our beautiful origami papers, top rated Japanese skincare and unique Incense holders from Hello Kitty to cute kittens.

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Skincare and Cosmetics

Find some of Japan’s best selling cosmetics items, from DHC moisturisers and face masks to popular makeup products such as brown eyeliner pencils and eyebrow pencils, create a flawless makeup look to attend your events and parties. They also make great stocking fillers!

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Apparel

From beautifully crafted and dainty crane origami earrings to fun Sanrio character socks, find cute and unique items to gift your loved ones this season. What better surprise than to wake up on Christmas day with Gudetama socks!

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Manga and Books

Explore our wide range of manga and books, from Japan Travel Guides to Ghibli art books, the bookworms in your life will truly appreciate this gift. Want to introduce them to Japanese cooking? Take a look at our vast collection of cookbooks, from authentic Japanese meals and fun character sushi to unique vegan meals and books all about matcha.

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Home Decorations and Incense

Find unique gifts to give this Christmas which would be difficult to find anywhere else! From Hello Kitty incense holders to traditional Daruma dolls, our home decorations will beautifully add some Japanese culture to your friends’ and family’s homes. We also have fun character tea towels like Gudetama, and beautiful Japanese artwork to be framed and appreciated on your walls.

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Gifts for Kids

Find unique and fun gifts this Christmas for all of the kids in your life. From beautiful origami paper to keep the little ones intrigued and occupied for hours on end, to traditional Japanese lucky cat coin boxes and fun character stationery, leave them feeling excited about all of their new gifts. Browse our categories from bento lunch boxes, toys, figurines, and our selection of Japanese candy and snacks to add to their stocking fillers and to treat them this holiday season. With adorable gifts for all ages, give them something they’ll appreciate for years on end.

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Bento Lunchtime

Make lunchtime even better with our bento boxes and lunch accessories! From Kokeshi dolls, Sanrio Pompompurin face-shaped bento boxes and more, kids will be even more excited to unwrap their delicious and healthy lunches to fuel them through the school day.

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Origami, Toys and Figurines

Keep the kids occupied this festive season and teach them something new. Learn the art of origami with our intricately designed origami papers, create cute kittens with our felting kits or gift them with a lucky cat coin bank to learn about the value of money and saving their Christmas pocket money.

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Snacks and Sweets

Treat the kids with popular Japanese sweets and candy, from candy dispenser toys to giant Hello Panda snack boxes, to keep them happy and occupied this holiday season.

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Sanrio Hello Kitty & Friends

Find all of Sanrio’s favourite characters from Gudetama to Hello Kitty and gift your little ones a kawaii Sanrio mascot this Christmas. With adorable My Melody hair accessories and Sanrio coin purses, there’s something for everyone.

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Stocking Fillers Under £10

Fill your kid’s stockings with new and exciting little things this Christmas. From fun Japanese sweets like mini burgers and panda cookies, to crafty origami paper to keep them occupied during the holidays, we have compiled our favourite stocking fillers for this year.

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Drinks for The Festive Season

This festive season, why not try something a bit different to the classic British Christmas beverages. Here at Japan Centre, we pride ourselves in selling high quality sake from some of the best sake producers in the world.

Sake can come in many different types of flavours and styles, from sweeter sparkling sake to Yuzu flavoured sake, there’s something for every event. Try our sake in your cocktails too, listed in our Christmas Recipes tab.

We have compiled a list of the best 10 Japanese alcoholic drinks for you to enjoy this festive season, from single bottles of premium sake to gift sets for you to give to your loved ones.

Gekkeikan Utakata Sparkling Sake

A great-tasting sparkling sake for livening up all of your festive parties this winter.

Bring something a little different to your next party with Gekkeikan's Utakata sparkling sake. This fun, light liqueur combines fruity, flowery flavours with light carbonation for clarity and 5% alcohol for a hint of sharpness. Enjoy this liqueur chilled, either by itself or with food.

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Gekkeikan Umeshu Plum Wine

Made with fully ripened plums. The umeshu plum wine in this glass bottle has been made using fully ripened nanko ume plums, which are well known for their peach-like sweet aroma and a flavour completely free of any bitterness. As such, you can rest assured that this plum wine will be deliciously sweet and fragrant. Great as an aperitif or dessert wine, as well as fantastic in cocktails or served on the rocks for a post Christmas dinner treat.

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Katokichibee Shouten Born Junmai Daiginjo Sake

Taste the difference in quality with rice polishing ratio with this fine bottle of junmai daiginjo sake by Katokichibee. Made from the highest quality of Yamadanishiki rice from the special region "A" from Hyogo Prefecture and milled to 38%, this sake has been aged for 2 years in the unpasteurized state under 0 degrees Celsius. The result is a refined sake that's medium-bodied with a satin-like mouthfeel, boasting an elegant aroma of grapefruit at the tail. Enjoy this sake cold or at room temperature.

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Doi Shuzo Kaiun Junmai Ginjo Sake

With its beautiful packaging, present this impressive gift to your friends and family this Christmas. Brewed slowly and at low temperatures using quality 50% polished Yamada Nishiki rice grown in Hyogo prefecture, this sake’s flavour is full-bodied and smooth with a delicate balance of sweetness and acidity, while its fragrance is reminiscent of melon and other sweet fruits. Perfect for lovers of smooth, fruity alcohols.

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Gekkeikan Miyako Shibori Iwaimai Daiginjo Sake

Combining the finest rice grains, natural spring waters from Fushimi and an expert eye for brewing into this premium regional sake, imperial brewers Gekkeikan offers velvety-crisp refreshment in truly elegant Kyoto style. Made 100% from the prefecture's highest-grade "Iwai" sake rice, the delicate quality of these rice grains lends to this sake's wonderfully smooth palate, carefully mixed with mineral-rich water to produce a well-bodied mouthfeel with swelling floral notes. Light to sip but increasingly enjoyable with its pleasantly aromatic, lingering finish, this daiginjo sake is best served chilled, provided in a deep azure bottle that's superb to savour with your favourite chocolate or red bean treat.

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Ishikawa Shuzo Fukii Junmai Sake Gift Set With Ochoko Sake Glass

An elegant sake gift set from Ishikawa Shuzo to give to your loved ones this Christmas.

Brewed at the base of Suzuka mountains near Mie Prefecture, this stylish bottle of Junmai sake benefits from the pure and soft water quality of local underground water. Polished to 65% their size, the rice grains brewed within this Junmai sake offer a pleasant aftertaste of their light and refreshing flavours. Best enjoyed chilled, this sake pairs well with white fish dishes such as mackerel sashimi, whilst also being a richer complement to meat dishes.

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Gekkeikan Horin Junmai Daiginjo Sake

Our most popular daiginjo sake needs to be tasted to be believed. The skilled sake masters at Gekkeikan have taken fresh spring water and two different types of premium sake rice and transformed them into Horin. This sake has a delicate, fruity nose with hints of cantaloupe, honeydew and honeysuckle, as well as a smooth mouth-feel and creamy body, with a long, clean aftertaste containing hints of pear. A quality sake such as this is best served cold with fresh, mild foods.

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Kamomidori Hana Hou Hou Shu Sparkling Sake

Bottle-fermented like traditional champagne for a soft, delicate carbonation, Hou Hou Shu is the first sparkling sake of its kind in Japan. To complement the natural fruity flavour, this sake has been infused with rose hips and hibiscus. Its beautiful rosy colour makes this a fantastic choice for special occasions and romantic dinners!

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Kyoya Shuzo Premium Yuzu Flavoured Gin

Renowned for their high quality, authentic Japanese shochu, Kyoya Shuzo have stepped boldly and successfully into the world of gin. Using their own Kameshizuku sweet potato shochu as a base, this premium yuzu gin is flavoured with yuzu and hyuganatsu citrus fruits, sansho pepper and juniper berries. Their artisanal gin is perfect served straight up with tonic water or mix it in with your favourite cocktails as a refreshing alternative to dry gin.

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Choya Umeshu Plum Aged Wine

Enjoy the rich flavour of the Japanese plum in the finest of wines. The Nanko plum ume that make up this wine is first patiently steeped in 450 ageing tanks. Then the best three batches, aged for at least 3 years, are chosen to create this award-winning blend. Recommended on-the-rocks, with soda, or in cocktails. A perfect treat for the festive season.

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Our Festive Events

Join Our Online Sake Seminar with Gekkeikan

Purchase a bottle of Gekkeikan Horin Junmai Daiginjo Sake and join Gekkeikan's online tasting session this Christmas with your bottle.

Together with Mark Zheng-Garratt, Export Manager of Gekkeikan and sake expert, you will learn about sake itself, the long history of Gekkeikan, and be guided through an appreciation of Horin's distinct aromas and flavours. Finishing with a Q&A and food pairing recommendations, simply order your Gekkeikan Horin here to be invited to a free, unmissable virtual event.

Hailing from Central Scotland, Mark has been living in Kyoto since 2012. With his passion for all things sake, he promotes Gekkeikan’s sake products in around the world as Export Area Manager, and is keen to see even greater recognition of Japan’s national drink. After purchasing your Horin, we will send you a Zoom link on Friday 17 December for the event on Monday 27 December.

• Date: Monday 27 December 2021
• Time: 7:00pm GMT (45 minutes)
• Spaces: Up to 40 people
• Lecturer: Mark Zheng-Garratt

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Find The Perfect Sake to Gift This Christmas

Try our artisan sake at our free sake tastings throughout November and December and find the perfect sake to accompany your Christmas parties and meals or to gift to loved ones!

Free Sake Tastings at Japan Centre Leicester Square

Discover a wide selection of Japanese sake in our flagship store in Leicester Square, surrounded by all things Japanese including ice cream mochi from our own dedicated Mochi Bar upstairs. Closest tubes are Piccadilly Circus and Leicester Square. Try different types of sake from sparkling to yuzu flavoured and find the perfect sake to give to your loved ones, or to take to your festive parties.

Join us on the following dates between 1pm and 6pm:

November

• Friday 12 November
• Saturday 13 November
• Sunday 14 November


• Friday 19 November
• Saturday 20 November
• Sunday 21 November


• Friday 26 November
• Saturday 27 November
• Sunday 28 November

December

• Friday 3 December
• Saturday 4 December
• Sunday 5 December


• Friday 10 December
• Saturday 11 December
• Sunday12 December


• Friday 17 December
• Saturday 18 December
• Sunday 19 December

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Free Sake Tastings at Ichiba Westfield London

Take a look at our large sake collection at Ichiba, the biggest Japanese food hall In Europe. Pick up everything from freshly prepared sushi to classic Japanese snacks and sweets. Try different types of Japanese sake from flavoured to sparkling and find the perfect gift to give to your friends this Christmas. Receive expert advice from a sake sommelier about which sake to drink with what, what sake to gift and what sake to enjoy with friends and family.

Join us on the following dates between 1pm and 6pm:

November

• Friday 12 November
• Saturday 13 November
• Sunday 14 November


• Friday 19 November
• Saturday 20 November
• Sunday 21 November


• Friday 26 November
• Saturday 27 November
• Sunday 28 November

December

• Friday 3 December
• Saturday 4 December
• Sunday 5 December


• Friday 10 December
• Saturday 11 December
• Sunday12 December


• Friday 17 December
• Saturday 18 December
• Sunday 19 December

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Festive Recipes

This Christmas, why not create some unique Japanese meals and treats for your parties and events? From a classic Japanese Christmas cake, to a Matcha Glazed Croquembouche, they’re sure to leave your guests amazed.

Japanese Christmas Cocktails

Try a new kind of Christmas tipple this year with these Japanese Christmas cocktails. Our Japanese Christmas cocktails are quick and easy to prepare, and use Japanese alcohols like sake and shochu for a unique flavour that will leave your dinner guests guessing.

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Christmas Tree Asazuke Cucumber Pickles

A tasty and appealing canapé for your next party. These Christmas Tree Asazuke pickles are tasty, quick to make, and ever so appealing. Add a little Japanese flair to your next holiday with these Asazuke tree shaped pickles.

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Christmas Santa Decorative Bento

Have Santa over for lunch or your next bento meal. Decorative bento, or deko-ben, are bento boxes using various tools and techniques to add some colourful flair and cuteness to your normal lunches. For the Christmas season, why not try making your bento a little more festive for your kids to enjoy. Make Santa, Christmas trees, and other cute shapes for a bento worthy of being a present itself.

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Roast Chicken with Shio Koji

Experience the flavour enhancing and tenderising properties of shio koji first-hand with this succulent roast chicken with shio koji recipe. A dish that is great for Christmas or a Sunday roast, the chicken is coated with shio koji and allowed to marinate overnight, giving the shio koji a chance to work its way into the chicken and convert the tough proteins into amino acids, making the chicken both tastier and more tender. This recipe is easy to follow and guaranteed to impress.

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Japanese Christmas Cake

Get into a slightly different Christmas spirit this year with a Japanese Christmas cake. Utterly distinct from the fruity, boozy density of British Christmas cake, Japanese Christmas cake, or ‘kurisumasu keki,’ is a light sponge cake, covered in a layer of whipped cream and decorated with ripe strawberries. A delicious alternative dessert to serve up on Christmas day, and so easy to make as well.

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Christmas Gugelhupf Cake

A light and airy alternative to heavy Christmas cakes and puddings. A popular sweet treat in northern Europe, we love its distinctive circular shape and how it accompanies a mug of hot, frothy matcha green tea perfectly. Impress your friends and family this yuletide season with our Christmas Gugelhupf recipe.

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Christmas Yuzu Cupcakes with Matcha Frosting

Celebrate Japanese flavours during your next Christmas celebration with these sensational yuzu cupcakes with matcha frosting. The yuzu juice in the cake gives it a unique citrus tang, while the matcha green tea powder in the icing cuts through the sweetness and adds a refreshing, leafy quality. This is a baked treat that is guaranteed to impress.

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Matcha Glazed Croquembouche

Make Christmas extra special with this matcha glazed croquembouche. Sometimes called cream puffs, the profiteroles in this recipe are a welcomed fluffy change when compared to traditional Christmas puds. The matcha glaze adds an extra Japanese taste to the holidays. Not to mention it is perfect for presentation as an edible Christmas tree. Enjoy making this treat for your family.

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