Japanese Snackfood Review: Tabekko Dobutsu Biscuit

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These are what happens when you let PBS and Nabisco brainstorm: Educational animal crackers. Just look at all these animals. You got your Barnum standard cows and sheep and there are monkeys and lions too but wait…rats? Bats? Furseals?

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(No Furseals are pictured here because I ate it. Yum! Yeah, call Greenpeace on my butt because I’m all in favor of seal crunching. Tasty!) Truly, this was the Discovery channel of snacking because there were Horned owls here, not just your standard generic cracker blobby owl but species specific horned owls. Yessir, an education in every bite. Well, unless you happened to find just the head of M or the butt end of R Bear. Moving on!

Lets compare these to animal crackers because I’m doing it anyway and I think everyone has had animal crackers at least once in their lifetime. These crackers? Nothing like them. Well, except for the whole looking like animals part. I think Nabisco ought to take Ginbis’s lead and start labeling their crackers because I’ve spent many a moment holding some blobby something or other and thinking “What kind of animal could this be attempting to represent?” I’ve even had meaningful discussions about the interpretation of animal crackers but these? Piece of cake. Look, it’s a duck. *crunch crunch*

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Also very cool is the handy Japanese/English cracker translation on the back of the package. Now if it only came with a pronunciation guide I’d know 45 more Japanese words. Maybe a verb too…do Japanese people yell at other Japanese people to duck?

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Alright, one whole pea for the packaging and cracker labeling because both rated very high on the “it amuses me” scale.

The biscuits themselves are rather…savory. At least that’s how one of my Guinea Pigs described the taste. They have a wheaty crackerness to them that is something of a cross between a Wheatsworth and perhaps a buttery Ritz. They also have a touch of sweet that is nicely balanced out by a hint of salt plus a most satisfying crunch. It’s a denser crunch than a Ritz, almost like an extremely flat shortbread cookie might have. You know, if you made short bread cookies about half the height of an American animal cracker . Did I mention that these guys were amusingly flat too? Heh. Like someone sat on and then branded some animal crackers. All in all I give the taste and flavor a 3 pea rating so once you factor in the packing and presentation amusement pea, the whole kit and caboodle winds up with a

Rating

of 4 Wasabi Peas out of a possible 5.

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