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REVIEW: “Santa’s in a Rush” Churro & Lazy Caramel Reindeer Milk Tea Are Filled with Holiday Cheer at Universal Studios Japan

Just in time for Christmas, Universal Studios Japan has introduced two new holiday treats at their NO LIMIT! Market, both ready to satisfy your sweet tooth. So let’s try out the “Santa’s in a Rush” Pistachio & Chocolate Churro and the Lazy Reindeer Caramel Milk Tea!

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Sold in the same Coca-Cola cart as most dessert items are, both are the only items available at the cart.

“Santa’s in a Rush” Chocolate & Pistachio Churritos – ¥650 ($5.69)

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This one’s pretty standard as Universal Studios Japan’s churros go. It’s a thin chocolate churro inexplicably served cold with pistachio cream hidden under plain white whipped cream. The presents are little white chocolates, which is a really cute touch!

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Keeping with the theme, the wrapper shows Santa rushing away, with some holes in his bag revealing the presents on the churro. It’s incredible how thoughtful Universal Studios Japan’s food team is when it comes to design.

But someday, I really hope they master the art of selling fancy seasonal churros hot. The coldness of the churro makes the entire experience as stale as ever. And even though there’s a significant amount of chocolate sprinkles up and down the entire churro, the pistachio flavor is only contained in the top portion. As with most of their churros, get it for the Instagrammability, but don’t expect anything paradigm-shifting from this one. It’s not awful, but certainly not amazing.

Lazy Reindeer Caramel Milk Tea – ¥550 ($4.82)

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There’s not a whole lot to say about the complexity here; it’s hot milk tea with a giant heap of whipped cream on top. Accenting the whipped cream to make this drink true to its name is a pair of milk chocolate antlers and a maraschino cherry (pitted, for once!) for the nose.

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Let’s take a moment to appreciate how cute the cup wrapper is for this, wrapping around to feature the reindeer’s body both as it sleeps in and is awakened for his midnight ride with Santa Claus!

Now, I love milk tea. I’m probably the biggest consumer of it per capita in Japan. In fact, there’s no greater pleasure in life than a hot and toasty bottle of milk tea in the chilly Japanese winters. Which is why even though I was disappointed that the caramel flavor didn’t actually extend to the milk tea underneath, I still won’t begrudge this drink. It’s extremely cute, won’t leave you disappointed, and is probably a far better choice for the season than the confusing Mario & Luigi Hot Parfait drinks over at the Mario Cafe. The milk tea is perfectly balanced in sweetness, making it a bit pricey compared to a ¥250 8oz bottle from the vending machines, but for the extra ¥200, you get your money’s worth in both quantity and cuteness. I highly recommend this one!

If you want to try these, they’re available in the NO LIMIT! Market through the end of the holiday festivities in early January, so be sure to pop on by if you get the shivers. And let us know in the comments whether you’d want to give these a try!

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