Halloween-Themed Cheeseburger Features a Bacon "Tongue"

October 31 is still more than a month away but Lotteria—a fast food chain with restaurants located throughout Japan and East Asia—is already giving customers a taste of the Halloween spirit. The company recently introduced a few new menu items, including a vampire-themed cheeseburger, The Daily Meal reports.

The "Purple Magic Bacon Double Excellent Cheeseburger" features two beef patties, cheese, and a slice of smoked bacon on top that's arranged to resemble a monster’s "tongue"—all topped with a dollop of "purple sauce," the chain’s regular cheese sauce dyed purple with Japanese Okinawan sweet potato. The entree is packaged in wax paper decorated with vampire fangs on it and delivered inside of a purple coffin-shaped box.

The fast food company is known for its over-the-top burgers, such as the Potato Chip Burger and the "Burger with Everything on It" (which includes a hamburger, cheeseburger, fried shrimp, ribs, bacon, slices of cheese, and a soft-boiled egg topped with the usuals, as well as a special sauce—a mix of teriyaki, mayo, spicy mayonnaise, tartar sauce, meat sauce, and ketchup). And the Halloween-themed additions to the menu are no different. Alongside the "Purple Magic Bacon Double Excellent Cheeseburger," Lotteria will serve the Halloween Shrimp Burger, made with diced Japanese Ebisu pumpkins.

The themed dishes are all available from October 6 to October 31 for 800 yen each (about $8).

[h/t The Daily Meal]

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toyohara, Flickr // CC BY-NC 2.0 (cropped)
Meet Japan's Original (Not-so-Fresh) Form of Sushi, 'Funazushi'
toyohara, Flickr // CC BY-NC 2.0 (cropped)
toyohara, Flickr // CC BY-NC 2.0 (cropped)

When it comes to sushi, fresh is usually best. Most of the sushi we eat in America is haya-nare, which involves raw seafood and vinegared rice. But in Japan, there's an older form of sushi—said to be the original form—called funazushi. It's made from fermented carp sourced from one particular place, Lake Biwa, and takes about three years to produce from start to finish. The salt it's cured with keeps the bad bacteria at bay, and the result is said to taste like a fish version of prosciutto. Great Big Story recently caught up with Mariko Kitamura, the 18th generation to run her family’s shop in Takashima City, where she's one of the very few people left producing funazushi. You can learn more about the process behind the delicacy, and about Kitamura, in the video below.

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Bibo Barmaid
Bibo Barmaid Is Like a Keurig for Cocktails—and You Can Buy It Now
Bibo Barmaid
Bibo Barmaid

To make great-tasting cocktails at home, you could take a bartending class, or you could just buy a fancy gadget that does all the work for you. Imbibers interested in the hands-off approach should check out Bibo Barmaid, a cocktail maker that works like a Keurig machine for booze.

According to Supercall, all you need to turn the Bibo Barmaid system into your personal mixologist is a pouch of liquor and a pouch of cocktail flavoring. Bibo's liquor options include vodka, whiskey, rum, and agave spirit (think tequila), which can be paired with flavors like cucumber melon, rum punch, appletini, margarita, tangerine paloma, and mai tai.

After choosing your liquor and flavor packets, insert them into the machine, press the button, and watch as it dilutes the mixture and pours a perfect single portion of your favorite drink into your glass—no muddlers or bar spoons required.

Making cocktails at home usually means investing in a lot of equipment and ingredients, which isn't always worth it if you're preparing a drink for just yourself or you and a friend. With Bibo, whipping up a cocktail isn't much harder than pouring yourself a glass of wine.

Bibo Barmaid is now available on Amazon for $240, and cocktail mixes are available on Bibo's website starting at $35 for 18 pouches. The company is working on rolling out its liquor pouches in liquor stores and other alcohol retailers across the U.S.

[h/t Supercall]

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