The 3 Best Ume Candies Widely Enjoyed in Japan
When it comes to blossoms that represent Japan, the fact that we love “sakura (桜)” or cherry blossoms is widely known.
Sakura blooms in spring when Japanese people enjoy cherry blossom viewing or hanami.
Meanwhile, in winter, we love “ume (梅)” the most.
What is Ume Candy?
Ume is referred to as Japanese apricot in English. The tree has white or pink blossoms and bears fruit known as ume plums.
Even when the fruit has fully riped, it doesn’t become sweet, featuring intense acidity.
But it is often used in Japanese cuisine, and “umeboshi (梅干し)” made of it is especially well-known.
The plums can also be the main ingredient in sweets, and some of those treats are generally called ume candy.
3 Best and Most loved Japanese Ume Candies
Ume candy comes in various forms, including gummy, but the mainstream is hard candy.
There are many ume plum candies, but the following three are the best-sellers most loved in Japan.
Nama Ume Ame (生梅飴) from Ribon
First, Nama Ume Ame is a popular ume candy produced and sold by Ribon.
This product has a good reputation in Japan, and some people have said online that it is the most delicious ume candy.
Although the candy itself is sweet and only has a subtle ume flavor, it is filled with tart umeboshi paste using 50 percent ume plum flesh.
However, the combination is exquisite, making the taste an absolute delight.
Koume (小梅) from Lotte
Koume is arguably one of the best and most famous ume candies, introduced by Lotte in 1974.
The product consists of two different varieties of ume candy; most are small, filled with a slightly sour umeboshi paste, and coated with a bit salty ume powder.
Only two pieces in the bag are large-sized, and they are sweeter than the small ones.
Otoko Ume Candy (男梅キャンディー) from Nobel
Otoko Ume Candy is a unique, tasty umeboshi candy from Nobel. It uses the same amount of juice as a single ume plum contains per piece.
Because of that, it is like a cross between an umeboshi and a candy. But the taste is quite addictive, grabbing many people’s hearts.