As a local tour guide, I need to visit as many regional destinations as possible and see things first hand. It is nothing special, of course. But, when you find a place or a thing in your area that you have somehow missed before, and if the place or the thing turned out to be your cup of tea, wouldn't you feel happy for the rest of the day? And wouldn't you feel like sharing your discovery with your family members or friends?
Well, this is my discovery today. The photo I uploaded here is a package of "Ryukyu-noh Shizuku." What contained inside the styrofoam box are wrapped, bite-sized brown-sugar soft caramels.
Soft caramels, or more popularly called "nah-mah carameloo" here in Japan, has become widely popular ever since Hanabatake Bokujo in Hokkaido introduced this new category of confection several years ago. Soon, dozens of other candy makers followed suit. I don't know how many confectionaries are out there now, having come up with their own products of soft caramels.
Here in Okinawa, we have this particular product for one. "Ryukyu-noh Shizuku" is a product of Ryukyu Aloe Ltd. (http://ryukyualoe.co.jp/). I happened to find a small wooden sign quetly put up by the roadside in the quiet community of Nakijin and the sign is written only in Japanese, making it almost impossible for foreign travellers to visit the confectionary.
Abundance of high quality brown suger -- as sugarcane is the main crop here on the island prefecture -- enables the candy maker to manufacture this rare sweet treat. It's rare because the amount of caramel it can produce in a day is limited and only a handful of stores with the license contract are allowed to sell this brand. (I have not yet checked which stores in Okinawa sell "Ryukyu-noh Shizuku.")
How does it taste? you ask.
Well, I'll put it like...it's soft and richly creamy and I recommend you taste what the lush, sun-kissed sugarcane on Okinawa has to offer in a very sweet manner.