Monday, March 2, 2009
Mt. Rainier. The Mountain. It's as familiar to me as the back of my hand, and I spent my whole life living in its shadow. I consider it one of my favorite destinations on Earth, and I have even talked about climbing it one day. (We'll see if that really comes true, but it's a nice thought in the meantime.) Whenever I see it, I know I am home. So imagine how surprised and perplexed I was when I first came across Mt. Rainier Coffee in the refrigerator section at a convenience store here in Japan. This is not a new find; I've known about it for a while but just didn't get around to sharing it with you. So am I the only one who thinks it is weird that this coffee exists in Japan but not Washington State, or at least not that I am aware of? And notice the strong resemblance to another Washington institution---ahem, can anyone say "Starbucks"? I did a bit of googling, and apparently there have been some discussions about logo copyright infringements (big surprise!), but I don't think anything has come of it yet.
I can't end this post without also offering links to a few Mt. Rainier Coffee commercials. The first is a catchy little musical number that was fun the first couple of times I saw it, but now it is REALLY getting on my nerves: http://www.mt-rainier-cl.com/index.html#/Top/0 I never knew that coffee made so many people want to dance!
The second is one from YouTube with Scarlett Johansson: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7mHWYKKFuzo&feature=related She also has a winter one where she's sitting in front of a fireplace drinking the coffee, but you'll have to find that on your own. It's not unusual to see American celebrities occasionally doing advertising spots over here. Tommy Lee Jones is often see on ads for Boss Coffee (another Japanese coffee brand), and I recently saw Arnold Schwarzenegger speaking Japanese in an ad promoting California tourism. Go Arnold.
So, go enjoy a latte! I will enjoy my Mt. Rainier one. And yes, they taste pretty darn good.
Posted by Ellen at 2:13 PM