Photo by Mochijapa (Ayano Irizuki)

Enjoy moon-viewing with seasonal selections from McDonald’s Japan [Review]

Every autumn, McDonald’s Japan offers season-limited menu items inspired by the custom of 月見 (tsukimi | moon-viewing).

The night when people see the beautiful moon in September is called 十五夜 (jūgoya | 15th night) because people used to celebrate this moon viewing custom on August 15th long ago. Today, the exact date of jūgoya changes every year and the full moon night this year was September 10th, 2022.

McDonald’s Japan has eight tsukimi items this year and I tried three out of them!

Kokuuma Sukiyaki Tsukimi

Photo by Mochijapa (Ayano Irizuki)

First, I’d like to introduce this year’s new burger, the こく旨 すき焼き月見 kokuuma sukiyaki tsukimi. In Japanese, kokuuma means “rich & delicious.” As for sukiyaki, if you're unfamiliar with it, it's one of Japan's most popular hot pot dishes made from simmered sliced beef and vegetables and seasoned with a mixture of rich soy sauce and sugar.


Photo by Mochijapa (Ayano Irizuki)

Look at the thick and round egg patty, bright yellow cheese, and juicy bacon! When Japanese food is called tsukimi, egg is usually used because the yellow and round yolk looks like a full moon. That’s why all burgers for the tsukimi special menu use a round sliced boiled egg. Since the egg is thick, you can’t see a hamburger patty, but there was a juicy beef patty in the burger.

Itadakimasu! (This is a Japanese phrase to say before eating.)

So delicious! I was surprised at its rich and complex taste. The secret was the combination of two special sauces.

Photo by Mochijapa (Ayano Irizuki)

The first one is this sauce. Yes, this is sukiyaki sauce! The taste is quite rich and the balance of sweetness and saltiness was very similar to real sukiyaki.

The second one was a creamy tomato sauce!

Photo by Mochijapa (Ayano Irizuki)

It's the perfect combination of fluffy buns, cheese, thick egg, smoked bacon, a juicy 100% beef patty, and the two kinds of sauce... Don’t miss your chance to enjoy this great burger during the tsukimi campaign!

Tsukimi Pie

Photo by Mochijapa (Ayano Irizuki)

The next item was the 月見パイ Tsukimi Pie. This was popular last year, but this was my first time to eat the Tsukimi Pie! I was excited!

Photo by Mochijapa (Ayano Irizuki)

A very crispy pie! Let’s try breaking it in half...

On the left is sweet red bean paste made from あずき azuki beans and the white part on the right is chewy mochi! Dango and mochi are also common foods used to celebrate tsukumi season (see below), so the pie makes use of it to invoke the celebratory mood.

Photo by Mochijapa (Ayano Irizuki)

The azuki paste was very sweet and the mochi wasn’t sweet. They were well balanced and delicious.

Yuzu Shichimi Sauce for chicken

Photo by Mochijapa (Ayano Irizuki)

The last item is 柚子七味ソース yuzu shichimi sauce for chicken nuggets. Yuzu is a round yellow citrus fruit with a unique fragrance and shichimi is a spice. Translated literally, 七味 shichimi means seven flavors, but chili pepper is the main spice in the mix.

The package has a cute design that not only shows a yuzu and a bottle of shichimi spice but also follows the moon-viewing theme with a full moon and a rabbit. In the folklore of Japan, as well as other parts of East Asia, the surface of the moon looks like a rabbit pounding something. In Japan, it's pounding mochi, which is why you'll find mochi in the Tsukimi Pie!

Photo by Mochijapa (Ayano Irizuki)

I made sure the put a lot of sauce on my nuggets before eating it. It was not hotter than I expected, but the balance between the citrus taste of the yuzu and the mild kick of spiciness was perfect. I especially recommend this to people who like yuzu.

For other items, check the official website and enjoy the tsukimi themed food!


By - Mochijapa (Ayano Irizuki).