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Blue Seal Brings Bagels, Coffee and More…

By: Dinner Gong

Date Posted: 2000-06-02

Since 1948, Blue Seal has been famous in Japan for delicious American-style ice cream. "Born In America…" is still part of the company’s slogan, even though it has passed ownership from American to Dutch to Japanese. Last April, the ice cream chain added the Golden Gate Coffee shop to two locations in Okinawa. Chatan and Makimanato are the two fortunate chains to offer coffee, pastries and sandwiches alongside the many flavors of ice cream.

Rarely can you find a hot cup of java or a frothy cappuccino for less than 400 yen on Okinawa. Golden Gate defies the status quo by offering prices from 200 to 230 yen per tasty cup. Cappuccino, Caffe Latte, Espresso and American coffee are all on the menu and all can be served iced as well.

The American style coffee shop is slowly growing in Japan. Companies such as Starbucks are popping up in major cities across the mainland as the people's craving for the caffeine rush has increased. According to Advertising representative Ms. Omine, Blue Seal wanted to do the same. "We started the coffee shop to bring quality coffee to Okinawa," said Omine.

Additionally, Golden Gate serves luscious mango and guava fruit drinks, appropriately named Granita, for 250 yen as well as yummy sandwiches. Savory ham and cheese, tuna or ham and egg are served on a choice of baguette, petit bread or croissant, and are priced under 300 yen. New to the family is the bagel sandwich, which is served with your choice of meat and plain cream cheese on a plain, sesame or onion bagel (bagels, as well, are also a relatively new concept to Japan as chains are slowly starting up in mainland). A variety of pastries and breads are sold as well as plain bagels.

Of course, there is always room for the ice cream Blue Seal is famous for. This year, in honor of the G-8 Summit, Blue Seal is offering a group of "Summit flavors". The flavors range from mint chocolate chip (America) to Maple for Canada and can be purchased to take home in special Summit packs.

Directions: The Chatan branch Blue Seal (and Golden Gate) is located on Hwy 58, directly across from Camp Lester. Menus are in English.

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