Photo by grape Japan

What makes Japanese convenience store egg sandwiches so exceptional?

Japanese convenience store egg salad sandwiches

If you haven't heard by now, compared to the kinds of sandwiches you'll find in convenience stores in most parts of the world, Japanese convenience store sandwiches are exceptionally good. Made with fluffy white shokupan milk bread, crusts removed and shaped into perfect triangles, they're hard to resist. And while you'll find BLT, tuna salad, and many others in Japanese conbini (convenience stores), there's one golden sandwich that has a special place in the hearts of conbini fare afficionados, and that's the tamago sando, the egg salad sandwich.

FamilyMart's improved tamago sando

As some of our readers may recall, we recently introduced FamilyMart's new sandwich lineup, which features more eco-friendly packaging and improvements in sandwich quality. Among the sandwiches targeted for the upgrade was their tamago sando, now featuring 25% more filling, and an improved egg salad recipe.

Of course, we had to try one for ourselves and see what all the fuss was about.

Photo by grape Japan

Indeed, these sandwiches did look plump.

Photo by grape Japan

The egg salad looked creamy and inviting, a deep yellow color, with chunks of cooked egg whites blended into the egg yolks...

Photo by grape Japan

Holding the sandwich, the shokupan was fluffy and soft and had a lightly sweet aroma. But how does it taste?

Photo by grape Japan

The first bite was so good that we really needed to exercise restraint to eat it slowly for this review!

Some egg salads we've tried have a bit too much vinegar for our taste, but this one was delightfully creamy and light, with the perfect amount of mayonnaise and good-quality eggs. The byline on the product name in Japanese says: "You can really appreciate the taste of eggs," and we agree wholeheartedly with that statement. The eggs are of good quality and the taste of egg yolks really does come across. It's not too salty either, which makes it easy to eat. As for the quantity, we could appreciate the additional 25% since any less would have probably left us wanting more.

Maybe that's the secret to an exceptional egg sandwich: simple and high-quality ingredients, done very well, and perfectly balanced. Of course, the airy and lightly sweet shokupan milk bread also helps bring everything together. The late Anthony Bourdain put it best. Although he was talking about another chain's sandwiches at the time, the same can be said of any great convenience store tamago sando in Japan: They're "unnaturally fluffy, insanely delicious (and) incongruously addictive." (Parts Unknown with Anthony Bourdain, Okinawa epsiode). And this sandwich is no exception.

It's definitely worth trying the next time you visit Japan!

FamilyMart's new and improved egg salad sandwiches (たまごサンド tamago sando) cost 212 JPY (228 JPY with tax) and are available at approximately 16,200 FamilyMart stores nationwide, excluding Okinawa Prefecture.

By - grape Japan editorial staff.