There are a lot of vending machines in Japan. Every block or so, there’s at least one vending machine, usually selling beverages (sodas, coffee, juice, tea, beer) but I also saw ones selling ice cream and, of course, ramen. Since I’m addicted to coffee, and as a service to you, my readers, I tried at least one vending machine iced coffee a day. The average was about $1.50/can. Most were pretty good, but I have to say that the best kinds were not found in vending machines but in convenience stores. The convenience store coffees were a bit more pricey but they were a lot better — probably because they were fresher (and therefore, more expensive), and were free of the metallic taste that were sometimes found with the canned iced coffees.
How did I choose which ones to get? Well, I tried to do what I could with my limited Japanese. I avoided the low sugar or sugar free ones. I also stayed away from any of the ones saying “MAX” on them, to avoid going into some caffeine-crazed tailspin. Mostly, I went for lattes. Sometimes I chose the coffees based on labels, such as the Boss Coffee Rainbow, since it seemed very happy and gay-friendly.
The collage below was taken from 5 vending machines side-by-side at a park/nature reserve area. So many choices!