Pretty soon, you’ll be able to get more than just ramen from Yo-Kai Express vending machines and meal kits. Yo-Kai Founder and CEO, Andy Lin, shared on Linkedin today that his company will be adding a frosty dessert to its menus.
The Yo-Kai “signature snow ice,” Lin wrote, consists of “Himalayan salt whip cream with brown sugar boba black milk tea.” No specific timeframe was mentioned but Lin said the dessert would be available in Yo-Kai machines and home meal kits “soon.”
We reached out to Lin to fill in some details and will update the post when those arrive. Overall, this marks another bit of expansion for the vending machine startup.
When we first started covering Yo-Kai, its automated vending machines served hot ramen to customers in high-traffic areas like malls, airports and corporate campuses. But as the pandemic hit the U.S., those locations saw fewer and fewer people.
So, if people can’t come to you, you may as well go directly to them. In April of this year, Yo-Kai started selling ramen meal kits that ship directly to consumers’ doors (if you live on the West Coast).
Like the meal kits, the addition of a cool dessert isn’t too much of a surprise either. Once made, Yo-Kai’s bowls of ramen are frozen and stored that way inside the vending machine before being reheated. A similar, pre-made frosty snow ice dessert in a bowl seems like a pretty easy thing for the Yo-Kai machine to dispense as well.
It should also be noted that according to the Yo-Kai website, two of its machines are installed at Milk Tea labs in San Francisco and San Jose. So offering a boba/black milk tea doesn’t seem like that much of a stretch.
As I’ve written before, I’m all-in on vending machines (and wrote an extensive report on them for Spoon Plus Subscribers), in part because of their ability to offer really good food, from a very compact space around the clock. While I haven’t had the chance to test out Yo-Kai’s snow ice dessert, given how much I liked their ramen meal kit, it’s hard to imagine them making their first foray into desserts a bad one.