Unsmiling, tight-lipped and at times appearing heavy-handed, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga was never exactly the type of politician the public would take a shine to — let alone swoon over.

But suddenly, he is.

A photo of Suga relishing a snack of pancakes — a favorite of his — recently re-emerged online after his announcement of Japan's new imperial era name, Reiwa (beautiful harmony), on April 1, prompting many to characterize his sweet tooth as a "cute" side of his persona.