The Balmuda "transforms store-bought bread into something that smells, tastes and feels like it popped out of a baker's oven," says Reed Stevenson of Bloomberg. The company is making 10,000 units a month, and there's a 3 month waiting list. It's available in Japan only.
The idea of reinventing the toaster came from an equally unlikely source: Terao, a high-school dropout who spent his college funds (a life-insurance payout after his mother died) trekking across Spain, Morocco and the Mediterranean. He returned to front a rock band called the Beach Fighters, which broke up after nine years; they had a record contract, but never made it big. To make ends meet, Terao worked at a pachinko parlor (a pinball-style gambling hall) while figuring out his next move.
"I was reading Forbes when I was in the band," the 42 year-old said. "And like music, I wanted to create something that I liked, and find out if people liked that too."