We are approaching the coldest time of year in Japan and Sapporo, Hokkaido is one of the coldest places throughout the country. There are probably a few things that come to mind when you think of Sapporo way up north. The Sapporo Snow Festival(Canceled 2022) may be one of those things. However this time we won’t be talking about the festival itself, but about some of the best restaurants to eat at in Sapporo near the main site of the festival. With a city that has so many good food options, it can be hard to pick. But don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! We’ve compiled a list of some of the best places to eat at in Sapporo while you are enjoying the festival or just taking a trip any other time of the year. I hope you’re as excited about this winter season as we are and that these restaurants make you want to make the trip out to Sapporo someday!
1. Teshikaga Ramen Yokocho
Sapporo is famous for its delicious miso ramen and Teshikaga Ramen is a great option if you are in the mood for a delicious bowl. It’s a popular restaurant and there is often a line to get in, but if you go during odd hours you might get lucky and not have to wait. Teshikaga is the oldest onsen(hot spring) in Eastern Hokkaido and water from the nearby Lake Mashu is transported to the store for fresh use. They prepare a 3 flavor sauce and the soup is only ready after it has boiled for 24 hours. It’s not only their ramen, but their gyoza brings in a lot of hungry guests as well. There’s nothing like a heart warming bowl of ramen to keep you warm during the winter!
- Location: https://goo.gl/maps/sFkZpJ7MjyQKr7Ca9
- Hours: Monday-Thursday, Sunday, Holidays 11:00AM~11PM Friday, Saturday 11:00AM~12:00AM(Midnight)
- Budget: ~850 yen
- Website: http://www.teshikaga-ramen.com/shop/yokocho/ (Japanese only)
2. Sushi Miyakawa
Sushi Miyakawa is an amazing sushi restaurant that serves you high end sushi among other things. It isn’t the cheapest option and you may need to reserve your spot ahead of time, but you won’t be disappointed with the quality of your meal. Sushi chef Masaki Miyakawa and Sushi Miyakawa were awarded with three Michelin stars in 2017, being the only sushi establishment in Hokkaido to receive such an honor. If you have the money and time, this restaurant is a must visit while you’re in Hokkaido!
- Location: https://goo.gl/maps/CgNEnc2LGMsM8jh47
- Hours: Thursday-Tuesday 5PM~8PM, Closed Wednesday
- Budget: 22,000yen(per person)
- Website: https://www.tableall.com/restaurant/94
3. Gotsubo Oyster Bar
Oysters may not be something that you think Sapporo would be famous for, but this tiny oyster bar is a great place to grab a meal and for a great price as well. The name “Gotsubo” comes from the two words “Go” which means five, and “Tsubo” which is a unit of measurement that is about 3.3 square meters. So 5 Tsubo is only about 16.5 square meters! That being said, the restaurant is small and only seats 5 people at a time. If you can make it into the restaurant, that’s the hard part because the oysters are only about 150 yen a piece! If you’re a seafood fan and are okay with being in small places, this is a fun and cheap option!
- Location: https://goo.gl/maps/deq7dWkpS39iVnWt6
- Hours: 6PM~2AM Everyday
- Budget: ~1000yen
- Website: https://www.facebook.com/gothubo/
4. Sapporo Genghis Khan (Main Shop)
Genghis Khan is a grilled mutton dish served in Japan. As you may have guessed from the name, this restaurant specializes in Genghis Khan, and their top grade lamb is imported from New Zealand. The meat is cut and prepared by hand and is grilled over charcoal, making the meat all the more succulent and juicy for you to enjoy. The restaurant has somewhat of a Showa style atmosphere which makes it feel like you are eating in the past. Lamb in Japan is not eaten all that often, but if you have the chance to make it out to Sapporo, you might want to check out this restaurant!
- Location: https://goo.gl/maps/aVRkT5FTEs55R9Z67
- Hours: Thursday-Tuesday 5PM~10PM, Closed Wednesday
- Budget: ~2000yen
- Website: https://yakiniku-restaurant-3362.business.site/ (Japanese only)
5. Sapporo Beer Garden
Well known throughout Japan and spreading in popularity all over the world, Sapporo beer tastes best when you are drinking it in Sapporo! If you’re a beer and meat lover, Sapporo Beer Garden is the perfect place for you. Located in a building made of brick during the Meiji period long ago, you feel like you are dining in a true pub atmosphere. The menu consists of a variety of different Hokkaido dishes and meats including the previously mentioned genghis khan. And of course, delicious Sapporo beer from the tap. There is also an all you can eat option if you feel like getting your money’s worth.
- Location: https://goo.gl/maps/wV4fUY1mvogSAKdZ6
- Hours: 11:30AM~9PM, Closed on December 31st
- Budget: ~3000yen depending on how much you drink!
- Website: https://www.sapporo-bier-garten.jp/global/english.html
6. Jyoti The Door to India
Open from morning until late into the evening, Jyoti The Door to India is the place to get authentic Indian curry while you are in Sapporo. With a wide variety of different curry and nan, and also vegetarian options, they have a great menu that is bound to have something that whets your appetite. They try their best to use organic food products fresh from Hokkaido with no additives or chemicals. If you are looking to get a quick break from all the seafood and ramen, this is a great option.
- Location: https://g.page/jyoti0331?share
- Hours: 11:30AM~10:30PM
- Budget: ~1000yen
- Website: http://chandama.jp/jyoti/access/
7. Mikuni Sapporo
Located on the 9th floor of Sapporo Stellar Place, right next to Sapporo station, Mikuni Sapporo is a fairly upscale French restaurant that serves authentic French food with a twist of their own unique style. Being on the 9th floor, there is a good view of the city and the staff is known to be quite friendly. Their menu also offers wild game and ingredients that are from the Hokkaido area. Open during the lunch and dinner hours, it can be a nice change of pace to eat some authentic western food every now and then in Japan.
- Location: https://goo.gl/maps/Mei5sH5vBVsJhRc47
- Hours: 11:30AM-3PM and 5:30PM-9:30PM Wednesday~Monday, Closed Tuesday
- Budget: 5000~10,000yen
- Website: https://www.jrhotels.co.jp/tower/english/restaurant/index.html
8. Hyousetsu No Mon
As Hokkaido is Japan’s second largest island, Sapporo is known as the crab capital of Japan. Being famous for crab, there are a lot of good options throughout the city. That being said, Hyousetsu No Mon has a long history and is one of the best places to eat the famed specialty. With king crab, snow crab, and horse crab always stocked, they serve some 30 odd different crab dishes! The dining options are mostly course meals but you can order single dishes and items as well if you can’t decide on just one course. You can’t leave without eating crab in the crab capital of Japan!
- Location: https://goo.gl/maps/EgbTNaDpvgzvxMHF9
- Hours: 11:00AM-11:00PM Everyday
- Budget: ~5000yen
- Website: http://www.hyousetsu.co.jp.e.em.hp.transer.com/sp/
9. Tempura Araki
Tempura is a traditional Japanese dish that typically consists of seafood, meat, and a variety of vegetables that are battered and deep fried. In Japan, tempura tends to be a pretty quick meal and on the cheaper side. However every now and then you can find a restaurant that has taken it to the next level. Tempura Araki is one of those restaurants. Chef Yoshiyuki Araki has always had a liking for tempura and worked at various tempura restaurants, knowing he eventually wanted to open his own. In 2014 he made his dream come true and shortly after received the honor of Two Michelin stars! Chef Araki seeks the pinnacle in every small detail of his hospitality, from food, to lacquerware, to his restaurant as a whole. This isn’t the cheapest option in Sapporo, but if you’re looking for something out of this world, Tempura Araki is just the place you’re looking for.
- Location: https://goo.gl/maps/qvn8W2cBY4T2hUqV9
- Hours: 6PM-10PM Monday~Saturday
- Budget: 21,500yen(per seat)
- Website: https://www.tableall.com/restaurant/177
10. Sky J
Whether you are looking to have breakfast, lunch, or dinner, Sky J offers you delicious French food with an amazing view of the city. Located on the 35th floor of the JR Tower, you have the luxury of dining 150 meters up. There isn’t a better view of the city, especially at night when everything is lit up. For breakfast and lunch, they offer a buffet style dining option which is a bargain for the quality of food. Dining during the dinner hour, there are a number of different course meal options, not to mention the 6 course Chef’s selection. If you’re planning on going for dinner, be sure to make a reservation ahead of time. If you are only in the mood for a drink, the bar area has you covered. You can enjoy the beautiful view without worrying about paying for a full dinner. There’s no better way to see the city than from 35 stories up!
- Location: https://goo.gl/maps/r4oLT3aVKsKDEUoZ7
- Hours: Breakfast 6:30AM-10:00AM, Lunch 11:30AM-3:30PM, Dinner 5:30PM-8:30PM, Bar 8:30PM-10:30PM
- Budget: 2500~14,000yen
- Website: https://www.jrhotels.co.jp/tower/english/restaurant/index.html
11. Umi Hachikyo (Main Shop)
Umi Hachikyo is a traditional Japanese restaurant that specializes in one of the foods Sapporo is famous for, seafood! Their most popular dish is “Tsukko meshi” which is salmon roe brined in soy sauce over a bowl of rice until the salmon roe is on the verge of overflowing! Salmon roe is a delicacy in Japan and at Umi Hachikyo their salmon roe is produced in Hokkaido. Their fresh sashimi, grilled fish, and everything on their menu is delicious as well. The interior of the restaurant features ring buoys, fishing lamps and fishing boat flags that indicate large catches for the fishermen. They have done an amazing job of recreating the atmosphere of a guard lodge where fishermen used to gather. Not only do they take pride in their food, but they hold their service to a high standard as well. This is a great place to experience what a true Japanese seafood restaurant is like!
- Location: https://goo.gl/maps/LFNKMU6cbkgzojGb7
- Hours: 6PM-12AM Everyday
- Budget: 1500~4000yen
- Website: https://hachikyo.com/en
12. Ramen Shingen
With so many good ramen options in Sapporo, we couldn’t help but put another ramen shop on our list! Ramen Shingen Minami is a fairly small ramen shop that’s almost always busy, and very popular among both visitors and locals alike. This shop also specializes in what Sapporo is famous for, miso ramen. The portions of a normal sized bowl are fairly big so there is a half size option for cheaper as well. If you don’t mind waiting in line for a little while and you like ramen in even the slightest, Ramen Shingen is a must visit!
- Location: https://goo.gl/maps/ZoYKQGkqPA1aVp74A
- Hours: 11AM-1AM Everyday
- Budget: ~800yen
- Website: https://tabelog.com/en/hokkaido/A0101/A010103/1002793/dtlmap/
From ramen, to seafood to Genghis Khan, there are so many great food options in Sapporo that sometimes you don’t know where to start. So hopefully these 12 favorites of ours make the decision a bit easier for you. All of them are perfect for a meal or even just a snack while you are taking a break from the snow festival. Which one do you want to try the most? If you have the chance, Sapporo is a great place to visit, whether you are there for the snow festival or not.