Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Hokkaido Trip 1

I went to Hokkaido for 10 days last year. Didn't expect to go to Japan as I always planned on going to London again. I never get bored of England, I can go there every year and never get bored. I decided to go to Japan as I haven't been there for over 10 years. Last time I went I was 14 and I went with my parents. I chose Hokkaido over England was because of the food. I just love all kinds of Japanese food.

Hokkaido is in the northern part of Japan. I chose Hokkaido as the food is fresher than Tokyo. The seafood in Hokkaido is the best in Japan. I only went to the central part, western and southern part of Hokkaido. But I heard the northern and eastern part have better seafood. I will go back in a few years time. The northest part of Hokkaido, Wakkanai ( 稚內市) they have the freshest and best uni ( sea urchin) but for that city most of the shops only open during the summer months. most shops only operate during the months of April- September!!!

Even though I have 10 days 9 night in Hokkaido, it's still not enough. I wish I went for a full two weeks.

Day 1- Nov 18, 2012
I left Toronto on Nov 17 and it took me 18 hours to arrive at Sapporo. There is no direct flight to Sapporo so I had to change flights at Tokyo. With all the flying, flight delay at Tokyo and time zone difference, I didn't arrive at Sapporo until late at night. So one day wasted.

Day 2- Nov 19, 2012
This was a day dedicated to shopping. There is just so much stuff I want from Japan. With the limited suitcase space, I had a hard time choosing things to buy. Skincare products, I can find most of them easily in Toronto so I didn't buy much skincare products. I didn't buy any makeup products as I always ended up wasting them. I buy too much and never use them fast enough! The main items on my list were beauty gadgets. I picked up the Hitachi Hada Crie cm-n1000 cool and the MTG refa Carat. I also had my eyes on the Panasonic ion face steamer but there were too many kinds so I had problem choosing one. I'll leave that to my next trip to Asia.

Hitachi ion cleansing device!

comes in 100v power supply. Can use it in Canada without an adaptor 

MTG Refa Carat Vs MTF Refa Pro

Clothes I didn't buy much from Japan. The clothes are just um.. too Kawaii for my taste. they do have some lovely coats but none were made for Canadian winters. I only bought a cape/poncho and restock on pants from uniqlo.

Food was the main reason for going, so I tried my best to try out as many different restaurants as I can.
I love ramen or I should say I love soup noodles. It's my comfort food. So I chose to have ramen for my first actual meal in Japan.  As all shopping was done near the JR station, I chose to go to the Sapporo Ramen Kyowakoku 札幌ら~めん共和国トップ for lunch.  There were only 8 restaurants and I still had a hard time choosing. In the end I chose to try ひるがお for their shio ramen. 

Their famous Shio Ramen in chicken broth

Shio ramen with egg

Is their ramen that good? Compared to Toronto, it's better than a lot of places. But I find Sansotei's ramen better than this store. From the noodle texture to the broth, Sansotei taste better!

For Dinner, I stayed in the JR area. This time I chose Japanese BBQ.  Why don't we have it in Toronto? They have it in Vancouver and other American cities. All we have is korean BBQ which is something I hate. 

Gyukaku, they have it in a lot of north american cities but not Toronto. We don't even have anything similar. >_<

the meat for table cooking

veggie plate. All the veggie portions are relatively small. No wonder they have all kinds of veggie supplements.

beef tongue. 

Table cooking stove. The temperature is a lot hotter than Korean BBQ. 

After this meal, all I can say is the meat quality in Japan is so good. I never knew pork could taste so good!

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