My final Japanese field trip saw me hop on a plane to Hokkaido late last month – A and I were very excited for the seafood bounty that this whole other world dangled in our faces. One thing I find incredibly interesting about Japan is that whole universes are separated by latitude (and yet, united by a love for fried food and sweet sweet things – no seriously). Anyway, after touching down and making an interesting trip to our hotel we went on the hunt for some raw goodness.
And really, we were hardly disappointed! The Sushi Hanamaru（寿司 花まる) chain is reputed to have the best kaitenzushi (conveyor belt sushi) in Sapporo. Conveyor belt sushi might be met with disdain if you haven’t had truly good ones, like my favourite place here in Fukuoka. But more on that sometime. We didn’t want to walk to JR Sapporo, so we opted to munch at one of their 3 sit down outlets instead the one closest to our lodging at Susukino. By the way, don’t let descriptions of Susukino being the “happening area” fool you. It’s really just lots of love hotels and izakayas around.
We got 2 sushi platters to share – a 16 piece nigiri and a 5 piece 人気 aburi set! This is the right way to burn fats, people. Sets are fun because you can try out new fish, like the eggs of a rare breed of salmon that’s in season in June. Gosh the name escapes me – too busy eating as usual. But it was being touted by the restaurant as a special seasonal offering.
Also ordered a 特選 sashimi platter to go along with the meal. Despite being somewhat of an accident due to a miscommunication, it was quite a nice surprise because of the components of the platter: ootoro, uni, abalone, crab and ama-ebi. !!! my tastebuds dance in joy…partly from just how big of a kick the wasabi gave too. Is it just me or is it spicier than usual?
The crab was so good. Steamed and chilled to bring out a burst of sweet crab juice with every bite. Hokkaido waters really have some magical things! We never had crab like this for the rest of the trip. De-shelled, too. Awesome.
Machi no Sushiya Hanamaru Susukinoten (町のすし屋 花まる すすきの店）
札幌市中央区南4条西2丁目2-4 札幌M-SQUARE 2F 〒064-0804