At Sapporo Daimaru Department Store's food floor, you can find Hoppe Town: a treasure trove of over 82 gourmet food spots, all centered around some of the best local brands of Hokkaido! With direct access between Sapporo Station and this underground mall, you will soon find yourself wandering through a delicious variety of foods along the way.
Here, we take a look at some of the most popular spots among foreign visitors as recommended by the staff.
1. LeTao: #1 Best-Selling Langues de Chats Biscuits!
LeTao is one of Hokkaido's leading Western-style confectionaries, with its head office located in Otaru. They offer a wide range of products, from raw confectionaries to baked goods, all of which make perfect gifts, and have become a staple souvenir choice of Hokkaido.
The current most popular souvenir item at their shops is the double-cheese Langues de Chats biscuits, 'Otaru Ironai Doori Fromage' (918 yen for 10 pieces). These treats combine two types of cheese, resulting in light, moderately sweet and salty cheese cookies and cheese chocolates. In summer of 2019, Hoppe Town's Western confectionaries came in at number one in daily sales, proof of their popularity and practically guaranteeing them as great souvenirs, too!
You can also try their 'Double Fromage' (1728 yen). This treat also combines two types of cheeses - cream cheese and mascarpone - with carefully selected Hokkaido fresh cream, allowing you to enjoy the delicious richness of both soft and baked cheesecake at the same time. You can order them as souvenirs by delivery as well.
This spot also happens to be the only place where you can buy fresh confectionaries in Sapporo City. Why not treat yourself to a well-deserved cake while you're at it?
2. D&M Cave: How About Hokkaido Sake as a Souvenir?
Recently, Hokkaido has become famous as a producer of all kinds of alcohols, from sake to beer, to wine and whiskey. There are Japanese and Western liquor stores that carry a wide arrangement of local liquor brands, and from both newly-established as well as long-standing sake breweries.
(Photo: From the left: Sapporo's Chitose Tsuru no Daiginjo Kissho, 6580 yen; Asahikawa's Otokoyama Shuzo Junmai Daiginjo 'Otokoyama,' 5400 yen; Asahikawa's Takasago Shuzo Junmai Daiginjo 'Asahi Kamui,' 5400 yen. All tax included.)
The Japanese sake is particularly popular, especially the famous brand Daiginjo, a high-quality, highly fragrant sake brand made using only the best parts of the rice. This brand is highly recommended for people new to the world of sake. Many people buy Daiginjo as Hokkaido souvenirs from this well-established brewery, popularized by its fragrance and deep flavor.
There are many places in Sapporo known for producing high-quality grapes, which are used in the production of these delicious Hokkaido wines. These Hokkaido wines have attracted plenty of attention lately amongst wine lovers. Many people also buy individually packaged beers to drink during their travels, as well as snacks and lunch bento boxes that are available across the floor. Conveniently packed, most of these snacks are easy to just grab and go as you make your way to the station.
3. FRESH ONE: Sweet Local Hokkaido Fruit Stand
Another popular but little-known souvenir idea for tourists is fresh fruit. FRESH ONE is a shop that offers all kinds of fresh fruits and vegetables from all over Hokkaido. Many people choose these high-quality seasonal fruits as souvenirs, which can conveniently be shipped overseas. Because Japanese fruits tend to have a particularly higher sugar content, you can also expect a delicious, sweet taste.
Summertime brings an arrangement of popular Hokkaido melons and watermelons to the lineup. In the fall, you can see an even greater variety, from grapes and pears to apples. The store also offers freshly cut fruit which make great breakfast and snack options!
There is also a juice bar on the opposite side of the floor where you can enjoy freshly squeezed fruit juice from fresh, seasonal fruits for only 280 yen (tax included).
4. Kinotoya: Exquisite Sapporo Cheese Tarts
Kinotoya is a pastry shop that originated right here in Sapporo, and has seen a recent increase in popularity throughout Japan as well as overseas. As far as souvenirs go, the most popular item by far is the Hokkaido Milk Cookies, 'Sapporo Nougakko,' amongst others. There is also a workshop in the Daimaru location, where the pastry chefs bake their homemade sweets fresh.
The most popular of these is the Freshly Baked Cheese Tart (183 yen, tax included). Baked directly in store, you can enjoy the fresh taste of a crispy outer dough filled with delicious, melted cheese. It can maintain its deliciousness for up to three days when refrigerated, and are ideal as souvenirs.
The most highly recommended product of this shop is the Croquant Choux Pastry ZakuZaku (216 yen, tax included), made with a homemade custard cream filling stuffed into the choux dough. The sweetness of the cream entangled with the choux makes it a delicious and enjoyable treat.
These treats are best enjoyed on the same day. There is a cafe space in the back of the store so you can enjoy these delicious, freshly-made sweets on the spot and unwind from your souvenir shopping.
5. Ikkyu Daifuku-do: Mochi Made Right Before Your Eyes!
Ichikyu Daifukudo is a Hokkaido confectionary brand located in Asahikawa, Hokkaido. Each piece is carefully hand-crafted with anko paste made from locally produced red beans and mochi.
Another popular locally-made product found in this shop is yokan, made with local Hokkaido red beans for a refreshingly sweet and delicious taste. These yokan are also small and light, making them the perfect souvenir, and are available in a variety of flavors including the standard anko and brown sugar, as well as more unique flavors such as kabocha and salt (216 yen, tax included).
However, the most popular products here are the handmade mochi items. The Daimaru Sapporo branch has a workshop stationed behind a glass wall where you can observe the mochi being freshly made into daifuku and dango.
In addition to the items lining the shop, you can also purchase the fresh dango and daifuku made right here in this workshop. The most popular item is the skewered dango (starting at 108 yen, tax included) and black bean daifuku (140 yen, tax included). You can also see other delicious, locally-produced Japanese confectionaries, such as dorayaki and ohagi, on display.
When purchasing your items, be sure to visit the duty-free counter on the 8th floor. Shopping discounts for inbound travelers are also available. There are also special hospitality services available including multilingual interpretation, which provides detailed special attention to tourists. Here are Hoppe Town, in the basement of Daimaru Sapporo Department Store, you can find all kinds of delicious treats. As you take a stroll around, you are sure to find that one special Hokkaido gourmet treat that calls out specially to you.
Daimaru Sapporo Hoppe Town
Daimaru Sapporo B1F, 4-Chome-7, Kita 5-Jonishi, Chuo-ku, Sapporo City, Hokkaido 〒060-0005
Hours of Operation: 10:00AM~8:00PM
Regular Holidays: New Year Holidays
Text by: Minanokotobasha