Japan Travel in the Know: A Hokkaido Restaurant (Japanese Soup Curry)

A casual restaurant equipped with wooden tables and chairs

Ramen and curry are national dishes for the Japanese people

If you can only eat just one food, which would it be, ramen (noodle) or curry? I’m sure we all the Japanese people have asked and answered this stupid question at least once in our life. For your information, I’ll take curry, definitely! Anyway, the point is ramen and curry are the top two popular foods in Japan. As I looked up the number of restaurants, ramen is about 24000; curry about 4700, respectively.

I think the above difference in number well expresses the difference in character. Ramen is something to eat out; curry is one of home-cooked meals. In fact, when I was a kid, my mother made it at least two times a month. She always made a lot, and I had to eat it for three days in a row. I’m 100% sure this kind of ordeal still occurs in many Japanese homes.

Have you ever tried Hokkaido soup curry?

As I wrote before, Hokkaido (our home prefecture) is always ranked high in the prefectural ranking of ramen, and it’s in the 4th place among 47 prefectures in 2022. Even in the prefectural ranking of curry, Hokkaido is on a high level. It’s ranked in the 3rd place in the number of curry restaurants per population.

What makes this area unique and different from other prefectures is soup curry. In general, curry is a thick sauce and served on rice, while soup curry is thin soup and served separately from rice. I’ve taken my clients coming from India to soup curry restaurants, and they seemed to enjoy it. At that time, I felt very proud on seeing that. Speaking of India, the Japanese biggest curry restaurant chain “CoCo Ichi” expanded their business into the Indian market to open a shop in Gurgaon in 2020. As the shop still survives, Japanese curry may be able to delight even the Indian people.

Butter curry dish served in the restaurant located in Asahikawa Design Center in Hokkaido.

There are many good curry restaurants in Hokkaido

Today, I can’t find a soup curry restaurant with our furniture, and so, will be introducing a restaurant in Asahikawa Design Center (ADC), instead. In ADC, you can see a lot of furniture made by about 40 furniture manufacturers in Asahikawa (our hometown). It might be a good sightseeing course to look around high quality furniture in ADC and enjoy curry on some of the chairs displayed there. The restaurant is not specialized in curry, but the curry is also good. You have my word on it because the curry survives in the menu in this competitive curry market, Hokkaido.

Photo Credit: https://asahikawa.hokkaido-np.co.jp/2019/10/04/vol-814-palemta%EF%BC%88%E3%83%91%E3%83%AC%E3%83%B3%E3%82%BF%EF%BC%89/

A corporate logo, the letters of C and H are combined to look like a tree in a circle

Shungo Ijima

He is travelling around the world. His passion is to explain Japan to the world, from the unique viewpoint accumulated through his career: overseas posting, MBA holder, former official of the Ministry of Finance.