Before we give you our list of great ramen joints, here's a bit of bonus information about some great foodie tours in Sapporo. Magical Trip offers some really fun bar hopping tours with a local that will make you discover those hard-to-find quaint izakayas serving great foods and drinks that only a local can guide you to.
Sapporo Ramen Yokocho
Imagine a yokocho alley made up entirely of ramen restaurants. Sounds like a dream? Well, your dream can come true in Sapporo! The Sapporo Ramen Yokocho is a famous alley not just for its concentration delicious ramen but also for being the originator of the miso ramen! Here is more on this famous spot!
Of its full name Ganso (originator) Sopporo Ramen Yokocho is located near the Susukino Station in Sapporo. It all started in 1951 when 7 ramen joints set shop in the yokocho alley. The place became known as "the ramen alley" and gradually more joints moved in there until it became all ramen. Today, the place counts 17 restaurants all renowned for making excellent ramen in typical Hokkaido style!
Hokkaido is famous for the miso ramen, and Ganso Sapporo Ramen Yokocho is actually the birth place of that ramen style! Today you can find it everywhere in Japan. Another particularity of the Hokkaido ramen is the use of a seafood broth. You find both of these styles in the yokocho.
This restaurant called Teshikaga is extremely popular. You can have both types (miso and seafood) of ramen here for about ¥800. Japanee that eat there will often say that they have a nostalgic feeling of the Showa period because of the retro interior. In general, the joints of the yokocho are old and small, many of which have only about 6 counter seats. Small spaces are very typical of yokocho establishments.
The Ramen You'll See
Typical Hokkaido ramen! See how they use ingredients such as corn and add some butter in the soup? Hokkaido is Japan's dairy land, so the cuisine here uses a lot of butter, cream, and milk. Corn is a crop that grows very well in Hokkaido and it can be produced in large quantity because of there are vast unpopulated land areas.
Two nice pieces of crab are in this bowl! The waters around Hokkaido are also known for having delicious seafood, hence why the seafood ramen is particularly popular there.
This ramen bowl has the biggest piece of chachu pork you'll probably ever see! All restaurants bring their own twist to the classic ramen dish of Hokkaido.
Extra pork belly meat anyone?
Spicy dishes are also available.
You can also have your ramen tsukemen-style, which means the noodles are served in a separate bowl which comes along with a thick, rich dipping sauce and your toppings on the side. The Yokocho is also located near the Susukino Station.
The "New" Ramen Yokocho
Just when you thought that having one ramen yokocho alley was too good to be true, another ramen yokocho alley opened later on called the Shin (New) Ramen Yokocho! Seeing the success of the original ramen yokocho, a group of ramen joints decided to cooperate in creating a rival alley.
You get the same deal here. Great Hokkaido ramen for less than 1,000 yen a bowl.
If that doesn't make you visit Sapporo, I don't know what will! Great foods abound in Hokkaido, and ramen is definitely one of them.
For other guides about the famous yokocho alleys of Japan, please check out the links below.