(Sapporo-50/Honoji)日本美味しいもの巡り Japan delicious food and wine tour

3月の北の大地へ。機材トラブルで数時間機内に缶詰めになり、着陸したのはすっかり陽が落ちたあと。東京は桜が開花、季節は春だが、札幌はまだまだ0度前後、ちらちらと雪が舞う冬。特にこの時期はワンシーズン違う。ひと息つきたい夜は、もちろん電車通りにある「ほの路」に。

Flew to Hokkaido, the northern island of Japan, in March.  Stuck in the plane for a few hours due to aircraft trouble, so landed after the sun had already set.  In Tokyo, the cherry blossoms were in bloom and spring was in full swing, but in Sapporo, the temperature was still around 0 degrees Celsius and there were flurries of snow in winter.  Sapporo was in a different season.  Wanted to take a break, so went to "Honoji" on the Densha-dori street.

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まず目に入るのは、壁に貼られた地元感・季節感たっぷりの多彩なメニュー。大将のこだわりとお店の歴史を感じる。何にしようか悩むのも楽しいひととき。

The first thing seen was a variety menus posted on the wall with local and seasonal atmosphere.  Could feel the owner's commitment and the history of the restaurant.  It was a fun time to wonder what to have tonight.
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お酒は、こちらで定番にしてる根室の「北の勝」を。新潟県から北海道に移住してきた碓氷勝三郎(うすいかつさぶろう)氏が明治20年根室市で酒造りを開始。北海道の大地と創業者の名前にちなんで「北の勝」と命名。日本国内で最も東に位置する蔵元だという。辛口だがふくよかで甘みがあるが主張し過ぎない、食中にぴったりのお酒。

For the sake, had "Kitanokatsu" from Nemuro, which always have here.  Mr. Katsusaburo Usui, who moved to Hokkaido from Niigata Prefecture, started brewing sake in Nemuro City in 1887.  He named the brewery "Kitanokatsu" after the land of Hokkaido and his given name.  It is said the most eastern sake brewery in Japan.  It is a dry but full-bodied sake with a sweetness that is not too overpowering, making it perfect for drinking with food.

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白板のおすすめ品。

Recommendations on the white board.
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こちらは定番メニュー。

This is the standard menu.
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タラフライと丸雑炊が気になる…。写真はないが、裏面には人気の納豆オムレツ。いつか頂きたい。

Curious about the fried cod and the Maru rice porridge... No photo here, but on the back of menu is the popular natto omelet.  Would like to try it sometime.

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さて、お通しの茶碗蒸し。夏は冷製、冬は温かい。中の具は銀杏、海老に蒲鉾。上品な出汁に大将の確かな腕を実感。いつもホッとする味。

Now, the steamed egg custard.  It is served cold in summer and warm in winter.  The ingredients inside are ginkgo, shrimp, and kamaboko.  The elegant soup stock shows the master's skill.  The taste is always comforting.
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アイヌネギの酢味噌和え。別名ギョウジャ(行者)ニンニク。味わいはネギとニラ、少しニンニクの香り。雪解けとともに姿を出すギョウジャニンニクユリ科多年草。北海道を代表する栄養価の高い野菜で、春の山菜らしく爽やかで食欲がわく。名前の由来は、山にこもっていた修行をされる方が食べたとされる薬草だから、だとか。

Ainu leek with vinegared miso.  Also known as Gyoja garlic.  It tastes of leeks and chives, with a hint of garlic.  Gyoja garlic is a perennial herb of the lily family that appears when the snow melts.  It is one of Hokkaido's most nutritious vegetables, and is a refreshing and appetizing spring wild vegetable.  Its name comes from the fact that it is a medicinal herb that is said to have been eaten by ascetic practitioners who stayed in the mountains to long.
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いつも頼むアスパラのバター炒め。甘いアスパラに、たっぷりのバター、塩味が絶妙。アスパラの硬さ加減がまた最高にちょうどいい。

Always order asparagus sauteed with butter here.  The sweet asparagus, plenty of butter, and saltiness are perfect.  The hardness of the asparagus is also perfect.
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必ず頼む「ザンギ」、鶏の唐揚げ。唐揚げとレモン、そして北の勝。他に何も要らないと思わせる取り合わせ。無言になる一品。

Always order "Zangi", fried chicken.  Deep fried chicken, lemon, and the Kitanokatsu sakes.  The combination that makes think that don't need anything else.  It's a dish that leave all speechless.
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忘れてはいけない「ラーメンサラダ」。ちゃんと湯むきしたトマト、薄切した胡瓜にキャベツにラーメン、マヨネーズ風ドレッシング。実は手間がかかった一品で間違いなく文句無く美味しい。冷やし中華ではなく、ラーメンサラダ。

Would never forget the "Ramen Salad" here.  Carefully peeled tomatoes, thinly sliced cucumber, cabbage, ramen noodles, and mayonnaise-style dressing.  In fact, it's a dish that takes a lot of time and effort to prepare, and it's undoubtedly delicious.  It's not chilled Chinese noodles, but a ramen salad.

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いつも〆に頼むシンプルな糠漬けは品切れで、お漬け物の盛り合わせを頂く。しょっぱ過ぎず、かつボリューミーな糠漬けは毎回欠かさないお気に入り。

札幌で間違いなく最高の居酒屋の一つ。チャーミングな大将の安定した美味しいお料理で、空港トラブルをすっかり忘れた大満足の夜だった。ご馳走さまでした。

The simple Kasu pickles that usually have to finish the meals were out of stock, so got the pickle platter.  Not too salty, but still hearty, pickles here are the favorite, and would never miss them.  Definitely one of the best izakaya in Sapporo.  It was a very satisfying evening, and completely forgot about the trouble at the airport with the stable and delicious food prepared by the charming owner chef.  Thanks a lot for the meal! 
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