Wednesday, November 30, 2016

[Hokkaido 2016] Day 6 - Dominica Soup Curry, Hokkaido Shine and Beer Fest!

My last day in Hokkaido and for the third time throughout that trip, it was raining....the urge to just curl up in my nice hostel bed was tempting. BUT then again, it was my last day in Sapporo and driving by a need for piping hot food, we headed out in search of soup curry.

This time we tried Dominica Soup Curry, a little hidden jem 15 minutes from our hostel. Located in the isolated hallway of an unsuspecting building, Dominica Soup Curry offered the most unlikely form an eatery with odd decorations and a tight seating space that can accommodate about 15 people at its peak hour. And even that meant elbows being bumped and rubbed occasionally.

But the food was however was worth the hunt and elbow-rubbing. My sister ordered the extra spicy soup curry with an add on of grilled cheese and what a delicious decision that was.

I would have regretted my tamer braised pork belly curry had I not enjoyed it so. Given that we did not have to wait at all for a table and our food came promptly, I very much prefer Dominica over Suage+.

With warm curry in our bellies, we headed on to the Hokkaido Shrine within the Maruyama park. A nice walk in the rain through the park led us to the shrine and by luck, we witnessed a wedding photo-taking session in progress.

With time to kill, we took the train to the Sapporo Factory - what used to be a beer brewery and factory turned shopping mall. Personally other than its attractive red exterior, the inside mall left much to be desired.

From there, we took to the streets and strolled our way back to the Sapporo TV tower for the night view of the city. Our tickets from three days ago included the evening entry as well and saved us the hassle of having to queue again for the tickets.

With lights turning on across the city like fairies against the dark, it was a lovely sight to see. Unfortunately, the cloudy weather hindered our attempt to see the sunrise from the tower. It was from the tower that we spotted our next destination.

Right at the other end of Odori park was a German Beer Fest and where there was beer, there was pork sausages so we as a family brisk-walked through the cold to the festival venue. At the festival, it was beer galore for my family (I don't drink) as there were all sorts of beers available to try. It wasn't free of course but my sister had five glasses of beers and got to take home the glass at the end of the event so I would say it was worth it!

The walk back to the hostel was a funny one with my five glasses booze drinker sister needing to find a toilet midway through and us stumbling through a drizzle for pudding. None of us even remembered that we needed to pack for our early flight out the next day.

Sapporo was very different from the other parts of Japan I've visited mainly the Kansai area and Tokyo mainly due to the western cultural influence across its structures and its relatively young history. Sapporo and the rest of Hokkaido was still very much reliant on its natural beauty to draw in the tourists all year around and I dare say, let it remain as it is.

Well, that and its soup curry... That shit is awesome.

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