Hokkaido (7) Genghis Khan at Daruma

The place Hiro is standing is Susukino, the center of nightlife of Sapporo. The area is located south from the city center and about 15min walk from our hotel we are staying for the night. The large neon sign of Nikka Whiskey is the landmark of Susukino so if you are touring around this area, this is a must-to-take photo kind of place. lol


I asked what Hiro wanted for dinner. The answer was Genghis Khan. Genghis Khan is a name of a famous Mongolian emperor but in this case we are not talking about the emperor but a grilled mutton. This grilled mutton is a soul food for the Hokkaido people and one of thing you have to try when in Hokkaido. I had several place listed but decided to go to the most famous one because, 1) it was a walking distance from our hotel, 2) we wanted to sightsee the famous Susukino area and 3) the restaurant hasn’t changed it’s ambiance since they opened 68 years ago.


We took a walk using the underground passage and it was so huge. It seemed like there was another city underground. There are many famous underground passages in Japan, Nagoya, Osaka, Fukuoka and my hometown Kobe but Hokkaido’s underground was really big.


The restaurant I selected is called “Daruma” one of the oldest around this area with a history of 68 years. This place is really famous and I knew we would have to wait. When we got there, yes there were people lining out, checked the other branches and all was crowded. If it’s all crowded we should just line up at the flagship store, it’s once in a life kind of experience so we did. So we waited for 40 min in a cold, cold night but the wait was worth it.


The picture above is Genghis Khan that we had waited for. As soon we are seated, a new grill will be placed on top of the charcoal grill set right in front of us. The menu is very simple with the main of assorted mutton, expensive cut mutton and tenderloin cut mutton. Other than that its just several selection of side dishes, kimchi etc.


As soon as we entered, a new grilling pan is set on a hot coal set on our table. A piece of fat is placed on to of the grilling pan and vegetables are poured on the grill. A small serving of mutton will be served on a plate with thongs and so we start grilling. As you grill the meat, its oil will drizzle to the bottom to cook the veggies. The mutton was fresh and really good but the ambience was even better. The small space with a horseshoe shape counter seats just 14 people and all of us will be sitting side by side grilling our own thing.


Was this place worth the wait? Yes. Yes because the food was really good, I’m sure their are better places without all this hassle but the thing is that you have to experience the most famous place to understand the vibes and the culture of Genghis Khan right? That is the main point why we visited Daruma. To be continued >>>





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