Monday, March 26, 2018

Cavalock and The First Sapporo Board Game Sighting

Not everything this trip was planned. Yah, there were several places that we wanted to check out but there were more than a few spontaneous gems that we discovered while exploring Sapporo and Tokyo this trip. We stumbled upon this coffee and soft cream stand along the Sitatte Sapporo underground mall walk. After walking and window shopping for ages at the underground mall, this small Marumi Coffee stand was a welcome sight.

Now you can't go all the way to Sapporo without trying some of their wonderful dairy products especially their soft cream. The Baker-at-Home loved the coffee so much, the aroma, the roast and all that, that she bought the beans back. We bought coffee beans/powder from a whole buncha other places too. Which kinda got me worried cos everyone knows that's how the Cartels get their shipments through customs! Y'know, trying to fool the sniffer dogs with the strong coffee blend aroma? I was like, am I gonna get stopped just cos my luggage smells like a Starbucks warehouse? By the way, we didn't step into a single Starbucks this entire trip.

Well, another wonderful joint we discovered by accident was Tokachi Butadon Ippin Sapporo at Stellar Place, the mall that's near where we were staying at JR Tower Hotel. Absolutely famished after all that walking and window-shopping again, saw this long queue and figured its gotta be good. It's a rice and grilled pork resturant that is apparently very popular here in Sapporo. And you'll even get a full view of the strips of pork being grilled on an open fire too as you wait in the queue.

Interesting menu they got here too. You get to choose how much rice, pork, sauce you want per serving and it says it's a specialty of Obihiro in Tokachi, Hokkaido. The meat was beautifully seasoned although I would have liked mine with more sauce, I should have picked 'more sauce' when ordering but we learn. It still tastes great and in this cold weather, definitely welcomed.

"The original style of Buta Don was developed in the beginning of the Showa era (1926 - 1989), and was first served in many bistros in Tokachi about 50 years ago."

"As Tokachi is a cold place, the fat of the pork has been preferred to warm up the chilled body."

Well, I did managed to drop by some game shops or at least the board game section of major retail shops like Bic Camera and Yodabashi. Here's a shot of the single board game shelf at Bic Camera in Sapporo. I know, extremely limited selection but if you are a board game fan, you would notice a couple gems like Imaginarium and Carta Impera Victoria. Both new games are eagerly anticipated in the West but aren't widely available there yet but are already on sale in Japan. I would have bought Imaginarium but the possible lack of English rules and huge box set made me ditch the idea.

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