Hakodate is renowned as the squid capital of Japan. Their famous specialty is iki ika (squid that has been sliced up while alive). Its transparent meat and crunchy texture are like no other squid that you've ever had! You can see the lights from fishing boats floating on the sea within the fantastic night view of Hakodate. In the morning, these boats come back to shore with hauls of squid, which are then served up at various locations. When in Hakodate, you can't miss out on their incredibly fresh squid! Here is a round-up of the best restaurants where you can partake in this delight.
1. Hakodate Asaichi Aji no Ichiban
This is a popular restaurant located inside Hakodate Asaichi (Hakodate Morning Market). This 34-year-old place offers a variety of superb delicacies like iki ika and homemade ikura (salmon roe). It is guaranteed to be a super-fresh stock of seafood at any time of the day. In particular, their iki ika, caught that very morning, has a crispy texture that makes it more delicious than any other squid! There's a lot of choices, including ramen (noodles) and ika-meshi (squid stuffed with rice).
Their [Isaribi-don], which is a rice bowl dish that combines fresh squid with ikura that even celebrities love, also comes highly recommended.
It's located opposite of Donburi Yokocho in Hakodate Morning Market.
Hakodate Asaichi Aji no Ichiban
: [May - October] 6:30 am - 3:00 pm
[November - April] 7:00 am - 2:00 pmClosed
*Closed only on New Year's Day and January 2Average price
: 1,300 JPY
*Ramen and rice bowl set meals are also availableAccess
: Exit Hakodate Station and turn right, heading to Hakodate Asaichi. It's opposite of Donburi Yokocho.Address
: 11-13, Wakamatsu-cho, Hakodate-shi, Hokkaido (Map
)More Details Reservation
2. Uomasa Goryokaku Main Branch
Following the concept of providing local ingredients for local consumption, this seafood izakaya (Japanese pub) serves super-fresh ingredients like vegetables, meat, and fish that were procured from local producers. This means anything you have here will give you the genuine taste of Hakodate! As for their iki ika, only the selected high-quality squid is sliced and served sashimi-style.
Their iki ika sashimi comes with the squid's goro (innards). Mix the goro into some shoyu (soy sauce) and dip the squid sashimi in it.
It's a 4-minute walk from Goryokaku-koen-mae Stop. It is also close to many tourist attractions!
Uomasa Goryokaku Main Branch
: [Monday - Thursday, Sunday, National Holidays] 5:30 pm - 12:00 am (L.O. 11:00 pm)
[Friday, Saturday, Day before National Holidays] 5:30 pm - 1:00 am (L.O. 12:00 am)Closed
*Always open except for the beginning and end of the yearAverage price
: [Dinner] 5,000 JPY
*Courses are priced from 5,000 JPY. Course meals with iki ika are priced from 5,500 JPY.Access
: 161m from Goryokaku-koen-mae StationAddress
: 4-8, Hon-cho, Hakodate-shi, Hokkaido (Map
3. Ikkatei Tabiji
Here, squid is fished out of a fish tank and prepared right before your eyes! This popular restaurant is inside Donburi Yokocho, which is a famed area inside Hakodate Morning Market. You can't go wrong with any of their delicacies, which are prepared specially to show off their fresh seafood. Their signature dish is the [Iki Ika Odori-don], which uses squid procured from nearby waters. They fish the squid straight from a fish tank and prepare it right in front of you. The squid will keep dancing both in the rice bowl and in your mouth!
Their crab gratin, which is loaded with crab, is procured from another place that they manage.
Despite being located inside the lively Hakodate Morning Market, it is a calming and relaxing restaurant.
: 5:00 am - 3:00 pm
*Changes to 6:00 am - 2:00 pm from late October to late AprilClosed
: NoneAverage price
: 840 JPY
*Their flagship dish, [Iki Ika Odori-don], costs 1,890 JPY.Access
: 1-minute walk from the West Exit of Hakodate Station. It is located in the building right in front of the station, which is in Donburi Yokocho in Hakodate Morning Market.Address
: Donburi Yokocho Market, 9-15, Wakamatsu-cho, Hakodate-shi, Hokkaido (Map
4. Hakodate Dining Gaya
Gaya only uses products from Hokkaido, with their main focus on fresh seafood from Hakodate. Right in front of Hakodate Station, they serve fresh fish caught in nearby waters, as well as other Hokkaido delicacies. Lively iki ika is caught from their fish tank and sliced up into thin noodle shapes, which are then eaten as sashimi. There's also a crab tank, so don't miss this chance to enjoy Hakodate's fresh seafood!
Savor freshness that you'll only find at morning markets! You'll find plenty of fresh ingredients from nearby waters and Hokkaido here, including iki ika!
Conveniently located right in front of Hakodate Station. It is also incredibly close to Hakodate Morning Market.
Hakodate Dining Gaya
: Lunch 11:30 am - 2:30 pm (L.O. 2:00 pm), Dinner 5:00 pm - 12:00 am (L.O. 11:00 pm)
*Operating hours are subject to change depending on the seasonClosed
: IrregularAverage price
: 2,000 JPYAccess
: 2-minute walk from the West Exit of Hakodate Station. From there, head towards Mt. Hakodate and you'll eventually see Gaya's sign. It's by the entrance of Hakodate Morning Market.Address
: 9-14, Wakamatsu-cho, Hakodate-shi, Hokkaido (Map
)More Details Reservation
Enjoy deliciousness galore in Hakodate! Loved by locals, this popular izakaya offers menus that have been created with great attention to detail. Their seafood comes from the coast of Hakodate and their vegetables are grown in their own farm. They stock only the best ingredients available each day. Of course, this applies to their iki ika as well. Come here for fresh iki ika!
They have their own farm where they grow their veggies! This is the [Bakudan] - a popular dish made with a whole onion.
It has stayed on a street in Hakodate's Goryokaku area for 15 years. Locals love [Jiro]!
: [Weekdays, Saturday, National Holidays, Day before National Holidays] 5:30 pm - 12:00 am (L.O. 11:30 pm)Closed
: SundayAverage price
: 3,000 JPY
*Course meals are priced from 3,800 JPY.Access
: 1 minute walk from Chuo-byoin-mae Stop. It's diagonally opposite of Hakodate Central General Hospital.Address
: 4-21, Hon-cho, Hakodate-shi, Hokkaido (Map
6. Yamasan Michisita-Shouten
This is a well-established iki ika restaurant located inside Donburi Yokocho in Hakodate Morning Market. It's been there since 1955. Especially worthy of mention is a Hokkaido specialty called [Noodle-shaped Iki Ika Sashimi]. It's so fresh that you can even eat the eyeballs! It's a sublime dish that you should try at least once in your life.
All their ingredients are selected by a seafood pro! It's renowned for giving customers a high level of satisfaction.
You can find it inside Donburi Yokocho in Hakodate Morning Market. Enjoy a delicious meal in its lively atmosphere!
: [Spring] Lunch 6:00 am - 2:00 pm, Dinner 5:00 pm - 9:00 pm
[Winter] Lunch 7:00 am - 2:00 pm, Dinner 6:00 pm - 9:00 pmClosed
: Get off at Hakodate Station and walk 1 minute towards the morning market.Address
: Inside Donburi Yokocho in Hakodate Morning Market, 9-15, Wakamatsu-cho, Hakodate-shi, Hokkaido (Map
7. Hakodate Kaiyoutei Main Branch
This is the first restaurant to introduce fish tanks made to contain live squid in Hakodate. The seafood served in this restaurant known to be extremely fresh, and popular among both locals and tourists. Here, iki ika is served "odori-zukuri" (dancing sashimi) style.
They use lots of seasonal and locally-produced ingredients to let customers savor all the flavors of Hakodate.
It is only 3 minutes on foot from Goryokaku-koen-mae Stop. It is peaceful and relaxing, which is typical of well-established restaurants.
Hakodate Kaiyoutei Main Branch
: Lunch 12:00 am - 12:00 am, Dinner 5:00 pm - 11:00 pm
*Established 32 years ago. It was the first place to introduce iki ika sashimi in Hakodate 25 years ago, and it is currently the cheapest place to offer it in the city.Closed
*If Monday is a substitute holiday, then it will be closed on Monday instead.Average price
: 3,800 JPY
*Food in their party courses are priced from 3,000 JPY. Their 2-hour all-you-can-drink costs 1,500 JPY.Access
: 3-minute walk from Goryokaku-koen-mae StopAddress
: 7-5, Hon-cho, Hakodate-shi, Hokkaido (Map
Disclaimer: All information is accurate at time of publication.