Higashi Hokkaido Food Trail
No. 2 Garden TrailFurano/Biei - Asahikawa - SounkyoA trip to go out of your way and eat refined gourmet food with natural ingredients
This Route's Delicious Details, according to food writer Yuki Konishiト
Vast fields of lavender, flowerbeds that scream of a gardener's instinct, rustically beautiful budding crops... This popular flowery trail focuses on letting you enjoy the delicious taste of vegetables from the rural landscape. With a temperature that fluctuates greatly depending on whether it's day or night, these vegetables' tastes are as strong as the plants themselves. You'll see a great new side of these vegetables as you sample authentic French and Italian cuisine, as well as visit farm restaurants. In addition, the area is also dotted with sake breweries and wineries, so you can enjoy the lovely marriage of drinks and gourmet food. The main city of the region, Asahikawa, has always been home to a beloved food culture, so come and take a bite for yourself!
Garden TrailFurano/Biei - Asahikawa - Sounkyo
No. 2 Garden Trail
- Where you live -> (Asahikawa Airport/New Chitose Airport) -> Furano (lodgings)
- Furano -> Biei (lodgings)
- Biei -> Asahikawa -> Kamikawa/Sounkyo (lodgings)
- Kamikawa/Sounkyo -> (Asahikawa Airport/New Chitose Airport) -> where you live
Tourist Attractions around Garden Trail
This is a trail where you can see the Hokkaido-like scenery that anyone has once imagined such as gently sloping hills, lavender fields blooming like purple carpets, and vast plains. Even an ordinary farm sight seen through the train window becomes an art in this area. Let’s go and enjoy animal watching in Asahiyama Zoo in Asahikawa which is famous for “Behavior Exhibition” and Sahoro Resort Bear Mountain where wild brown bears live.
Cuisines and Food around Garden Trail
Have a tasty and beautifully dished up cuisine whose main food is the sweet vegetables produced under the climate where the temperature difference is extreme. Many cafes and restaurants, whose owners know the ingredients inside out, gather here to introduce the unique aspects of food that you haven’t encountered yet. You can have freshly-picked vegetables at popular farm-to-table restaurants run by the farmers.
Popular restaurants with local delicacies you'll want to try!
Fratello di Mikuni [Kamikawa]
A garden restaurant managed by Japan's representative master of French cuisine, and Hokkaido's leading cook for Italian. Using local produce and ingredients gathered from all over Hokkaido, it proposes a "Hokkaido cuisine" that maintains the essence of French and Italian cooking. In addition, the location gives restaurant goers a grand view of the Daisetsuzan Mountains. This restaurant is actually a French-style auberge, making it also perfect for dinner.
|Business hours||11:00～14:30 18:00～20:00
Closed Mondays and during the winter season
|Location||Asahigaoka, Kikusui, Kamikawa-cho, Kamikawa-gunGoogle Maps|
Restaurant Asperges [Biei]
A French restaurant starring Biei-grown vegetables. The chef has a goal of "bringing the most out of these vegetables," and proves it with their work, painstakingly searching for the best way to cook and putting together a scrumptious, polished meal. The same building also houses Biei Senka, a shop selling vegetable samples.
|Business hours||11:00～16:00 17:00～20:00
Closed Wednesdays and during the winter season
|Location||Biei Senkanai, 2-chome, Omachi, Biei-cho, Kamikawa-gunGoogle Maps|
Must-eats on this route: Farm restaurants
Along our "garden trail," there are plenty of farm restaurants - in other words, stores opened by the farmers themselves. Using produce painstakingly grown by their own hands, they draw out flavor from their ingredients with simple meals. These restaurants are typically small and may be closed on certain days due to necessary farmwork, so please check whether the restaurant is open before you go.
Azemichi Yorimichi [Kamifurano]
A farm restaurant located right in the middle of Kamifurano's rural district, opened by a group of female farmers. One of their most popular items is their pot-au-feu, which seems to overflow with an abundance of vegetables.
Closed Wednesdays and during winter (January to mid-April)
|Location||Higashi 6 Sen Kita 16, Kamifurano-gun, Sorachi-gunGoogle Maps|
Must-eats on this route: Asahikawa's food culture
Hokkaido's second city, Asahikawa, has its own particular food culture. For example, Asahikawa ramen. It is distinguished by its broth, which combines seafood and pork to create a deep flavor with a light soy sauce aroma. Also familiar to locals are salted pig offal, a reminder of the city's prosperous history of pig farming, as well as the grilled chick, which involves grilling half the body of a young chicken. Due to its status as an important point connecting the Sea of Okhotsk and the Sea of Japan, it boasts high quality seafood despite being inland.
Using chicken from Hokkaido's Shiretoko region and taking your time to carefully grill it, shinkoyaki (grilled chick) is a must-eat. While the freshness of the ingredients is a given, this particular shop also makes its own salt, and uses high-grade charcoal produced from ubame oak.
|Location||4 Chome 15 Jo, Kaguraoka, Asahikawa-shiGoogle Maps|
Ramenya Hizo [Asahikawa]
At this shop, the delicious pork broth manages to be deep-bodied without having a strange aftertaste. They also offer original varieties, including the refreshing citrus-scented yuzunegishio (yuzu green onion salt) ramen, as well as the kamomiso (duck miso) ramen.
|Location||Rotary Building 1F, 7-2741-12, 8 Jodori, Asahikawa-shiGoogle Maps|
Popular stores you'll want to visit
After finishing renovations, this historical mansion was opened as a restaurant in 2014. Lunch is cooked from local Aibetsu mushrooms and soba, with a focus on brown rice and seasonal vegetables; at night, you can enjoy a banquet made from seasonal Hokkaido foods.
|Business hours||11:30～14:00 17:00～21:00
|Location||174, Honcho, Aibetsu-cho, Kamikawa-gunGoogle Maps|
Restaurant Bi-ble [Biei]
A French restaurant sitting on top of one of Biei's hills. On top of the delicious cuisine made from local Biei vegetables, the warm, fragrant bread and picturesque view of the wide fields all around are truly magnificent. It is recommended to make your booking for the affiliated accommodations several months in advance.
|Location||Hokuei Dai 2, Biei-cho, Kamikawa-gunGoogle Maps|
Genmai Musubi Chamise [Higashikawa]
Higashikawa, famous for its rice. 15 different types of onigiri (rice balls) can be prepared by cooking local rice in Higashikawa water. Get a taste as you enjoy the view of the rice fields.
Closed Mondays and Tuesdays
|Location||2, Nishi 4 Gokita, Higashikawa-cho, Kamikawa-gunGoogle Maps|
Furano Tomikawa [Furano]
A Furano Rokugo ramen shop, famous in Japan for its appearance in a classic television drama, Kita no kuni kara. Making "local foods only" into their motto, they take care to use local ingredients in their noodles and soup, and try to communicate the charm of Furano with every ingredient.
|Business hours||11:00～15:00 (Sat, Sun, holidays until 4:00pm)
Closed Wednesdays (open during July, August)
|Location||5, Rokugoshigaichi, Furano-shiGoogle Maps|