After getting back from Otaru I went straight to information. I needed to figure out where to meet for my tour the following morning, where to catch the bus and the times for getting back to the airport to catch my 7:40am flight, and where to go to get the local specialty ramen.
Turns out there’s a ramen alley called Ganso Ramen Yokocho which has been around since the 1950’s. But it was on the other side of one of the parks which was already a bit of a hike from the station. (It’s also near Susukino station, I was too hungry to go far.) So instead I went to Ramen Republic which was on the 10th floor of the ESTA complex located next to the station.
It was fun. I liked all the decorations. There was a ramen shrine.
There was also a ramen train and a souvenir store.
All around were little ramen shops, that when I went weren’t particularly busy but as soon as I got my food and especially when I left were insanely packed. The woman at the information station had given me a map and gave me some suggestions. I went to Sora ramen which had been one she circled.
It took me awhile to find it because I couldn’t figure out which entrance I had gone in according to the map. But eventually I found it. Sapporo has it’s own unique type of ramen called miso ramen.
Miso ramen is a bit oily from a combination of lard in the broth and the addition of butter. The one I ordered came with corn, a hard boiled egg, green onions, ginger, garlic and pork. It was very good and nice to just sit and eat something a bit less sweet then everything else I’d had the entire day.
Ramen Republic at ESTA Sapporo is open from 11am until 10pm. (The shopping center opens at 10am) Last orders are probably around 9pm/9:30pm.