Thursday, July 28, 2016

Scallop, sea urchin, raw squid, squid ink ice cream, and Yubari melon at Hakodate Morning Market 函館朝市, Hakodate Hokkaido JAPAN

Fresh clam (scallop)
Delicious scallop!
Sea urchin 
This is the first time to visit Hakodate Morning Market ( 函館朝市, Hakodate Asaichi) in Hakodate city, Hokkaido Prefecture. This is the spot for both locals and tourist to get their fresh seafood. The market is full of fresh seafood that you can buy them alive, or sometimes they can cook it for you. You can also fish your own squid and they will prepare and cut it for you so you can enjoy fresh raw squid! For souvenirs, dried seafood like dried squid or shrimp chips are very common and easy and light to carry around. NOW, let's go discover what I found at the morning market of Hakodate!

outdoor shops
Station Two Market (Eki-ni ichiba 駅二市場) an indoor area for shops and fishing squid 
indoor shops
A pool full of swimming squid 
Hakodate Morning Market is basically a neighborhood for selling seafood and local specialty. There are both outdoor and indoor shops. One of the most interesting thing to do is to fish your own squid which is only around 500 yen. (They give you a 200 yen discount coupon for buying anything from the indoor shops too.) After fishing your squid, staffs will clean and prepare the squid for you right away. Serving with soy sauce and grated ginger, you can now enjoy fresh squid that you just caught!

I found fresh squid more translucent than the non-fresh ones
Next, we stepped out to the exciting outdoor shops. There are lots of seafood to choose from, but I actually stopped by an ice cream shop because I can't wait to try my first Hokkaido ice cream! The prefecture is famous for their dairy such as milk, cheese, ice cream, etc.

ice cream shop
Squid ink + vanilla ice cream
This shop has their specialty ice cream flavor: squid ink! It might sound very exciting, but the flavor is actually very subtle, no fishy or seafood taste. What I am surprised about is the condensed flavor of milk in this ice cream.

Next to the ice cream shop, there is a small outdoor grilling vendor with fresh clams.

Fresh clam that staff just picked up from the running water

cooking scallop with grill + torch fire!
80-90% cooked scallop
The fresh clam was cleaned and cooked on grill for about 5-8 minutes. It was seasoned with soy sauce in mid-way of cooking and a torch was used to boil the sauce and clam's broth exponentially. The result is an "almost cooked" scallop, which remain the freshness of the scallop!

uni (sea urchin)
Sea urchin from Hokkaido is definitely another seafood to recommend. To tell you the truth, sea urchin is not my favorite seafood. It is usually too creamy and filling. The flavors are too dense and overwhelming to me. HOWEVER, the sea urchin here is completely the opposite. it is a lot lighter, the flavor is a bit sweet. The taste of briny ocean feels natural and subtle. It is still creamy, but a lot easier to go down.

"Yubari King" melon

one slice of sweet & juicy "Yubari King" melon!
Do you know melon is another most famous food in Hokkaido? Averagely many of their melons are around 3500 to 5000 yen each. Out of all, "Yubari King" is one of the most reputable farm for the finest melons! (Yubari is a small town near Sapporo in the Hokkaido Prefecture) 

*Fun fact: The year in May, a new highest bidding price was recorded 3 million yen (27,295 USD) for a pair of Yubari melons, beating the 2.5 million bidding price in 2008. Check out related article HERE!

It is really something that I had to try to know why. So I bought a slice of "Yubari King" melon (300 yen) and then I realized everything make sense. It is very juicy, the sweetness is just right, the texture is refreshing and a bit crunchy too. I already know that I will never get this kind of melon back at home :(

From this trip to Hakodate Morning Market, I agree with a lot of people that seafood in Hakodate is really something. I would definitely visit this small town again for more seafood hunt and Hakodate ramen next time!

Hakodate Morning Market 函館朝市

Phone:Not Available

January to April 6:00 to 12:00 ( However, some stores until around 14:00 ) May to December 5:00 to 12:00 ( However, some stores until around 15:00 )



  1. i love the fresh melons, and some of the food, not raw though.

    1. Yes!! Fresh melons are the best! :)) I wish I can have some again soon!

  2. I feel some jealous of you! what a trip! I never been in a place like that, looks very interesting to try all of that, good meals and also a great experience!

    1. Thanks for your comment! I feel fortunate to be able to have trip like this too! I plan for this trip quite a long while back, and finally got to see and experience it in person. I hope you are going to plan out a trip for yourself to these great places too! Maybe a new year trip in 2017! ^_^

  3. I love squid. I've even tried the squid chips but squid-ink ice cream? That's a must. I have to try it. Thanks for your fun foodie details.

  4. Next time I'm in Japan, I may stop by just for the clams. It sounds wonderful to have a clam right off the grill.

  5. I love the photos in this post! My mouth is watering...

  6. I really want to try the squid icecream >X< the mellon and torched scallop v-v I am super hungry right now too T_T fwah. Lucky lucky <3

  7. OMG The Hakodate Morning Market is soo cool !

  8. Seafood in Japan is always something special!

  9. Want to visit Hokkaido. But not sure if summer or winter is better time.

  10. I'm trying so hard to imagine the squid ink ice cream and I just can't... actually, maybe I'm trying not to, lol. I know you said it doesn't taste like fish but I just can't fathom it. I would love to get my daughter to try it though she loves ice cream.

  11. I wonder how squid ink ice cream tastes.

  12. Cargo Master is an Australian international freight company , renowned for delivering, flexible cost effective air and sea freight forwarding services. international freight

  13. Our import sea freight service is available to all Australian capital cities.

  14. Sea freight consolidation services for pacific islands freight INTERNATIONAL SHIPPING SYDNEY

  15. Freight forwarders offer several value-added services, including packaging and labeling, according to customs regulations. SBT offers a range of freight forwarding, cargo ship, sea freight, and other logistics services. cargo ship

  16. Cream chargers are very user-friendly. Nosboss