Another day at Sapporo!
We were off bright and early to the Chocolate Factory.
Ishiya Chocolate Factory
2-2-11-36 Miyanosawa Nishi-ku, Sapporo, Hokkaido 063-0059, Japan
Hours: 9:00 to 18:00 (entry until 17:00)
Closed: No closing days
Admission: 600 yen
To get there, take the Subway – Tozai Line (orange line) to Miyanosawa Station and it’s a 5-10 minute walk away.
It’s a really beautiful red brick building set against a mountainous backdrop! Would imagine it’s just as beautiful in summer and spring. In case the logo on the van doesn’t ring a bell, Ishiya Chocolate Factory produces one of Hokkaido’s most well known souvenirs – some people call it the “white lover’s chocolate”. Essentially it’s a thin piece of chocolate (dark or white) sandwiched between two crispy, crumbly biscuits. BLISS.
The entrance seemed somewhat like a souvenir shop. You pay 600 yen at the cashier to get a “passport” (pictured below) and of course, a biscuit to nom while you’re viewing the exhibitions. Then you take a lift up to the exhibits and viewing gallery.
OK I’d have to admit I wondered why they called it a chocolate factory instead of a biscuit factory. I guess it’s more interesting to delve into the details on how chocolate is processed. Anyways it’s pretty educational! There are like 3 highlights, one about the history of chocolate, one about processing chocolate, another, on how the ishiya biscuit is made. If you can see from the last photo above, we were given an aerial view of the entire process. they are REALLY strict on QC!! we saw so many biscuits being thrown out for being the wrong colour. at the end of it after it’s packaged into the plastic wrappers they’re weighed and if they’re not satisfactory, they’re thrown out as well!
What a waste of biscuits, but I guess it’s necessary…
At the top floor is a workshop space where people can decorate their own ishiya biscuits, a cafe and… a gramophone exhibition. rather out of point.
Check out the intricately designed sugar sculptures and some of the yummy pastries they had!
Too enticed by the view, we decided to sit down and enjoy some snacks.
The best hot chocolate I’ve ever had! It’s not overly thick and you can tell by the taste that good quality cocoa was used. They provide a little bottle of orange liquor for you to add in to enhance the taste but it was rather bland and really wasn’t necessary. Good enough on its own. The cake was heavenly by itself as well. Softttt and creaaaamy.
Oh yes there’s also a lolly place (which reminds me of Sticky) and an antique toy exhibition on the 2nd floor. but we breezed through those since we wanted to spend some time at Otaru, which I’ll save for another post.
It was snowing realllly heavily by the time we got out! But i really miss the feeling of seeing snow fall and engulfing the roads right now.
Till next time!