Niseko is famous for its powder dry and light snow. And because of its beautiful snowfalls, it has become one of the most popular ski destinations in Asia. It has four ski areas Higashiyama, Hirafu, Annupuri, and Hanazono. Aside from skiing, there are lots of things to enjoy, including Ziplining in Niseko’s valleys and mountains, golfing next to Mount Yotei, taking a relaxing bath in the Onsen hot spring, and trying out the local cuisine.
Speaking of cuisine, whether you are in the mood for a snack or a full course exotic delicacy, Niseko has the perfect range of restaurants and food joints for you. The restaurants that we’ve listed below have received positive reviews and have the best service in the industry.
1. Raku Ichi Soba - Expensive/ Exclusive
From a distance, you might write off Rakuichi Soba. It doesn’t have a large sign announcing its presence, and it’s housed in a chalet that you can access through a narrow wooden bridge. Also, as a 12-seat restaurant, it’s not one of the largest, but it has gained a huge following in the recent past.
It has a Japanese lunch menu that features hand-cut, cold and hot soba with accompaniments, including duck and vegetables.
All the meals are cooked to order, so you should be ready to wait. But the wait is worth it. If you’d like an elaborate meal, you have the option of ordering the Kaiseki dinner.
Reservations at this restaurant are only for dinner.
Raku Ichi is a name synonymous with luxury fine Japanese cuisine. This establishment beckoned visitors from all over the world to sample their food, particularly that of the soba noodle, made by master Tatsuru Rai. Now, Raku Ichi is going through a revolution. A new and exciting development is just around the corner that will bring with it refined apartments and condos. A reimagining of this sensational restaurant to create a revitalised spot where investors, diners, skiers and nature lovers alike can find solace, comfort and elegance.
2. Upashi Seta- Mid Price/ Homely & Welcoming
When you find yourself skiing and need to ease your hunger pangs and get back on the slopes, Upashi Seta has got you. Though it is small, it is cosy and has tasty comfort foods.
The restaurant has daily specials and allows reservations through Facebook messenger.
It's our onsight restaurant at SnowDog Village
3. Acorn - expensive
This is one of the most recent Japanese restaurants in Hirafu, Niseko. Its design and ambiance will warm your heart and help you create lasting memories with your loved ones.
The restaurant is the masterpiece of Takeshi Nagashima of the famous El Bulli. As such, you should prepare your palate for a heavenly food experience coupled with exemplary service. Their food is a work of art and ideal for Instagram shots.
The menu has an 8-course set menu. You can enjoy the foods with Japanese sake, tea, or wine.
4. Kamimura – expensive
Once you step into this restaurant, you will understand why tourists can't stop raving about it. It has the perfect romantic and intimate ambiance and serves French delicacies to complete the mood.
Each order is served with a different plate, matching and complementing the visual allure of the food. The restaurant does this to maximize the intensity of the food’s flavor.
During summer, you can make reservations for lunch and dinner. But during winter, you can only make dinner reservations.
5. Prativo – average/ Welcoming
Most of the restaurants/eateries in Niseko get a huge chunk of their income from the dining business. However, Prativo has carved out a niche for itself and gone ahead to set the bar high for other restaurants in the industry. It’s defined as a restaurant out of the city, which makes yummy yogurt. It also draws a large crowd with its semi-buffet value pack.
For dinner, the main dish is a choice between pasta, meat, and fish. Alternatively, you can help yourself to a large selection of their vegetables, appetizers, and desserts. What’s even better is that the restaurant has a picturesque view of Mount Yotei.
6. Boyoso– cheap/ Down To Earth
Boyoso serves incredible Japanese and Asian cuisine. Given their location (off the black ski trails), they can afford to be cheaper than most restaurants in its class within Niseko. And though the interior is somewhat old-fashioned, it is warm, and the service is impeccable.
They are busy during lunch and serve Ramen, Tempura, and Katsudon. They also serve one of the best kani-don in the region.
7. Sushi Hanayoshi- expensive
This is a popular sushi joint in Niseko. Tourists love the seafood sourced from different parts in Hokkaido, especially Suttsu and Iwanai fishing ports. The food quality is top-notch, as is the customer service.
Aside from the fresh seafood, the flounder and the bluefish are matured to help boost their taste. The sushi toppings are perfect with Akita-Komachi (a brand of rice with red vinegar). Their sushi rice is hand formed and falls apart in the mouth like a deck of cards.
Though they have a Japanese atmosphere, the restaurant has English speaking staff to cater to the foreigners who dine in their space.
8. La Villa Lupicia– expensive
This restaurant offers a fine dining experience. It has both dinner and lunch menus with a dessert buffet and salad bars. It combines ingredients from Hokkaido to come up with international and sumptuous dishes. If you’d like to make a reservation, you should do it three days in advance.
You can opt to have your tea and homemade bread in the café section or on the go.
The restaurant is open all year round and closes during selected times of the year.
9. The Barn by Odin – Expensive
The restaurant is set in a stunning real estate inspired by traditional farm architecture with deep roots in Hokkaido. It offers an excellent dining experience in Niseko with warm hospitality and mouthwatering French cuisine.
They have a range of fresh ingredients, including wines that they source from different parts of the world.
If you are adventurous enough to try out new cocktails, your time in this restaurant will be memorable.
10. Niseko Ramen Kazahana – cheap/Easy Going
There is something that you cannot afford not to try when on holiday in Niseko. The fluffy and creamy potato ramen by Niseko Ramen Kazahana is one of them. If you have the stomach for it, you can try the spicy ramen challenge.
Unfortunately, the restaurant doesn’t take reservations.
Whether you are on a budget or not, finding a fine restaurant to dine in Niseko is not a walk in the park. However, with the above guide, you know exactly where to go when you crave different cuisine and want a specific ambience and view.