Everyone who loves coffee in Sapporo knows MORIHICO, a famous coffee shop in Sapporo. Last year, when I visited the affiliated Cafe Atelier Morihiko in Nishi 11-Chome for morning coffee, I thought, “Next time, I’ll visit the main shop”. When I had the opportunity to visit Sapporo again this year, I immediately made plans to visit the restaurant in my schedule during my stay.
According to my research on the Internet, Morihico’s main shop is located in Maruyama Park, which is called a high-class residential area in Sapporo. In fact, walking from the nearest station to the restaurant, I found it to be a cozy place with a very calm atmosphere, while being easily accessible from JR Sapporo Station and Susukino.
After a while, you will see a mysterious building covered with greenery like the Koshien Stadium, which looks like something out of a Ghibli movie, approaching from a distance. That unique looking building is our destination, Morihico Head Shop…
An old house café perfect for a solitary solitary moment… this is what Morihico Head Shop is like.
When I arrived at Morihico Head Shop one Sunday afternoon after 3:00 p.m., there were three customers sitting on a bench waiting to enter the storefront. Perhaps due to the relaxing surroundings, I did not feel any sense of urgency like those waiting in line at popular ramen stores in the city. It was really a laid-back atmosphere, and we were enjoying the waiting time together. I wrote my name in the name book, and after about 10 minutes of waiting around the restaurant, a female waitress came out from inside the restaurant and invited me in.
The shop is an old private house café, a self-renovated wooden house built right after World War II, with a total of 16 seats on the first and second floors. I was taken to the second floor, just up the stairs, and the side of the stairwell was a quaint view of the coffee brewing area from above…
The lighting in the restaurant is rather dark, which matches the dark brown pillars and beams, creating a very calm and antique atmosphere. The clientele is mainly couples and young women, but no one was talking loudly, perhaps in consideration of the atmosphere of the restaurant, and it was very quiet. This is a great place to relax alone without worrying about the time. Unfortunately, Morihico Head Shop is limited to one hour during busy times, so you can’t relax that much, but if time permits, it would be great to bring in a paperback book and read with a cup of coffee in hand.
Is there such a thing as iced coffee? I was shocked when I took a sip of Morihico’s water-drizzled coffee, which is available only in limited quantities.
What I ordered at Morihico this time was the limited-quantity iced coffee, “Mizudashi Coffee” (cold brew coffee, price: 700 yen + tax) and the most popular cake menu item, “Gateau Fromage” (price: 420 yen + tax). I have to confess here that I love Dutch coffee. As soon as I opened the menu and saw the words “Mizudashi Coffee,” I thought to myself, “This is it! I thought, “This is it! I visited the store late in the afternoon, so there was a possibility that they might have sold out, but I was glad to see that they still had some left!
After about 5 minutes of waiting after ordering, the iced coffee and cheesecake that arrived in front of me looked like this. Neither of them are orthodox in appearance, or are aiming for the recently trendy Insta-evidence…
I was really shocked when I took a sip of this water-brewed coffee. This Dutch coffee is so fruity. No kidding, “Is there grape juice in it?” I thought, “Is there grape juice in it? The mellow aroma and moderate sourness spread from my mouth to my nose, and the coffee-like bitterness came gradually after it passed down my throat.
The menu says that the coffee is made by extracting only the pure good ingredients over a period of 10 hours… “It has a special taste that makes you think there is a bit of alcohol in it. If I were to describe it in terms of alcohol, it would be red wine. But it’s more than a “little”. If it were just the aroma, it could really compete with red wine. I was so surprised by the flavor of this coffee that I impulsively bought the beans used for this coffee when I left the store. I was so impressed with the flavor of the coffee that when I left the shop, I impulsively bought some of the beans used to make this coffee! There is no way I can reproduce the same taste at home…
I was so impressed with the water brewed coffee that I wanted to have another cup. I wanted to order another cup, but I was also interested in the “Mori no Shizuku”, a special blend that is listed as a “limited edition” coffee at the main shop, so I ordered a second cup of Mori no Shizuku hot. Compared to the cold brewed coffee, the Mori no Shizuku has a more refreshing taste, with a hint of sweetness amidst the aroma and moderate bitterness.
The aroma is very elegant, and the coffee disappears quickly without leaving a lingering taste on the tongue, so you end up sipping it over and over again and quickly emptying your coffee cup. It has a completely different character from watered coffee, but it was a good cup of coffee that made me want to have another cup of coffee as many times as I wanted.
I left Morihico after spending less than an hour with these two cups of coffee. The price is quite a bit higher than Starbucks, but if you can enjoy such great coffee, it is understandable why it has become so popular among coffee lovers in Sapporo. As one would expect from a place that has been awarded the “100 Best Cafes on the Tabeog” for two consecutive years from 2021 to 2022.
By the way, can I order the Dutch coffee I drank this time at other Morihico affiliated restaurants? I don’t think Dutch coffee was on the menu when I visited Atelier Morihico last year… According to the store’s website, there are a total of 11 affiliated stores in Sapporo and Asahikawa as of September 2023. If you are also a Dutch coffee lover, if you have a chance to go near one of Morihico’s affiliated stores, you should make time to rush into the store by force!
The gâteau chocolat was unfortunately treated as an extra because the coffee was so amazing this time. The dough is fine and fluffy, with a slightly soufflé-like texture. The sweetness and richness of the cheese is moderate, and the texture is refreshing, so you can keep eating it and it will fit in your stomach without getting tired of it. With this cheesecake, you could probably eat a whole cake by yourself…
Examples of other menu items at Morihico Head Shop (prices do not include tax)
- Gateau chocolat 420 yen
- Chiboust 480 yen
- Pound cakes (chocolat, green tea, marron, oranges) 230 yen
- Blueberry Cheese Tart 550 yen
- Chocolate Banane Chiffon 400 yen
- Cafe au Lait (hot or iced) 730 yen
- Earl Grey (hot or iced) 700 yen
Note: Drinks can be taken out. Bring your own tumbler and get 30% off…
Coffee beans to-go, mail order, and hometown tax payment are also available… Access to Morihico Head Shop is a 5-minute walk from the nearest station, Maruyama Koen Station on the Sapporo Municipal Subway Tozai Line.
At the Morihico Head Shop like this, coffee beans are sold next to the cash register, so you can take home the coffee beans used in your favorite coffee. If you miss out on buying coffee beans at the store, you can still order them online at the online store. Of course, they also accept gifts, so it’s the perfect gift for your coffee-loving acquaintances.
More to the point, you can get a set of Morihico coffee beans and drip bags through Furusato Tax Payment if you use Rakuten. If you are interested in Morihico’s coffee beans, there is no reason not to use this service.
Now, here are the details of the store. Restaurant data is here…
Morihico Head Shop Out of 5.
Address: 26-2-18 Minami 2-jo Nishi, Chuo-ku, Sapporo, Hokkaido, 064-0802, Japan
Phone number: 0800-111-4883
Business hours: 9:00-20:00 (open from 8:00 a.m. on weekends and holidays)
Closed: Year-end and New Year holidays only
Parking: 9 spaces available (shared with other stores)
Credit card payment: Accepted (PayPay, electronic money, and transportation system IC are also accepted)
P.S. If you are looking for a great cafe in Hokkaido, please stop by this article…