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Archive for December, 2010

Lucky Pierrot is a fast food restaurant chain only found in Hakodate, Hokkaido which serves some seriously tasty burgers and fries. We stopped there for a late dinner on our way around the northern most island of Japan, and only an incoming hurricane stopped us from going there again on the way back to mainland Honshu. Believe me, since we got back, I’ve looked for other locations, hoping in vain to eat there again. Unfortunately the chiikigentei 地域限定 or limited to region status of Lucky Pierrot is no joke. They have over 10 locations, none of which are outside of Hakodate.

While searching for Lucky Pierrot online, I was surprised to read that the restaurant chain has had some controversy in the past, mostly because they had a whale meat burger on the menu. The hunting of whales is a touchy issue between Japan and the rest of the world, and in general, I try to avoid eating things that are on the endangered species list. To be honest though, I did not even notice the くじら kujira whale burger on the menu, because I was too busy trying to wrap my head around how one restaurant can serve hamburgers, curry rice, and spring rolls on the same menu. Looking at their website online now, it seems they no longer serve a whale burger, though they do have a scallop burger, a sweet and sour pork burger and a Genghis Khan (lamb) burger on the menu.

Serious environmental issues aside, the food we did eat was good. Very good. Which is probably why Lucky Pierrot has won the best regional hamburger restaurant in Japan award for multiple years running. (Yes, there is a ranking for that.)

The Chinese Chicken Burger is their #1 selling menu item. It’s 3 large pieces of chicken deep fried and covered in what tastes like kung pao sauce (hence the Chinese part, I suppose) sandwiched with lettuce and copius amount of mayonaisse, in a sesame seed bun. The slightly spicy and sweet sauce complimented the freshly fried chicken, and the chewy bun was the perfect thing to contain the messy sandwich. I would have gladly eaten the chicken just by itself, but the combination of bun, lettuce, mayo and chicken was really satisfying.

I could almost feel my arteries shaking in fear, but pressed on and also tried the Lucky Pierrot special fries. From the menu photo, my friend thought they might be the elusive poutine. However, I was pleasantly surprised to get freshly fried thick cut french fries topped with not the conventional gravy and cheese curds, but a concentrated curry sauce and a mild cheese sauce. It reminded me of eating cheesy chips after a night out, the cheese complimenting the sweet Japanese style curry very well.

I couldn’t leave the shop without one of Lucky Pierrot’s shakes, which come in the normal vanilla, chocolate and strawberry flavours, as well as some seasonal varieties, including this black sesame shake that I ordered. I love all things black sesame, or 黒ごま kurogoma , and this shake was perfect. The shake was thick enough to hold a straw upside down, and had flecks of ground black sesame seeds stired. Don’t let the greyish color of the shake throw you off, it was really delicious.

I was sad we didn’t have the chance to go back so I could try the yuzu ,Japanese citron, shake and get another order of Lucky Pierrot fries.
If you happen to find yourself in Hakodate, I really reccomend you give Lucky Pierrot or LaPi ラピ a try.

Lucky Pierrot@ Hakodate, Hokkaido, Japan

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