Authentic French cuisine by the father of French cuisine in Hokkaido, accompanied by the warmth of Japanese hospitality in a calming, cozy space. At once rustic and refined, and emphasizing ingredients from the vast and fertile land of Hokkaido, Molière draws out the best from each element resulting in subtle yet magnificent flavors.
Across from Maruyama Park in the middle of the city of Sapporo, Molière can be found in a quiet residential neighborhood. Thick double doors for warmth open into a chic dining room with milk chocolate and ivory tones. Lit by large glass windows and adorned with seasonal motifs, there is a strong sense of the season outside within. A large central table is a hub for the service team, who attend to each table’s needs for drinks and other items from here. This layout and the generous space between each table affords a sense of privacy within this cozy space. Gazing out onto Maruyama Park, where tall trees waver in the breeze, you can enjoy a retreat from the busy pace of the city.
French cuisine highlighting Hokkaido produce
French cuisine highlighting Hokkaido produce, dining at Molière gives you a sense of the challenges presented by Hokkaido’s harsh natural environment, as well as the wealth and warmth of Hokkaido people and culture. Each dish overflows with gentle flavors, focusing on Hokkaido’s rich harvest and showcasing the seasons. Chef Nakamichi’s rustic yet refined approach allows him to highlight the deep flavors of a carrot, for example, while at the same time applying his highly technical culinary skills to limit any undesired elements, thereby elevating an ingredient. He considers that to be a chef’s mission.
The limited number of ingredients on the plate enables the guests to get a taste for each item’s innate flavor. The course flows pleasantly and is never heavy, thanks to the strong emphasis on vegetables, and yet every dish is generous, heart-warming and certainly tummy-filling. Vegetables are not selected as a supporting item; instead they are the starting point and the central focus, to which proteins are paired. Hokkaido venison, lamb, beef and all kinds of seafood combine for beautiful cuisine that takes you on a journey through the incredible flavors of Hokkaido.
Deeply rooted in traditional French cuisine, the signature dish is skate in brown butter sauce. Essentially a simple dish, years of experience show that constant basting of the skate with the melted butter at 110 degrees ensures delicious buttery flavors and the maximum levels of umami from the skate. Even within the realms of such fundamental techniques, Chef Nakamichi is constantly aware that the process of cooking is all about daily trial and error to perfect those flavors.
Nakamichi was propelled into French cuisine after witnessing the passion of the farmers of Makkari, a village blessed with bountiful spring water located between the popular ski resorts of Niseko and Rusutsu. So impressed by their dedicated approach, he promised to pay the utmost respect to their ingredients through his cuisine. Spending hours crossing the vast tracts of land that constitute Hokkaido, Nakamichi makes sure to visit around harvest time to constantly remind himself of and show his gratitude for their arduous labor. It is almost a case of rivalry that Nakamichi cannot let himself lose out to their passion and toil. Nakamichi makes full use of Hokkaido’s wealth of delicious proteins too – lamb, beef from the eastern area of Tokachi, and incredible catches of seafood from ports all around the island.