Monday, 21 January 2013

Sapporo Cafes: Hammock Base Cafe

Hammocks. Do you like hammocks? Talking about this place with my sister I discovered that she has an irrational hatred of hammocks in cafes. I think it comes from living for too long in areas with a high concentration of cafes that are trying just a little too hard, and, for her, the hammocks have become tainted by their association with annoying people. If, however, you harbour no ill will towards swinging seating then Hammock Base Cafe near Sapporo TV Tower is worth checking out.

In one of those like-attracts-like occurrences, Hammock Base Cafe opened just over a year ago in the basement of the same building that houses the ultra-stylish Fabulous Cafe. Hammock Base Cafe's concept is hammocks, but it's a very cool looking cafe all round with a small menu of handmade dishes and a well stocked bar to boot.

Here's where the good shit is:

Hammocks, son. I think we were actually expecting more traditional... reclining hammocks? Slung-between-two-trees hammocks? These are more like chair things, but if you get yourself properly positioned you can stretch right out and swing around a bit. Just try not to knock over your coffee.

There aren't all that many hammocks so I think that pretty often you'll have to wait before getting to sit in one of those low-slung things. We waited sitting at the bar, which is also impeccably cool. Here it is, through the strings of a hammock.

When the hammocks are free you can go climb in, but if there are people waiting you can only dangle for an hour and a half. We got a slice of meat and potato quiche as a snack. It was good, but small. The guy kept telling us it was small, but when it came it was actually smaller than we expected. It was warm, which I think is possibly a mistake about quiche that is commonly made in Japan, but one for which I am grateful since I don't really like cold quiche.

The drinks come in these cool two-tone light plastic mugs. Almost camping style, which I guess goes with the hammocks and the fake grass underneath them.

The coffee was fine. Nothing to write home about, which I kind of guessed because they only had the one coffee drink on their menu.

Hammock Base has all the other trappings of a creative cafe too: handmade crafts for sale, a weirdly eclectic bookshelf to browse, flyers and posters for all sorts of stuff. It's a good place and I'll head back, even if I'm a little worried about trying to eat while sitting in a hammock. Oh, and motion sickness is a possibility.

As I said, Hammock Base Cafe is under Fabulous Cafe, along with another few cool looking places. The closest station is Bus Centre Mae, and we got there, avoiding the snow, by walking along the long underground passage from Odori Station. I'll mark it on my map, and if you don't hate hammocks it's worth checking out.