Everyone seems to have their own favorite restaurant, cafe, or sweets shop. But if you are asking for bakery recommendations in Morioka, you are going to hear the same answer over and over again: Fukuda Pan Bakery (福田パン). What started as a simple bakery in 1948 has boomed in recent years to the point of being featured on various media programs and publications, as well as expanding operations to Osaka and Tokyo. You can enjoy this Morioka original bread at its Morioka flagship location just a 15 minute walk from Morioka Station.
Open every day of the week from 7am-5pm (or until the bread sells out!), Fukuda Pan Bakery is first easily recognized by the number of cars and people shuffling through the small storefront parking lot. Expect morning and lunch time rushes, though the locals say the store is never empty. So what are all these people coming to eat? Surprisingly, it is mostly for just one simple product: bread rolls.
Now the mention of bread rolls may not make your mouth instantly water, though these rolls are special for two reasons. First of all is they are fluffy with a light bread taste thanks to its industry trade secret yeast fermentation process. Second, and more importantly perhaps, is the near-endless variety of jam and cream fillings to load your bread roll with. 34 options to consider make the 10 minute wait in line pass in a heartbeat. Before you know it, you'll find yourself right in front of a scene more appropriate for an ice cream shop. There are containers littering the counter, all filled with a different color of deliciousness. Of course there are common flavors like peanut butter or blueberry. Alongside these are Japanese delights such as red bean paste (anko) or the regional flavor zunda (crushed edamame). Vegetable, croquette, or ham sandwiches are a good substitute for those without a sweet tooth.
There are a growing number of tourists found waiting in line with locals for their chance to taste this local modern gourmet food. The bread is not only delicious and high quality, but cheap, costing around 300 yen per roll. Most customers get their order to go, but there is a small dining area to sit as well. While the outside of the bakery looks like a schoolhouse, the charade is completed inside with the menu written on a blackboard. This is not your average bakery. Overall, a trip to Fukuda Pan Bakery is easy, fun, delicious, and a must for all foodies.