Thursday, September 18, 2014

スージーハウス (Sooji House in Yotsuya)

スージーハウス

DSCF6158.jpg

Soo Shee Ha Oo Soo

DSCF6157.jpg

I cam here to film with one of my regular TV gigs; eating ramen with the junior idol group X21. The topic of this week's show was newly opened tsukemen shops. The gimmick of Sooji House was that the master used to be a professional hair dresser. He even won some sort of hair/make competition.

DSCF6160.jpg

Well, we had the tsukemen topped with lemon. I thought we would be filming some b-roll footage of the bowl after shooting with the talent, but that didn't happen. So I don't really have a photo of this bowl. Sorry.

It was standard.

DSCF6159.jpg



東京都新宿区 四谷1-2-6
Tokyo, Shinjuku-ku, Yotsuya 1-2-6
Closest station: Yotsuya

Open 11:30-23:00
Sundays 11:30-15:00

Monday, September 15, 2014

井田商店 (Ida Shoten in Nakanobu)

井田商店

DSCF6116.jpg

Ida Shoten is a gem out near Nakanobu. Though it isn't far from central Tokyo, this part of town feels like you've taken a time machine back 30 years, and then hopped a local train out into an unnamed residential part of the country.

DSCF6112.jpg

Inspired by the master's home prefecture of Hiroshima, Ida Shoten does an Onomichi style that gets better after the initial bite. I was a bit underwhelmed by the impact, but once the chunks of seabura - pork back fat - melted a bit, nothing was stopping me.

DSCF6115.jpg

A solid bowl, though the ramen otaku out there will point to other shops in the area as being superb.

DSCF6120.jpg

Give it a try, though. You won't be disappointed.

DSCF6113.jpg

Ask them for a sticker if you make it out!

DSCF6111.jpg



東京都品川区中延2-16-8
Tokyo, Shinagawa-ku, Nakanobu 2-16-8
Closest station: Ebaranakanobu

Open 11:30-14:30, 18:00-23:00
Weekends 11:30-19:00
Closed Mondays

Thursday, September 11, 2014

冷し中華 - Hiyashi Roundup 2014

冷し中華

Summer is the time when successful ramen shops get creative with a dish of cold noodles called hiyashi chuka. Often soupless, these creations can have anything in them, so long as they use cold ramen noodles. It is a great way to beat the heat.

Here are some 2014 bowls.

DSCF6126.jpg

Kagari in Ginza served a tare jelly with smoked duck, scallops, scrambled egg, and a side of tomato.

DSCF6133.jpg

Kikanbo in Kanda used a special aromatic sansho pepper from Okayama Prefecture to season the roast chicken, eggplant, and cherry tomatoes.

DSCF6197.jpg

Senrigan was off the hook. The mound of moyashi bean sprouts was replaced with a daikon salad. Then drizzled with a sesame dressing. Then, as expected from Senrigan, drizzled with half a cup of pork back fat. Amazing.

Monday, September 8, 2014

ら・けいこ (Rakeiko in Nagoya)

ら・けいこ

DSCF6077.jpg

Walking back to the hotel, literally on the same block as the last spot I slurped, was an unassuming hole in the wall that caught my eye. The menu, located on the street, had just two choices; with or without soup. Rakeiko calls themselves a スープ無専門店, a soupless noodle specialty shop, so it was a no-brainer.

DSCF6079.jpg

Simple; just fat, carbs, and salt.

DSCF6081.jpg

The only thing it was missing was a nice, runny egg on top. By the way, the above shot is half-sized noodles, a request I made. Being a Jiro-inspired shop, you can expect a voluminous mass as standard.

Also, ninniku irimasu ka?

DSCF6082.jpg

I left very happy, and very satisfied.

DSCF6084.jpg



愛知県名古屋市中区栄4-12-6
Aichi-ken, Nagoya-shim Chuo-ku, Sakae 4-12-6
Closest station: Sakae

Open 11:00-15:00, 18:00-21:00
Closed Sundays

Thursday, September 4, 2014

麺屋壱の介 (Ichinosuke in Nagoya)

麺屋壱の介

DSCF6072.jpg

Ichinosuke was a recommendation from my Facebook fan page. But the minute I walked in, ordered, and pulled out my camera, the single staff member behind the counter yelled at me. No photos!

His bluntness came off as rude, and when he turned around for a moment I tried to take a ninja shot of my bowl. Alas, this is a new camera and I am still learning the quirks.

DSCF6074.jpg

So maybe this shop is good, but being yelled at for doing something I love, at a place with no customers, put a bad taste in my mouth. For reference, they serve a thick toripaitan soup.

I won't be going back.

DSCF6068.jpg



愛知県名古屋市中区栄4-12-21
Aichi-ken, Nagoya-shi, Chuo-ku, Sakae 4-12-21
Closest station: Sakae

Open 11:30-15:00, 18:00-2:00am
Saturday 11:30-2:00am
Sunday 11:30-12:00am

Monday, September 1, 2014

華丸 (Hanamaru in Hagiwara, Aichi)

華丸

DSCF6020.jpg

The company put us up in Ichinomiya, about 15 minutes from Nagoya. Not a lot going on in this part of Japan (though I did find a retro gaming bar called Genesis; with almost every console ever made). A local search for ramen showed Hanamaru as the obvious (and only) choice.

DSCF6008.jpg

Just a few stops down the line.

DSCF6011.jpg

Just a few blocks from the station.

DSCF6025.jpg

DSCF6019.jpg

Solid. This bowl of rich tonkotsu soup was slightly reminiscent of my favorite bowl in the country (of this style), Orenoramenappare. I say slightly reminiscent, so don't go running across the country just yet.

DSCF6017.jpg

But if you find yourself in the northern parts of Aichi Prefecture, definitely check this one out.

DSCF6016.jpg

The pork was excellent, so if you have an appetite, go for extra toppings.

DSCF6015.jpg

愛知県一宮市萩原町串作1407-2
Aichi-ken, Ichinomiya-shi, Hagiwaracho, Kushisaku 1407-2
Closest station: Hagiwara

Open 11:30-14:00, 17:30-21:00
Closed Wednesdays and some Tuesdays

Thursday, August 28, 2014

MENSHO in Kasuga

自家製麺 MENSHO TOKYO

IMG_0810.jpg

The latest offering from 庄の is simply named MENSHOTOKYO. This comes as the fifth shop in a list that inclides:

All excellent.

IMG_0802.jpg

A new logo and a new brand means that MENSHO is ready for the world.

IMG_0808.jpg

The latest shop features lamb ramen. Pork bones and lamb bones make the soup, and the lamb chashu rounds out the unique character of this one.

IMG_0809.jpg

Lamb is a funky little meat, but works when balanced with the other ingredients.

IMG_0812.jpg

Of course, as with all Mensho things, noodles are made in house.

IMG_0805.jpg

And researched in the laboratory.

A laboratory? The shop has a ramen clean-room in the back that will serve as a base for Shono-san and his crew to create new and amazing things.

IMG_0806.jpg

Expect big things from Mensho in the future.

Official Site Here

IMG_0801.jpg




東京都文京区春日1-15-9
Tokyo, Bunkyo-ku, Kasuga 1-15-9
Closest station: Kasuga

Open 11:00-
(They are new, so check the official site for updated information)