I had the opportunity to work at the 2012 Tsukemen Festival in Daimon this year.
A big THANK YOU to everyone who came out to visit me. Even if everyone only ended up being two people! Weather took my working time from about 20 hours down to only a few.
I announced that I would be working for a Kitakata shop, はせ川, over on the Ramen Adventure Facebook page. Typhoon #17 came and knocked that down to just a couple hours on Sunday afternoon.
I was in charge of the back fat, tare, and toppings.
While the pros were in charge of the noodles and soup.
Our final result was excellent.
Super chewey noodles, specially made for the event. And chashu that melted in the heat of the soup.
I tried a few other shops, but honestly wasn't really into the event this year. When I worked there a few years back for IVAN Ramen, all the shops had been hand-picked among the list of the organizer's friends. This meant backstage revelry, and a fun time for the workers. This year, though, the shops came from all over the country. And popular shops from Kitakata have no relation to popular shops from Kyushu.
Matador's beef paitan was a little bland.
Ganja is always good.
An overload of niboshi this time.
The Sapporo-based Enjin was super creamy, though this serving was finished in about half a minute. The wait was over an hour. More like an hour and a half.
Is it worth it? Waiting hours and hours for a rather minuscule serving of noodles? Probably not. But if the weather is good, go with a couple friends and give it a try.
Of course, the Topping Girls were there to perform. You don't know about the Topping Girls? Actually, I can vouch for them, they were backstage before the event getting their slurp on.
Good luck to the newcomers . . . The Soup Girls!
And good luck to はせ川! See you in Kitakata.
Winners announced on the main site. Of course a super popular Tokyo shop won.