Thursday, April 2, 2015

鬼金棒 (Kikanbo in Ikebukuro)

カラシビ味噌らー麺 鬼金棒

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One potential issue with Ramen Adventures is that I don't re-post about shops I have already been to. So while a shop like Kikanbo is probably in my Top 5 list, the Kikanbo pages are a bit dated. You can see them here and here. I revisit these shops constantly, but in the interests of keeping things fresh, don't post.

But when they open a new shop across town, now that's another story!

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Ikebukuro has the image of a rough part of town. This is, of course, rough by Japanese standards. The shopping is a bit more gaudy, most people walking around are from Saitama, the much less cool prefecture to the north, and the *ahem* red light district is known for being one of the most affordable on the Yamanote Line. Welcome to Ikebukuro.

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Kikanbo's third shop keeps to their roots, but tweaks things just a bit. All the spices are there. As usual, choose your levels. Go for futsu - regular - to be safe, and mashi - more - to be bold. Of course, onimashi, the devil-size addition of spice, is only for those who know what they are in for. Me? I go with futsu-mashi. A regular helping of hot spice and a large helping of numbing sansho pepper.

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The Ikebukuro version differs slightly in the soup. 100% pork for this one. A bit more intense, and a bit more creamy. So how does it compare?

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I have to say, I dug this one even more than the original! It has a bit more in-your-face impact, and a nice fatty aftertaste. Sorry East Side, the western bits of Tokyo just lapped you, again.

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Love the atmosphere, as always.

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No days off, and a solid 11am to 10pm schedule makes this one a must-hit shop.

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Official Site Here

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Map of 東京都豊島区東池袋1-13-14

東京都豊島区東池袋1-13-14
Tokyo, Toshima-ku, Higashi-Ikebukuro 1-13-14
Closest station: Ikebukuro

Open 11:00-22:00