One of Tokyo's top ramen chefs (I just can't remember which one it was!) told me to check out 30-year-old Kaotan. The shop is only minutes away from Roppongi, right next to the expansive Aoyama Graveyard, considered to be the most valuable graveyard in the world. That's some pricey land!
Despite being adjacent to one of Tokyo's hottest neighborhoods, this shop isn't much more than a rickety shack. Plywood holds together the walls. Incandescent lights are strung together in what looks like a weekend of D.I.Y. work. The awning outside is permanently skewed to the side.
To sum it all up, this place is amazing.
And the ramen. This is as classic as it gets. A soy base, with a healthy sprinkling of aromatic fried onions. Toppings are simple, with the bright green peas acting as the shop's signature.
Open until the wee hours of the morning, this isn't a bad place to end your night of binge-drinking in the nearby cesspool of Roppongi.
Tokyo, Minato-ku, Minamiaoyama 2-34-30
Closest station: Roppongi
Friday and Saturday until 6:00am