I had some work in Takamatsu, one of Shikoku's major cities. This part of Japan is very, very famous for udon. Most people couldn't tell you much beyond that, but as I've been here a few times, I knew that people were lining up in droves for something else . . .
Chicken! 骨付鶏 to be exact. Well, I waited in line for this, the most famous chicken in town, as part of my quest to not only eat ramen all over Japan, but to eat local favorites as well. This overly-oily piece of salty meat was a huge disappointment. How do you even eat it? No knives were given, and the meat was quite tough. I ended up splattering spiced oil in my eye as I tried to rip it apart with my teeth.
Immediately as I stepped outside, I knew I needed something to get the taste out of my mouth. I needed ramen.
Going by the name alone, I ventured over to Sanuki Rock. Sanuki is the old name for the part of Japan. Again, most people know Sanuki udon. But Sanuki ramen? Rock and roll Sanuki ramen?
Wow! I throw the word kodawari around a lot, as a term to describe the special attention to detail that goes into really excellent food. This one is very kodawari. Wonderful noodles and pork, but the highlight was that soup. Made with soy sauce from nearby Shodoshima Island, it's a deep, dark celebration of local flavors.
The perfect bowl after a night of drinking or eating oily chicken!
I asked the master what the deal with the name was. Easy to remember was the plan. People have no problem saying, "Let's go to rock!"
Kagawa-ken, Takamatsu-shi, Tokiwacho 2-1-1
Closest station: Takamatsu
Open 11:30-14:00, 18:00-1:00am
Closed on most Sundays