Monday, July 4, 2016

ハルピン (Harupin in Suwa, Nagano)

ハルピン 下諏訪店

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A last minute solo motorcycle trip meant some last minute ramen adventures.

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I had the urge to spend a few days climbing famous mountains. Nagano is home of a few of the 百名山, the 100 famous mountains of Japan. My ramen obsession shouldn't paint me as someone who accomplishes many tasks; I've only been to the summit of seven so far.

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From the top of Mt. Tateshina I sent a message to my buddy Yoshi. He lives in Suwa, which just happens to be on the way home. He told me to meet him at Harupin. GPS coordinates had me less than an hour away, plus the 45 minutes it would take to descend the mountain. Well, the posted trail time was an hour and a half, but my abnormally long legs mean that I hike in Japan at double speed.

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Harupin has a few shops in the area, but only this one in Shima-Suwa has taretsuke on the menu. Tsukemen served with an uncommon clear soup, and a spicy, smoky miso tare on the noodles.

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Nagano is known for their miso, among other things. The tare has a lot of kick, and the more you dip, me more the soup gets flavored.

Yoshi recommends getting a normal serving of the noodles, and then ordering kaedama with a different type. Thick to start, and thin to end.

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Wish I could have stayed longer, but rain was on the horizon, and I am a fair-weather rider.

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Though with the real rainy season coming soon, I should probably just deal with the light June showers.

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長野県諏訪郡下諏訪町西鷹野町4750-1
Nagano-ken, Suwabu, Shimosuwamachi, Nishitakanomachi 4750-1
Closest station: Shimo-Suwa

Open 11:00-15:00, 17:00-22:00