Ginza continues to surprise. First, there was Kagari, which has been completely discovered; if you don't mind a long line of mostly foreigners, it still serves an amazing bowl. Then there was Mugitooribu, whose inclusion on many best-of lists is well deserved.
The latest spot to hit is Kazami.
Kazami is located down a small alley, like many awesome hidden restaurants in Ginza, inside a sleek modern building with a sushi restaurant on the second floor.
The one to order is the 酒粕濃厚そば, sake kasu noko soba. Made with sake lees, a byproduct of nihonshu production. As yeast eats sugar and creates alcohol, an organic sediment builds up. Not something you would want in your drink (although a little can add interest flavors), it is generally discarded.
But it can be used. Here, it adds a deep flavor to the ramen. Similar in some ways to miso, but not as salty or pungent. A bit bitter, but not overly so. Something anyone should try if they have a chance.
As the flavor can be seen as funky to some, there are plenty of condiment options to tweak your soup. Vinegar, sansho pepper, dried red pepper, yuzusco sauce, ground pepper, yuzukosho, and fresh ginger. Don't overdo it.
This is one of my favorite new bowls of 2016. The ingredients are all top quality. A must-slurp in my opinion.
The side of seasonal vegetables was a nice touch.
Ohata-san knocked this anticipated shop out. Well done.
Tokyo, Chuo-ku, Ginza 6-4-13
Closest station: Ginza
Open 11:30-15:30, 17:30-22:30