Well, this was random.
That's Namae-san, the chef over at L'Effervescence. If you've never heard of this restaurant, I'll give you a teaser. Number 12 in Asia. Two Michelin stars. Tabelog Gold status. In other words, fine dining.
I've been to L'Effervescence for lunch before, and it was a delight. But even their cheapest option is quite pricey, and out of the price range of anyone looking for a casual slurp.
So when Namae-san did a quick pop-up at a fermentation festival in Tokyo, I was first in line.
Katsuo, blocks of skipjack tuna smocked dry into flavorful umami rocks. Shave them down; a little goes a long way. Different levels were used for different purposes, and some of the best were shaved fresh onto the top of the ramen.
The soup is hit with homemade sour cream, another level of fermentation umami.
All in all, an interesting one-off bowl. I'd probably never go for this again, but I was happy to try ramen from such an accomplished chef.
Official festival site here.
L'Effervescence site here.
This was at the farmer's market at UNU in Omotesando, which is open weekends from 10am-4pm.