Monday, March 5, 2018

RAIK in Eifukucho

Bonito Soup Noodle RAIK


I’ve been meaning to make it to this shop for a while, but it’s on a street I generally avoid. More on that later.


The full name of RAIK is Bonito Soup Noodle RAIK, and everything on the menu is blended with bonito, or katsuo, broth. Katsu from Kagoshima Prefecture in the south of Japan. Most people think only Koichi Prefecture has good katsuo, but the Kagoshima's fish scene is legit, having access to many excellent fish as they migrate north and south along the southern coast of Japan.


Choose from a lighter soup (鰹×鶏) made with a chicken broth and thinner noodles, or a heavy soup (鰹×豚) made with a pork broth and thick noodles. I was on a mission to have another bowl nearby, so the lighter chicken bowl was the one to get.


RAIK is 無化調, completely chemical-free, meaning no added MSG or other questionable seasonings. The entire bowl is stellar, with the deep katsuo flavors outshining everything else. Tons of umami in this one.


Thin noodles for the chicken based soup, and thick noodles for the pork based.


Check their Instagram for updates. RAIK is constantly doing limited bowls. Most of these are fished based, and a recent salmon ramen looked amazing.


The reason I don't visit this street is that, four years or so ago I sat in the middle of the road, looking up at this tori gate. I had just been in a motorcycle crash, and my left leg was broken in two pieces.


I recovered (after a surgery and half a year recovery process), but just generally stayed away from this road. Well, this bowl got me over my phobias. Nothing a good bowl of ramen can't do.


Tokyo, Suginami-ku, Omiya 1-2-3
10 minute walk from Eifukucho Station

Open 11:30-15:00, 17:30-22:00
Closed Mondays