Monday, May 4, 2020

猪一 離れ (Inoichi Hanare in Kyoto)

麺屋 猪一 離れ

I secretly wanted to hate this one. Inoichi Hanare is one of those shops with more foreign tourists in line than local Japanese. Not to put the palate of the Japanese above that of anyone else, but I'm usually more satisfied with the spot that isn't in the guidebooks unless it is my own. Yes, this place is in the Michelin guide, not that it matters.

But Inoichi is good. It's the kind of beautiful, refined bowl that food writers default to in their guidebooks. The broth, made from dried katsuo, is accentuated by a handful of freshly shaven flakes. The high-quality, meaty menma bamboo shoot. The perfect egg.

They also offer, in tourist-friendly fashion, some kind of wagyu ramen.

Of course, as I waited in the inevitable line, a foreigner showed up, cut in front of a local, and said in English, "It's okay, I was already here." So yeah, the situation in Kyoto is (was) still (circa summer 2019) full of tourists behaving badly.

I heard rumors of Inoichi Hanare opening a shop in Tokyo and possibly overseas.

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