|Tokyo Asakusa Sensoji Temple | Authentic Ramen (Japanese Noodle) and Gyoza|
|Wednesday, 14 April 2010 18:00|
Since our first day was spent at the vibrant Asakusa neighborhood, or precisely close to the precinct of Sensoji Temple, we opted for a lunch break nearby.
Without much clue and obviously illiterate (Japanese illiterate!), our instinct brought us to an alley that lies perpendicular to the colorful Nakamise Shopping Street. One of the fabulous things I love about Tokyo is the plastic food display. For this restaurant we had eyed on, it clearly showed their specialty is 'Ramen'. And this Japanese noodles look delicious. The long queue outside this restaurant came next in my mind and served as our second clue that we should be heading into a good restaurant. Price ranges between 700 to 1000 yen.
The facade is perhaps measuring between 4 to 5 m width with a tiny sliding door and there is no space to even queue inside. However, a friendly waitstaff would come out and hand to the diners their menu (while waiting) so that we place an order in advance. When it was our turn to decide, we asked for an English menu (their menu is also prepared in a few other languages e.g. Chinese, brilliant!) and just pointed to what we would love to eat. Easy and fool-proof.
Land or space is considered a luxurious in Tokyo so do not expect a roomy restaurant. We were ushered to a bar counter ahead. Behind us was a long mirror which is also the wall and the limit of one end of this restaurant. Right in front of us, a rectangular area with a width less than 2 m is the space where 4 chefs stood to prepare the delectable ramen. Besides this bar counter, they also have upstairs to cater for a large group of diners.
Our two bowls of ramen were served pretty fast. After taking a few photographs, I grabbed my spoon and tried the soup. It was fantastic! Without hesitant, I continued with the soft and tasty savory noodles. 'This is what an authentic ramen supposed to be!' I mumbled to myself. Of Chinese origin, somehow Ramen or pronouced as 'Pulled Noodle' in Chinese is a popular Japanese noodle dish and available in several variations based on broth's ingredient or geographical region. Our ramen was served in clear broth, adorned with a few sliced pork, seaweed (nori), fish cakes (kamaboko) and bamboo shoots (menma).
We also tried a plate of gyoza or the Japanese version of 'Jiaozi'. Gyoza is a typical side dish served with ramen. The filling is prepared from a minced pork, garlic and vegetables, then wrapped with a thinly-rolled dough skins then pan-fried to perfection.
All of all, our first ramen experience in the heart of Asakusa, Tokyo was awesome. We paid 1900 yen for everything. We didn't order additional drinks but ice water was served on the house.
A perpendicular alley between Kaminarimon and Hozomon.
If one is facing Hozomon, the alley is on the right, only a few yards from Nakamise Street.
Getting to Kaminarimon or Thunder Gate of Sensoji Temple:
Get off at Asakusa subway station (Ginza Line or Tobu Line), 100 m walk towards west along Kaminarimon Street.
|Last Updated on Wednesday, 14 April 2010 20:17|
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