Monday, May 10, 2010

Tsujita Ramen, Kanda (二代目つじた、淡路町)

You'll be thinking from the title that I'm stooping to double-posting about ramen shops. But you'll be WRONG about that! Hoo-ahh! Gotcha! Woo!

That's because the Tsujita I went to a few weeks ago is across the street, and has a different name involving miso (plus th menu to match).  When I went there, I was seduced into getting the tsukemen, which I regretted, but I loved the soup, toppings and general atmosphere. This time I went to what I think is the original shop (Yasukuni Dori, just west of Awajicho, north side of the street - right next to the first of the big guitar stores), and I got the ramen, and I confirmed that this place rules and you should check it out.

The noodles come, as they did in my last post, from Mikawaya Seimen, but were a different noodle - a little more curly, and definitely more yellow. Cooked perfectly, that is, just on the hard side when served, and softening throughout the eating process, like my waistline. I was very happy to get regular sliced chashu instead of the chopped bits that they put in the tsukemen soup, the egg was boiled close to perfection, and even the menma seemed good today. The soup is exemplary - very fishy (to me, like katsuobushi) but blended with a lot of pork. It's almost clear, but a bit gelatinous, and not at all heavy (clean plate again...). Makes me wonder if the one I had previously was really miso-based or not; I'd best go again to check it out! (No, I kid, I looked at the web and the menu shows the miso items as being available only at that branch.)

This shop has the same atmosphere as the miso version (not that surprising since it's about 50 yards away) - a bunch of young guys intent on delivering the best ramen they can, asap (since 2003). Not a lot of talking, not a lot of yelling, and everyone using the 'intense and polite' sort of voices that people sometimes adopt in Japan to show that they're, well, intent on their work.

And fortunately their work is feeding you.

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