The badassness behind the ramen…

Day 193:

I don’t know why I waste stomach space on junk like this, but I after seeing the new Goma Ebi Filet-O on McD’s window I just had to have one.

Okay, so it wasn’t as good as it looked. But don’t you still wish they had it in the states?

Sorry, now let’s get to the badassness. I have a new mission. To eat at every ramen shop in the Tokyo Nostalgic Ramen book that Nate gave me last November. I’ve already eaten at a handful of the shops, but one that has been on my radar for months has been Kiraku (中華麺店 喜楽) in Shibuya. Having been around since 1952, it definitely has badassness written all over it.

The head chef is a scrawny, little old man that pounds his chest every 5 minutes as if he is preventing his heart from stopping. The scene here is classic. The staff, including this old man, act like they don’t give a f***. From throwing equipment around to giving each other death stares, this is a bad ass ramen shop.

The ramen (or appropriately called Chuuka Men) is a classic Tokyo-style shoyu topped with bean sprouts (moyashi), chashu, and half a hard-boiled egg. The fried onions in the soup give the bowl an inexplicable heavenly flavor. It’s a bit on the oily side, but everything just clicks.

The noodles are thick and chewy and they work really well with the extra oil.

The plump gyoza were great as well, but the definite highlight was the ramen.


After spending the rest of the night bar-hopping in Shibuya, Shimokitazawa, and Sasazuka, I took a nice long walk along the streets of Tokyo until I found Katsuraya on my way home.

Katsuraya serves Ie-kei Ramen, a type of ramen made popular in Yokohama. I’m normally not a huge fan of Ie-kei, but…

This was one of the best bowls of Ie-kei that I’ve ever had. Hands down awesome.

The noodles were almost perfect too.

And just look at that egg!

The staff here was a bit quirky as well. They were like paranoid robots with attitude. I also caught a glimpse of how their soup is made. They just continue to add raw bones and hot water into the huge pot that they scoop the soup out of. Interesting…

7 Replies to “The badassness behind the ramen…”

  1. down with hard-boiled eggs in ramen!! >:-(

    especially when they're yolks are grey on the outside and chalky on the inside!! yeah, i'm talking to you Santouka San Jose!

    sorry, had to get that off my chest! 😉

  2. Speaking of pratically pornographic…the way Yuri Ebihara bits into the sandwich in that commercial…

  3. What exactly is le-kei style? And holy sh*t, that last egg shot is practically pornographic. So delicious.

  4. The Ryu Shang Hai in Yamagata City in Tokamachi has the angriest looking staff I have ever seen. Speaking of Death Stares, these guys look like they're ready to kill yah if you so much as make a sound or some shit!!! Why are the really good ramen joints filled with angry chefs?

  5. I just saw a commercial for that Goma Ebi Filet-O and was wondering what it was like! I know its not the usual meal of ramen but it still looked worth trying (at least once).

  6. Good luck, some of those nostalgia places are way out in the sticks. Let me know if you want to borrow my bike!

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