Monday, January 27, 2014

くじら食堂 Kujira Shokudo: whale rider

Located in a quiet residential area, I never really had a chance to try Kujira Shokudo until I got off at the station today. The main reason I wanted to try this shop is that the ramen chef was a disciple of Shichisai, one of the best shops in all of Tokyo. Both places specialize in Kitakata ramen (for a quick rundown of Kitakata style, see here). I also work around here, so it's high time I explored more of this area's ramen.

While waiting for their bowl, good ramen lovers should always pay attention to their surroundings. The chef kneaded the noodles softly before slipping them into the boiling water, almost as if he was imparting his feeling into the noodles themselves. The shop is also tastefully decorated with images of whales (kujira in Japanese means "whale," though no whales were harmed in the making of this bowl).

Time to chow down!

Shoju w/ ajitama (770yen)

The first sip is very mild and tender, though a little too bland for my taste. The chashu is also very good, roasted on a grill so that the smell and juices of the meat are enhanced. But the noodles?

Outstanding. Each bite into the elastic surface of the noodles was like sharing tasty kisses with someone special.

On behalf of a Shichisai fan, I hope this shop becomes famous in this sleepy part of Tokyo.

Tokyo, Koganei City, Jainocho 5-1-19
Closest stn: Higashi Koganei

Open from 5pm-130am (closed Sundays)


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