Tuesday, January 5, 2016

麺や七彩 Shichisai: resurrection F

2015 was in many ways the Year of the Sardine. Shops came out with bold new ways of coaxing richness and depth from niboshiMy favorite of them, and possibly my favorite bowl of the year, was the reincarnated Shichisai. What was once a regular visit on the Tokyo Ramen Street, Shichisai remade its smooth Kitakata shoyu into a gutsy one loaded with niboshi, while also relocating into fancy new digs just a short walk away.

Kitakata ramen niboshi with egg (920yen)

This bowl might not be much to look at, but it belies a laborious process that goes into each and every  order. Like many new shops these days, Shichisai's noodles are made fresh in house, but unlike just about any other place, they are also made fresh to order.

The dough is kneaded, shaped, and cut for every single customer, right there in front of you. When they make it to the bowl, these are the softest and most flavorful noodles in the city.

They are the perfect foil for the rich, intense, slightly grainy flavor of the niboshi broth. Shichisai takes the sardine to levels of peak umami. Each bite just gets better and better until you're scraping the bottom of the bowl. The shop's attention to detail has maintained: the short, crisp menma to the perfectly seasoned half-boiled egg to the fatty and lean cuts of pork all provide the right notes.

They also have the occasional high-quality gentei, "limited-time" bowl. When Lum and I went, they were serving a cold ramen with broth made from exceptionally sweet Toukibi corn from Hokkaido and topped with juicy ham.

Maborosi no toukibi (1000yen)

Also fantastic, with different noodles crafted to soak the sweet corn sludge.

We were pretty sad when Shichisai left the Ramen Street, but, like a true Saiyan, they trained in the hyperbolic time chamber, learned a few new tricks, and came back stronger than ever.

Tokyo, Chuo-ku, Hacchobori 2-13-2
Closest stn: Hatchobori

Open from 1130am-330pm and 530-1030pm (closed every third Tuesday)


1 comment:

  1. I'm actually planning to hit this place up first! I'll take this post as a seal of approval that it's awesome!