Tuesday, January 31, 2017

百年本舗 Hyakunen Honpo: one hundred years of happiness

Super belated Happy New Year for readers of Ramen Love! Sorry for the lack of updates these past couple of months. A move and many other things kept us busy. But we never stopped eating ramen, so please stay tuned.

Where do you take guests who are visiting from abroad in Tokyo? There are so many places to go, but Akihabara is one of the best options, as its the mecca of electricity, games, and anime. There are a lot of good ramen options, but Yanagi-san's (Menya Sou) newest shop deserves its own special trip.

Niku-jiru chuka soba (780yen)

Niku-jiru chuka soba shio (780yen)

This is an old school chuka soba, imbued with niku jiru, or "meat juice," which in this case means very high quality pork. The shop uses pork chuck in place of the typical pork belly, and the chefs serve it thinly-sliced and with a bit of pink.

Just thinking of this mound of meat makes my mouth water. The shio was also solid, but I gotta rave about the shoyu. The soup is darker and sweeter than your typical shoyu ramen, going really well with the silky noodles and thinly-sliced, fluffy pork. You can customize your bowl with tableside garlic and ginger, which works great to provide some sharpness and depth to the initial sweetness. I love bowls like this where you can enjoy changing the taste until the very last slurp.

While the highlight is the ramen, the Honpo also serves great sides - bowls of rice with that heavenly pork, a Singaporean-style Hainan chicken rice...

...and even some desserts! This ice cream dish was paired with flat noodle-like mochi.

If you're an indecisive person, Yanagi-san provides you with whatever options to suit your mood. His newest shop translates to "A Hundred-Years Headquarters," and here's hoping that it's around serving happy people in a hundred years, even if Hearts and I are long dead by then.

Tokyo, Chiyoda-ku, Sotokanda 3-8-9
Closest stn: Akihabara

Open from 11am-10pm