We had initially wanted to check out イーヨ横丁 Iiyo Yokocho, but somehow ended up 黒塀横丁 Kurobei Yokocho (black-fence alley). However, it looked like a tourist trap with very few customers, and none of the restaurants were appealing to us. We were almost going to settle for one of the nearby restaurant, when hubby recalled that Mr J had mentioned a very famous つけ麺 tsukemen place at Tokyo Ramen Street in Tokyo Station.
Without further ado, we located Tokyo Ramen Street within the massive Tokyo Station, and before I could look for the name of the shop, we spotted the queue 😮 It’s amazing that there were 8 ramen shops here but only one has a snaking queue!
We joined the queue promptly and was handed a menu to look at. Given our experience with a huge bowl of ramen on our first night in Tokyo, we figured that we should only order 2 bowls to share among the 3 of us. But we were not sure if this was allowed because we read that some restaurants require everyone to order at least one item. When it was our turn to order from the vending machine, luckily the waitress was Chinese and we could ask her in Mandarin. She explained that there was no such restriction in this restaurant. In fact she suggested that we up-sized one bowl to share among the 3 of us!
Hubby decided that he should have one bowl to himself and as it was easier to get 2 sets of seats of 1+2 than to get a set of 3 seats, we decided to split and hubby got to sit at the counter watching the chef prepare the noodles! The girls ordered a 味玉つけめん あつもり Warm Tsukemen with Flavoured Egg (¥930) and hubby had the 特製つけめん あつもり Tokusei Tsukemen (¥1050) which has minced pork in it as well.
The way to eat tsukemen is to dip the dry noodle into the very thick broth and slurp it up, much like how one would eat soba. The very thick tonkotsu-based broth was too salty for the girls but hubby seemed to enjoyed it. We loved the thick slice of char siu or roast pork and the onsen egg. The noodle was thicker than usual ramen but was so smooth and chewy and provided very good texture into each bite. When we were done with the noodles, we asked for some soup to be added to the rest of the broth to finish up the ingredients as a soup. Hubby loved the soup which sort of washed away (some of) the saltiness of the broth.
A truly enjoyable dinner in a cold night!