Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Kitanozaka Oku (Kobe, Chūō-ku)

北野坂 奥
きたのざか おく

Motsu tsukemen (with ajitama): 16 / 20

The stairs going down to the basement corridor leading to this restaurant may not be very welcoming, but you should really overcome this first impression. You will soon enter into a very spacious and pleasant, high-ceiling, kind of New York-loft-style restaurant serving ramen and tsukemen, that you can order with offal (motsu / もつ). I had the motsu tsukemen with an egg (aji-tama), and my friend the motsu ramen.

Broth: A good (if a bit thin) tonkotsu gyokai broth.

Noodles: Home-made noodles with a delicate taste, lacking a bit of a chew though.

Meat: The motsu bites are really the highlight of this restaurant. Grilled and mouth-melting, they are simply excellent! (at least, if you’re as much into motsu as I am)

Egg: The egg was very well cooked, though not totally homogeneously - but overall, the yellow was gooey in a yummy way. The white part had a strong shoyu taste.

Topping: Thick menma with a classical menma taste. Some white negi.

You can help yourself with red chili, sanchou and black pepper - I think that the latter fits the best with the motsu bites. This is one of my best ramen-experience in Kobe, I definitely recommend it (but look at my review of Sugari in Kyoto for an even better Kansai motsu experience).

I also tasted my friend’s ramen. The fishy taste was quite strong for a ramen, and the noodles a bit softer. It was quite creamy. I also recommend it, although the tsukemen may have my preference.

UPDATE (August, 17th): I came back and tried their spicy ramen.

Karai ramen (I don't remember the exact name): 12 / 20

The broth was here much less pleasant, with nothing much more than spicyness and a somewhat undefinable taste. The noodles were definitely too soft. Chashu was thick and very tender, a nice surprise. The egg was definitely overcooked that time. The thick, salty menmas were pleasant. I strongly recommend sticking with their tsukemen (with motsu, if you like it).

More information on ramendb.
Other review: Go ramen

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