Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Momonoki (Tōkyō-to, Shinjuku-ku)

小麦と肉 桃の木
こむぎとにく もものき
Komugi to Niku Momo no Ki

Shio tsukemen: 14 / 20

The north of Shinjuku Gyoen was a strategically location for my shio-tsukemen run, with two shops in the area famous for their shio tsukemen - Momonoki and Tuka. I entered into the former shortly after it opened. Momonoki is an interesting ramen restaurant held by two women – something I’ve never seen so far in Japan! The ‘bulgari ramen’ with yoghurt (of which they have only fifteen dishes every day) was tempting, but I had a mission here, a shio-tsukemen mission.

Broth: A slightly fat broth, flavored with yuzu. It did not provide such a strong taste to the noodles, alas.

Noodles: A large 300g portion of curly-tagliatelle-like noodles, the kind of noodles that definitely seems to be associated with shio tsukemen, as it looks from my recent experience at Zyurumen Ikeda and Hirugao (but this shop was formerly a branch of Hirugao, if I believe Ramen Tokyo, so this makes sense). Not very firm but OK. You can order them as atsumori (hot). Unfortunately you cannot chose how much noodles you want, and the default portion comes with 300g, which was way too much for me (I had some more shio tsukemen to sample during the day, remember?).

Meat: Quite unusually, it featured many, many thin slices of fatty pork: some were standard, some excellent and savory, and some just too fat for my taste. But overall, this was way overabundant and I had to leave some of it untouched - half the quantity would have been largely enough.

Toppings: Some interesting and rare aburaage (fried tofu) topping here - never seen that on a ramen before. Some long white negi too.

Soup wari: You can order ‘soba yu’ (the water in which they cook the noodles, I guess) instead of the classical soup wari, a relatively thick and cloudy juice that brings a really interesting new twist.

This bowl was a bit unequal, but definitely an original experience though, for many reasons - I mean, shio tsukemen is already a rather uncommon dish, so when it is made by women (in a usually overwhelmingly men's world), topped with fatty pork slices and aburaage, and with a yu-soba soup wari, it becomes truly unique.

More info on ramendb.

Other review: Ramen Adventures, Go Ramen!, Ramen Tokyo

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