TSUTA: Michelin-starred Ramen

In the exclamatory words of Benjamin Franklin: “Nothing ventured, nothing gained!” Tsuta Ramen proved to be an experience worth having.

In the exclamatory words of Benjamin Franklin: “Nothing ventured, nothing gained!” Tsuta Ramen proved to be an experience worth having.

ASIDE FROM RICE, noodles is also an important staple food in Asian culture. Add to that staple food which cost less than 2,000 yen with truffle oil, made in-house soba, limited seat, long queue and you will have Michelin-star ramen joint Tsuta. But here is the thing, you need to wake up really early to get a seat in the restaurant; but trust me, it is all worth it.

Tsuta Ramen is a tiny ramen shop located in Sugamo’s calm neighborhood. The Sugamo train station is easy to reach and once there, you just need to walk few steps from Tsuta. Tsuta received its star on December 2015, but even before receiving Michelin’s star, Tsu-ta had already become synonymouse with long queue. As soon as the Michelin’s star received, Tsuta become a must-visit for foodies in Japan and from abroad.

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Tickets are available starting 7 am on weekdays, 6.30 am on weekends, and Tsuta only runs until 4 pm or until the bowls are sold out (Tsuta only serve 150 bowls per day). The tickets usually sold out by 10 am. The good side is, there is no limit on tickets per person. Thus, anyone can be unlucky of coming to the place and leaving empty handed; it’s an experience that demands true commitment.

Tsuta has developed a ticketing system to make it easier for ramen enthusiast: first get your time slot ticket and come back based on the time slot you get. The tickets are color coded and there’s a guide to let you know when to come. The staff will collect a 1,000-yen deposit for each ticket; this deposit will be returned upon your arrival. Another rule: each costumer can only order one bowl of ramen.

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Tsuta offers four basic ramen choices which are soba or tsukesoba, paired with a ‘shio’ (salt) or ‘shoyu’ (soy sauce) broth. To order, press the favorable menu from the vending machine and hand the order to the staff. It takes only 15 minutes before the bowl arrived in front of your eyes. During my visit, me and my friend ordered both shio and shoyu so-ba.

The ramen in Tsuta looked absolutely pretty. Everything sits in its place. The broth was clear, the noodles sitting perfectly in the middle accompanied with a serving of wonton and sliced meat.

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The broth has exquisite flavours with a perfect balance, thick yet mild. It deliciously tread on balance between sour and salty flavors. The noodles had a nice bite, chewy without being too soft.

Everything in the bowl are in their right place; truly a worthwhile prize for all the effort.

TSUTA RAMEN
1-14-1 Sugamo, Toshima-ku
Tokyo
(5 minutes walk from Sugamo Station)


Written by Tatu Hutami January 31, 2017.

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