Monday, November 17, 2008

Tokyo - Tokyo Mentsudan

Outside of Japan, I tend to avoid udon (of the fat variety) unless it is Inaniwa udon. However, udon in Japan is a pleasure to eat for its smooth and chewy texture. On this trip, I had occasion to visit Tokyo Mentsudan. According to a pretty reliable website, Tokyo Mentsudan is originally from the Kagawa prefecture and started the Sanuki udon boom in Tokyo.

If you want service, this is NOT the place. This is a self serve assembly line where you place your order, wait to pick up, then walk past the never ending condiments including rows and rows of tempura of anything you can find, onigiri, sweet bean curd skins, etc. Then you make payment. If you ordered an udon which has soup, don't panic if you dot your without. Turn on the tap after the cashier, and voila, soup!

The 3 of us were obviously the greenest and greediest, and got quizzed by the udon chef on our orders. 2 orders of udon with beef, 2 orders of curry udon, and for good measure, udon with sesame sauce.
Of course the udon was all good! Soft but not mashy, tender yet chewy with a nice bite. Perfect!
The beef while not the best cut, was nevertheless tasty. The curry had a nice touch of a raw egg cracked into it and added to the the robustness of the sauce. The sesame sauce was the most ordinary of the lot, although still good and had a slightly nice tartness to it which cut through the ordinarily cloying taste of the sesame.
Definitely worth the search if you love your noodles!

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