Tokyo    ramen    in English    24 by 7     




Right in the middle of the back streets of Akihabara, on the west side of Chuo-dori where they have all the little (and medium-sized) shops selling cheap stuff like usb drives and screwdriver sets from China out of blue milk crates, is a large brown shop containing Daruma, one of a chain of several shops specializing in tonkotsu ramen. The tonkotsu broth was interesting since instead of the small suspended abura chunks floating in the broth, you could actually see little eddies and swirls and rivers of clear fatty liquid running around on the top layer. They give you little trays to put your ramen on - I wonder if that is really easier than just wiping down the counter - and curtains hanging from the ceiling sort of like Ichiran. When you come into the shop, the ticket machine is immediately on your left when you walk in the door and it has an English menu hanging from the side of it on a string. The bowl of ramen is a bit small compared to others in this genre. The noodles are standard Hakata type. The broth was a bit less salty, but had a rich taste due to all the fat described above. The pork was almost bacon-like with its alternate strips of white meat and shiny fat. They had the old school style round spoons, along with some interesting condiments on the table including karashi takana, red shoga and a very good type of dried fried garlic particles. You also get your own mini bowl of sesame seeds and a stick to grind them with, like in some tonkatsu restaurants. Note during this hot summer though that they have no tsukemen. Also I ordered the menma chashu tonkotsu, and the menma was cold, as though I was the first person to order it that day and they took it straight from the fridge. Based on the overall experience, the English menu, the proximity to Akihabara, I can say this is recommended.

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