Yes, I do know that I am only supposed to be writing about ramen on this blog. However I sincerely feel that as far as udon shops go, and things that are "ramen-like", this shop deserves a special mention here. This is the first udon shop that I have ever written about. I had a hankering for thick firm udon, not too far from where I live, but I thought my options were basically a) slim and b) none. But I did some searching and I located Fuji Yoshida Udon Marunaga in Ebara, about a 5 minute walk west of Togoshi Ginza and 5 minutes south west from the Gotanda TOC shop. "Fuji Yoshida udon" is first and foremost a style of udon dish that is available in some towns in Yamanashi-ken near Mount Fuji. There are also a couple of companies by that name or similar that make specialized udon and soba. Fuji Yoshida udon (the dish) is comprised of very thick udon noodles (#2 pencil thickness, although sometimes slightly flat in cross-section), not completely cooked through it seems, served in a warm or cold medium thickness meat/shoyu broth with cabbage and meat (frequently chicken) in it, sometimes also onions. There are also various other toppings that people add like raw egg, wakame, etc. The combination of all of these things has an excellent taste and mouthfeel. In terms of mouth feel, the thick noodles, the cabbage etc., the whole thing is not unlike Ramen Jiro. So I found this place in Ebara and hippity-hopped on down there. I can definitely say that the noodles there are very satisfying. They will cook them longer if you you ask, some people may not really like them that al-dente. I am told that occasionally this place will have a line outside, but that might more frequently be in the fall or winter. I had the niku-negi tsuke-udon (肉ねぎつけうどん)- served like tsukemen, with the broth separate. Very tasty and satisfying. This place would make a good start or end to the day after strolling around Togoshi Ginza or shopping at TOC.
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