Friday, July 4, 2008

Vegetarian Ramen in Tokyo (Kagetsu Nana Ramen)

Ever since I saw the movie Tampopo I've wanted eat some real Japanese ramen. Now I've been to Japan several times and have lots of Udon and Soba, I'd still never had Ramen since the secret recipe is usually closely guarded combination of pork, chicken, and beef bone stock. Even innocent sounding Miso, Salt, or Soy Ramen are made with meat stock.

I want to Tokyo in March and this sign outside the Kagetsu Ramen Chain caught my eye. "No Pork. No Chicken. No Fish. Only Vegetable." It's totally vegan ramen.

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I came back a few days later to try it out. Even though its a real restaurant with waitresses, you have to place your order from one of these vending machines (which have always intimidated me) and then give your ticket to the cook.

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And then they bring you the soup.

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So how is it? I give it two thumbs up. I really like all of the vegetables they put in it--broccoli, daikon, carrot, baby corn. Often vegan/vegetable broth taste really bland, but this broth tastes really good (at least to me). I would eat it again for sure if I had the chance.

And my in-laws seemed to like it too!

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Unfortunately, this is only on the menu for limited time. But I read that they might bring it back next spring. So keep your open if you are in Japan. The place is called Ramen Kagetsu Arashi, they have 200+ branches in Japan including one in Narita airport.

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